Solicitor Fees: Photocopying

A certain amount of photocopying in a case is inevitable and it is therefore included as part of the overheads in a solicitor's fees or hourly rate. It is only when the copying becomes excessive that it is right and proper to charge any of it to the client.

This has not stopped other members of our profession from seeking to charge the client for every single page of copying that ever crosses their desk. We have come across client care letters which entitle the solicitors to charge for every page of copying, with the charge for colour copying usually around 2 to 2.5 times more expensive than black and white. By operation of stealth solicitors costs get padded out as a result.

Funnily enough, when we have challenged the costs of those solicitors and they have drawn a detailed bill copying has never been included. This means that they know they are not supposed to charge for it and that they are trying to pull a fast one on unsuspecting clients.

A word of warning, it is legitimate for solicitors to charge the other side for providing copies of documents. If your solicitor is charged copying by the other side they are entitled to pass the cost on to you (as long as it was not replacements for pages they lost or spilt coffee over).