Please read these terms and conditions carefully. Whilst it seeks to set out the terms and conditions upon which Pinel Advocates (reference to which shall include Pinel Advocates Group, Pinel Advocates Services Limited, Pinel Advocates Group Limited, Piper Bailey Limited and any other entity which may provide any services to you) (“we” or “us”) agrees to provide services to you as the client in more detail, it does not aim to cover all of the issues which may arise during the course of our relationship. The terms of engagement and any letter of engagement should be read together and, in the event of any conflict between the two documents, the letter of engagement shall prevail.
Please contact us immediately if there is anything in these terms of engagement which you do not understand.
Nature of advice
We advise only on Jersey law. We do not offer any opinion, guidance or advice as to the laws of any other jurisdiction and nothing may be construed as giving such advice. We do not provide tax advice or any advice in relation to the commerciality of the matter, action or transaction.
Unless we explicitly state otherwise in any advice, or we otherwise agree in writing, our advice is provided solely for the purposes of the instructions to which it relates and for the benefit only of the Client (as defined in the attached letter of engagement).
Our advice may not be communicated to other parties without the prior written consent of a partner of Pinel Advocates.
We will keep you informed of the progression of your matter. We will usually do so by either email or telephone to the email address or telephone number that you have provided to us unless you specifically request otherwise.
You will keep us informed of your current contact details. With electronic communication there is a risk of non-receipt, delayed receipt, inadvertent misdirection or interception by third parties. We use virus scanning software to reduce the risk of viruses and similar damaging items being transmitted through emails or electronic storage devices. We also expect you to operate such software. However, electronic communication is not totally secure and we cannot be held responsible for damage or loss caused by viruses nor for communications which are corrupted or altered after despatch. Nor do we accept any liability for problems or accidental errors relating to this means of communication especially in relation to commercially sensitive material. Any email communications to or from us may be monitored by us for operational or business reasons.
At any time you may, by written notice, terminate your instructions to Pinel Advocates and we may cease to act for the Client. Please note that Pinel Advocates is entitled to retain all papers and documents relating to the matter if there are any fees owing at the date of termination, until such time as any outstanding fees are paid. You undertake to promptly take all actions necessary, execute all and any documents requested by Pinel Advocates to give effect to such termination and you undertake to meet all and any costs, charges or fees relating to such termination.
Client Due Diligence and Anti-Money Laundering requirements
You agree that you will, upon request and without undue delay, provide us with any client due diligence documentation we may reasonably require in order to comply with our obligations under the legislation and regulations against money laundering in Jersey.
Pinel Advocates is bound by the Proceeds of Crime (Jersey) Law 1999. We rely upon the guidance notes issued by the Jersey regulator, the Jersey Financial Services Commission.
We will always seek client identification and due diligence documents that comply with best practice under the law and regulations referred to above.
Notwithstanding the scope of any regulatory requirements and without limiting our rights under this paragraph, we reserve the right to terminate our relationship with you at any point if we have concerns about either the nature of the transaction(s) on which we are advising or the persons involved with them or if any request for client due diligence documentation or further information is not met promptly (whether we have an obligation or right to request such information or not).
Limitation of liability
We will not be liable for the acts or defaults of any third party or any agents or sub-contractors and will only accept liability for direct loss suffered by the person instructing us or a disclosed underlying client alone and, in any event, only to the extent that such loss was reasonably foreseeable as arising from our act or default giving rise to the loss. We do not accept any liability for any consequential loss or loss of profit however arising, whether or not such loss was foreseeable and whether it was suffered by the person by whom we are instructed or any third party.
We will not accept responsibility if you act on advice given by us on an earlier occasion without first confirming with us that the advice remains valid in the light of any changes in the law or your circumstances and will accept no liability for losses arising from changes in the law or in the interpretation of the law which are first published after the date on which our advice is given.
The total aggregate liability of Pinel Advocates in respect of any and all claims shall never exceed £2 million.
We believe this limitation of liability is reasonable having regard to the availability and cost of professional indemnity insurance. If you feel that this level of cover is inappropriate for your matter then please do not hesitate to discuss the matter with Andrew Pinel.
We generally charge fees based on either a time and expertise basis or on a fixed fee basis.
When our fees are based on the amount of our time and expertise a transaction requires, our professional fees are normally calculated by reference to the current hourly rate of the lawyer concerned, applicable to the type of work done at the time the work is done. We reserve the right to charge higher than usual hourly rates or apply an uplift if either the nature of the work or the applicable deadlines justify this.
Hourly rates vary both between departments and lawyers and the standard hourly rates of the lawyers working on your instruction are available on request.
The rates are reviewed annually and are adjusted and applied automatically from the time they are reviewed.
For many transactions we are able to give estimates of the cost of completing the work. Estimates are not quotes or caps on our fees and are provided solely for the purpose of indicating to you the likely overall cost of our services. In the event that the actual fees that are chargeable on a time and expertise basis exceed the estimate, we shall be entitled to recover from you our fees in full.
(ii) Fixed fees
On occasion we are able to provide fixed fee quotations for particular instructions or elements of work within a larger instruction. We expect to be paid the amount of the fixed fee regardless of the time or expertise required to complete the work. However, we will not seek to charge more than the fixed fee quotation if our time and expertise costs exceed the fixed fee unless any unforeseen complications or delays occur. In such event we will endeavour to contact you using the contact details that you have provided us with in order to discuss the likely cost consequences of said complication or delay.
(iii) Fee caps
In certain circumstances we may agree to cap our fees at a particular level.
In this event we will charge fees for time incurred up to but not in excess of the
amount of the fee cap unless any unforeseen complications or delays occur. In such event we will endeavour to contact you using the contact details that you have provided us with in order to discuss the likely cost consequences of said complication or delay. No fee cap will be implied into any estimate unless expressly provided for.
(iv) Aborted or delayed transactions
Transactions may be aborted or delayed for a variety of reasons beyond our control. We do not work on a contingency basis and in these circumstances we will charge for work done up to the time the transaction aborted or delayed.
By instructing us you authorise us to incur such external expenses as we consider necessary or reasonable in order to progress your matter and agree to reimburse us for such expenses. In the absence of agreement to the contrary, we may also add a charge in respect of printing, photocopying and telecommunication costs. We are not obliged to incur any fee, cost or expense on your behalf and we will have no liability to you in the event that we fail to pay for any fee, cost or expense unless we have agreed explicitly to pay such disbursement on your behalf and you have put us in cleared funds sufficient to cover the cost of such disbursement prior to it falling due.
Our charges are net of any bank charges and withholding taxes and you should not assume that we are registered for tax in any country or state from which you may choose to make payment. If you are compelled to make any deductions from payments on account of such charges or taxes, you must gross up the payment so that we receive the amount stated on the face of any fee note which we issue.
(v) Orders for costs
Your obligation to pay our fees and disbursements in litigious matters exists irrespective of the outcome of any proceedings or any order for costs which may be made. We should point out that even if you are successful in your litigation and you are entitled to the payment of your costs by another party it is unlikely that you will recover the full amount which you have been billed by us.
Unless indicated otherwise, all estimates and quotations will be given exclusive of the local Goods and Services Tax (“GST”), which is Jersey’s equivalent of VAT. The current rate of GST is 5% on all services provided by us.
Payment on account
We often require some or all of the fees we estimate as likely to be incurred on an instruction to be paid at the commencement of the instruction and held on account of our fees and any disbursements incurred for you in relation to that instruction.
Where we receive such payment on account, we will hold the money in a non-interest bearing account which is segregated from Pinel Advocates’ money. As and when invoices are rendered for professional fees and disbursements, you authorise us to apply the sums held in such account on your behalf to immediately settle such invoice. In the event that the fees and disbursements incurred for you in relation to that instruction exceed the sums paid on account, you will settle the balance immediately in cash.
Where there are any sums left on account following the conclusion of an instruction, we will either repay the balance to the account from which it was transmitted or we will seek your permission to apply it to another instruction if appropriate.
Sums received as part of a transaction
We generally do not provide our client account for the purposes of holding sums payable to third parties, whether as part of a transaction on which we are advising, to facilitate an escrow account arrangement, a trust arrangement or otherwise. In the event that such services are required, specific arrangements and additional due diligence will be required to comply with our regulatory obligations. We accept no liability for any sums held in a client account which are not readily available to us as a consequence of failure of any financial institution regulated and doing business in any jurisdiction where you have instructed this firm.
We will usually submit an invoice at the completion of a transaction. Unless we explicitly state otherwise, we reserve the right to submit invoices periodically. Unless requested by you, invoices will be submitted by email only.
Payment is due immediately upon receipt of our invoice. We reserve the right to impose interest charges on any outstanding sum which relates to an invoice that is overdue by 14 days or more.
Confidentiality and Publicity
We will keep confidential all information and documents provided to us by the Client. However, by signing the accompanying letter of engagement you agree that there may be instances in which disclosure is necessary and/or acceptable. Such instances include but are not limited to occasions on which:
- we are authorised to disclose information or documents by the Client;
- the information or documentation is already in the public domain;
- we are required to disclose information by the regulations and laws of Jersey or by order of the courts of Jersey or any other court of a competent jurisdiction; or
- we deem it necessary or desirable to disclose information or documentation in order to defend any claim brought against Pinel Advocates.
Copyright and intellectual property
We shall retain all copyright in any document prepared by us during the course of the matter unless specifically agreed otherwise in writing.
Pinel Advocates is registered under the Data Protection (Jersey) Law 2005. We shall ensure that any personal data is processed in accordance with the requirements of that law.
Enforceability and Severability
If at any time any term or provision of these terms of engagement shall become void, illegal or unenforceable, either in whole or in part, then such term or provision shall be severed from the remainder and deemed not to form a part of these terms of engagement and the validity and enforceability of the remaining terms or provisions shall not be affected.
Terms used in these terms and conditions
The term "Partner" shall mean, for the purposes of Pinel Advocates, Andrew Pinel, and for the purposes of Pinel Advocates Group, Andrew Pinel and Agnieszka Blaszczyk.
Governing law and Jurisdiction
These terms of engagement shall be governed by and construed in accordance with Jersey law. As a client, you irrevocably agree to submit to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of Jersey to deal with any claim, difference or dispute which may arise in connection with these terms of engagement.