Prices and funding

At Sonn Macmillan Walker, we undertake legally aided and privately funded representation nationwide. See below regarding how you might fund your case with us

Legal Aid Funding

We are able to apply for legal aid funding on clients' behalf. Whether you qualify for legal aid depends on two factors: financial means and whether your case meets the interests of justice test. Although this page will provide an overview, we recommend speaking to our team regarding your situation should you have any questions. 

 

Magistrates' Court Cases

For cases in the magistrates' court, if you earn a gross annual income of £12,475 or less, your case will be fully funded by the Legal Aid Agency (LAA) with no contributions to your legal costs required from you. If you earn more than £22,325 per year, then your case may not be funded in the Magistrates Court. 

If you earn more than £12,475, but less than £22,325, then it will depend on a full means test whether the LAA will fund your case. A full means test takes into account factors such as housing costs, childcare costs, and an adjusted living allowance. 

Please be aware that income is considered as a household. So if you have a partner, the LAA will need to know their income too. 

If your case is sent to the Crown Court, the Crown Court means test will apply instead. 

 

Crown Court Cases 

For cases in the Crown Court, you will not be eligible for legal aid if your household has disposable income of more than £37,500. If you earn more than £12,475, you may need to make contributions to your legal costs. If you earn more than £22,325, you may have to make contributions, or may not be eligible depending on a full means test. 

If you are under 18 or receive the following benefits, you will automatically be passported to qualify for legal aid: 

  • Universal Credit 
  • Income-based Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA)
  • Income Support
  • State Pension Guarantee Credit 

See here for further information on whether you qualify for legal aid. 

 

Police Station Interviews

If you have been arrested or are being interviewed under caution at a police station, you are entitled to speak to a solicitor free of charge regardless of your means.

For the first interview in a matter, you are entitled to ask for a representative to attend and advise you free of charge. If you are being re-interviewed in a matter where you were not represented in your first interview, you are entitled for a legal representative to attend your interview free of charge.

Get in touch if you have an upcoming police station matter you need help with.

Contact Us

To discuss fees and for further information, please contact us.

020 7481 9157

"After my previous experience of law firms, it is refreshing to be treated so well and I will have no hesitation in recommending your services in the future. Thank you."

Client, 2022

"The team are excellent on general crime matters and offer a level of service comparative to the best private crime firms. They are particularly good with complex, document-heavy Crown Court litigation and excel at client care."

Legal 500

"The team at Sonn Macmillan Walker are second to none. They strive always to achieve the very best results and are able to do so through their hard work and commitment to clients."

Legal 500

"Hands on service, really conscientious across the entire firm, including paralegals. Very personable, intelligent lawyers. Collaborative approach with counsel. Well resourced."

Legal 500

"SMW is a great firm, with great staff (from receptionists to partners). They really care about their clients and go above and beyond to ensure each client understands what is happening at every stage of the investigation process. "

Legal 500

Private Funding

Private legal representation is not the exclusive domain of the wealthy. Many clients are ordinary people who find themselves in extraordinary circumstances and require a robust defence of their reputation and livelihood. We specialise in offering outstanding value for representation by our accomplished and experienced lawyers. We offer private representation at the early stages of a police investigation pre charge, for police interviews, magistrates' courts proceedings, Crown Court proceedings, Confiscation proceedings and Extradition matters.

If you would like advice in relation to representation in the magistrates' court, please contact Daniel Cavaglieri

Pre-charge Advice

For instances which are not covered by free legal advice at the police station, we also offer privately funded advice prior to any charge being made. This may cover instances where you have not been charged yet, but have already had a police interview. Alex Whitmore regularly provides pre-charge advice, given her frequent presence in police stations across London. 

Motor Offences

David Sonn has a wealth of experience in this area and as a firm we provide expert advice and assistance to clients facing prosecutions for driving offences.  For matters dealt with in the magistrates’ court, public funding is generally not available.

Cash & Asset Forfeiture

David Bloom is a specialist in this field and as a firm we represent clients facing restraint proceedings and application for cash or asset forfeiture.  Although considered in the criminal courts these are civil applications for which legal aid is not available.

Appeals

If we did not act in the original proceedings we will only take on appeals on a privately funded basis. Please contact Amy Cox for further information in respect of private appeals. 

For all potential private matters we are happy to provide no-obligation quotes upon request.  Value Added Tax will be applied to your bill, unless you are exempt.  In most private cases, we can agree a fixed fee, and the level of the fee will depend on the complexity of the case, the volume of evidence and preparation time required. It will also depend on whether the case will involve a guilty plea or a trial.  If charging an hourly rate, the rate will depend on the seniority of the fee earner deployed. Our hourly rates start from £150 for a paralegal assistant and can exceed £400 for our most experienced solicitor.

We will re-charge our travel costs if traveling outside London.  In certain cases, we may need to instruct an expert witness. The expert’s fees will be in addition to our fees.

If you wish us to instruct a barrister to represent you at court, the barrister’s fees will be in addition to our fees. This cost will depend on the complexity of the case and seniority of the barrister instructed.

Need to speak to someone?

Call us on 020 7481 9157 or email us at enquiries@smw-law.co.uk. Otherwise, request a call back with the below form and a member of our team will contact you.

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