He also saw a particular strength in contractual freedom: if the client wants to enter into a contingency fee agreement with his lawyer, he must release him. On April 1, 2000, the government relaxed the rules on conditional fees in line with its policy of facilitating access to justice by simplifying and making the use of conditional pricing agreements and legal protection insurance more affordable. These provisions transposing the Access to Justice Act 1999 apply only to uniform conditional pricing agreements. The government has now announced that it will expand the law to allow collective rules on conditional fees that could be used by large providers and buyers or users of legal services such as unions or insurers. The current rules continue to apply to CFAs finalized before April 1, 2013 and to ATE guidelines. There are provisions that prevent the parties from circumventing the amendments by adopting, before the reference date, a collective CFA relating to a procedural class and not to a particular right. If the agreement is a collective CFA, there is an additional requirement for counsel or trial services to be provided to the party prior to April 1, 2013. Reg 7 amends the conditional regulations of Fairy 2000 by specifying that these regulations do not apply to CCFAs. According to Reg 4 (1), the agreement must “indicate the circumstances under which taxes and fees must be paid by the legal representative or part of them.” The 2000 conditional royalty collective agreements, which began on November 30, 2000, have implemented collective agreements on conditional royalties. They provide for the use of a conditional agreement in a more commercial context where a process funder (whether a lender or another financier) is a party to the agreement. For more information on third-party financing, click here.
A funder is defined as “the part of a conditional collective pricing agreement (CCFA) that, under this agreement, must pay the taxes of the legal representative.” À Parag. 2, point e), the code states that it applies to the contingency tax and the conditional royalty scheme.