Terms & Conditions


Instructions


1. Instructions will be accepted from you or any party nominated by you. In the case of a limited company, instructions will be accepted from any director of the company or any party nominated by the board of directors.

We may request that you confirm any verbal instructions in writing in which case we reserve the right not to act upon those instructions until the written instructions are received from you.


2. We can be contacted during office opening hours (Monday to Friday 9 am to 5 pm) by telephone or email.


3. Please be aware that in the case of purchase, sale or lease of land or property, we can bind you to a contract for a sale or purchase or commit you to another course of action as your agents notwithstanding the fact that you may not have signed anything.


Charges


1. Unless negotiated and agreed in advance fees are charged on the basis of time spent on the work together with an element for responsibility which can vary according to a number of matters such as urgency, importance of the work to you, amount or value of money or property involved, complexity, difficulty or novelty of the matters, length, number, or importance of documents or papers.


2. Any estimate given will be for a probable fee based on our experience of the general amount of work involved in a typical transaction or dispute or other legal task of the type involved. if the work turns out to be more complex than normal then our estimate may require to be amended. You will be kept advised of any such changes.


3. Fees, which are not agreed in advance, are subject to independent assessment by the Auditor or Court. This process is known as “taxation”. You are entitled to require a file to be taxed if you are not happy about the fee charged. In such a case the file is passed to the auditor who will fix what he considers to be a fair and reasonable fee in all the circumstances, including those factors outlined above. The auditor can fix a fee higher or lower than the fee charged. If it is lower, then we will pay the cost of taxation. If, however he prices a higher fee or confirms the fee as charged then you will be responsible for that fee as well as the auditor`s costs.


4. Along with our fee we will issue a Statement detailing financial dealings on your behalf. This will include outlays which may have been incurred. Where outlays have been incurred we may require payment of them within Seven days of receipt by you of a request.


5. We may require you to settle accounts and repay outlays during the course of transactions. In such a case, interim statements will be issued. Large outlays such as Stamp Duty or Counsel`s fees will require to be paid to us before they are due to be paid out by us. In the event that you fail to pay the outlays as requested, then we reserve the right to withdraw from acting on your behalf.

For a specific transaction, please contact us for details of the outlays payable.

Some outlays may be incurred by us in advance of completion of your transaction and we reserve the request payment of these from you when they are incurred.


6. We will require payment of all fees and outlays within One month of the issue to you of a request for payment of the same either by way of a Fee Note, Interim Fee Note or request for payment of outlays. In the event that you do not pay the amounts due within the time specified then we reserve the right to charge interest on the fee outstanding at the rate of 4% above the Base Lending Rate of the Royal Bank of Scotland plc from time to time from date of due payment until date of actual payment.


Money Laundering


1. The Money Laundering Regulations require us to be satisfied as to the identity of our clients and as to the source of any funds passing through our hands. In order to comply with these Regulations, we may need to ask you for proof of identity and other information in relation to these matters. We reserve the right to withdraw from acting for you if you fail to provide us with the information requested of you and required in connection with our Money Laundering Procedures.


2. In terms of our Money Laundering Procedures, cash can only be accepted from you up to a total of £1,000 for your transaction. Any cheques or other funds which you provide to us must be demonstrated to come from your own bank account.


General


1. Our aim is to provide an efficient service, but if you are unhappy about any aspect, then please discuss your concerns in the first instance with the person dealing with you. However if that would cause you difficulty and embarrassment please speak to Robert Westwood who is the designated complaints partner or any of the other partners whose names appear on the notepaper. If the matter cannot be resolved you are always entitled to refer it to the Law Society of Scotland, 26 Drumsheugh Gardens, Edinburgh EH3 7YR.


2. Information provided to us will be dealt with in confidence and will only be disclosed to parties authorised by you or as required by the Law Society of Scotland or any other authorised body.


3. This firm is not permitted by the Law Society of Scotland and indeed will not act in any situation where there is a conflict of interest between clients of the firm. Where the firm is acting for more than one party in a transaction and you are of the opinion that there is a conflict of interest you should alert the person dealing with your case of your concerns immediately. If requested to do so by you we will immediately pass your file to another solicitor to act on your behalf.


4. In all instances cheques should be made payable to Ballantyne & Copland. Any monies to be sent to us in connection with your transaction should be sent no later than three days piror to the appropriate transaction proceeding to allow the cheque time to clear. In the event that we are holding funds on your behalf after the cheque has cleared and these are not immediately required for your transaction they will be invested on your behalf to earn interest which will be paid to you on completion of your transaction or at such other time as requested by you.


5. As with all solicitors this firm is insured for loss arising to you through negligence of this firm or employees of this firm. In the event that you are of the opinion that this firm`s negligence has caused you loss we would be grateful if you could advise us of that fact and we will immediately arrange for independent advice to be given to you regarding this.


6. Please note in terms of general law that we have a right to retain any titles and papers held on your behalf until any outstanding accounts due to us by you are paid.


Incidental Financial Business


As we may have to carry out incidental financial business for you, we are required by the Law Society of Scotland to advise you of the following terms of business:


1. The firm is licensed by the Law Society of Scotland to carry on incidental financial business activities. These activities are limited in scope. For example, the financial advice provided will be obtained from a firm of stockbrokers. Our firm will not comment on their advice.


2. The firm is not authorised by the Financial Services Authority under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000.


3. The firm is covered by Professional Indemnity Insurance under The Law Society of Scotland’s Master Policy and also the Scottish Solicitors Guarantee Fund. The current limit of indemnity on the Master Policy is £1.25 million. The Guarantee Fund has unlimited liability.


4. Any complaint which you may have about any service provided by the firm shall be made by you direct to our partner Robert Westwood notwithstanding that you, in addition, have a right to complain to The Law Society of Scotland, 26 Drumsheugh Gardens, Edinburgh EH3 7YR (Tel. No. 0131 226 7411) and to complain against any finding of the Society to The Scottish Legal Services Ombudsman, 17 Waterloo Place, Edinburgh EH1 30L, (Tel. No. 0131 244 304).