In-house advocacy: Enhancing the client experience

  • Market Insight 26 February 2024 26 February 2024
  • UK & Europe

  • Disputes - Economic Risk

Offering an in-house advocacy service is primarily about client choice. Clyde & Co offers clients the opportunity to choose, on a case-by-case basis, whether their interests are best served by the advocacy in the case being undertaken by either our skilled in-house advocacy team, by a separately instructed English barrister, or by both.

The client’s final decision will depend on a number of factors, which may include any specific expertise needed, the proposed fee structure, overall cost aspirations, the applicable court or tribunal, and the legal and cultural backgrounds of the parties.

However, it is important to remember that the effectiveness of legal representation depends on the lawyer's skills, experience, and the specific requirements of the case rather than the traditional English law separation of roles between barristers and solicitors alone. 

Indeed, effectiveness as an advocate in front of an international tribunal depends on legal and sectoral expertise, knowledge of the case, and cultural understanding, as well as upon advocacy skills. A solicitor well-versed in the applicable law and relevant facts, and familiar with the diverse backgrounds of tribunal members, can be just as effective, if not more so, than an English barrister.  

The parties’ backgrounds are important too. In jurisdictions without a split between barristers and solicitors, it is expected that one lawyer or team of lawyers handles all aspects of a case, from advisory work to advocacy. Clyde & Co is able to offer clients from all jurisdictions the choice to run their case in the same way, with the same level of continuity and understanding of their needs. 

While specialisation in advocacy can offer depth, an integrated approach ensures a comprehensive and cohesive understanding of the case and that the same trusted relationships between lawyer and client are maintained throughout.  A Clyde & Co client can choose for a case to be presented at hearings by the same team which has been dealing with it from the outset, and throughout, and which knows it best. This can result in a more coherent and unified legal strategy, enhancing the overall quality of representation. 

This carries over into financial matters. The budget options for a case, and the scope for competitive alternative pricing structures, can be broader with a single unified team. For instance, when advocacy is undertaken in house, fixed fees and conditional fee arrangements can be easier to agree and implement from the outset and on the whole of a matter. The use of third party services, including independent barristers, may limit how much of the matter can be priced on a fixed or conditional basis. By using its in house advocacy team, Clyde & Co is able to broaden these funding options. 

In summary, Clyde & Co’s in-house advocacy service can provide clients with cost efficiencies, seamless communication, and a cohesive legal strategy. The integrated approach ensures continuity in representation, resulting in the best possible presentation of a client’s case to the court or tribunal.  

Watch Ian Hopkinson share his thoughts on in-house advocacy

For further information about our advocacy offering, please contact Ian Hopkinson.  


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