The following are the Terms and Conditions upon which I, Mr Keith G Smith, agree to accept an ‘Appointment’ as an Expert Witness to provide witness services as an Expert in the field of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery in accordance with Instructions received from the Client, and in accordance with the terms of engagement as set out below:
- Subject to paragraph 9 below, my fee is £225.00 per hour for all time spent on the case. Time spent in necessary travel will be charged at £85.00 per hour.
- All reasonable expenses incurred by me will be charged at cost. Any necessary mileage will be charged at 48 pence per mile or first-class rail fare whichever is appropriate. Copies of receipts will be provided if requested.
- Reports are normally prepared within 4-6 weeks of receiving written instructions from the Instructing Solicitor.
- When required, Clients will be seen for a pre-examination interview and an examination at the BMI Thornbury Hospital in Sheffield.
- The Expert confirms that he holds professional indemnity insurance with the Dental Defence Union.
- The client will pay me within 60 days from completion and receipt of the report and delivery of the invoice. Separate invoices will be rendered for further work undertaken on the case and will be paid within 60 days from delivery of such further work. If an unpaid invoice is passed to an external company for non-payment, and extra fee may be incurred.
- Once the case has been set down for trial, I will use my best endeavours to keep those dates free of other work or other trial commitments.
- If the case is set down for trial and is cancelled, settled or my need to attend cancelled within 5 working days, one notional day’s attendance at court will be chargeable as set out below.
- My daily rate for attending court hearings is £1,200 per day including travelling and waiting time that day whether or not oral evidence is given.
- For pre-trial work in publicly funded cases (where my fees constitute a disbursement) the client shall advise me of any undue delay in payment. I will assume that the client has received all necessary authority for me to be instructed and paid.
- Accounts not settled within the agreed period and at my discretion, interest will be charged at the rate of 2% per month, or part of a month, until full settlement is received, pursuant to the Late Payment of Commercial Debts (interest) Act 1998 and Late Payment of Commercial Debts Regulations 2002.
- I reserve the right to terminate this agreement upon giving written notice to the Client, without prejudice to any accrued rights under the agreement, if the client
- dissolved or becomes insolvent
- makes a general assignment, arrangement or composition with its creditors.
- The rights and remedies set forth in this agreement are not exclusive and are not in addition to all other rights and remedies provided by law.
- This agreement shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and constitutes the entire agreement between parties.
- I will use my experience, care and skill in fulfilling your instructions to the best of my ability. In the event of dissatisfaction with my services, the client shall put the reasons to me in writing.
- All reports are prepared in compliance with the current guidance contained in Part 35 of the Civil Procedure Rules. The Expert confirms that he has read and will comply with the Protocol published by the Civil Justice Council, CPR35, PD35, and PD Pre-Action Conduct.
In particular the Expert understands that, although he owes a duty of care to the Client and the Instructing Solicitors to exercise reasonable skill and care in carrying out their instructions, his primary duty as an Expert Witness is to provide independent and unbiased evidence to the Court.
- I shall not incur any liability to the client for any loss or damage which may be suffered as a result, directly or indirectly, by the supply of services being prevented, hindered or delayed as a consequence of circumstances outside my control.
- I will own the copyright in all reports and/or materials produced by me. Additionally, I will retain the title to all reports and/or materials produced by me until I have received full payment in accordance with paragraph 1 above. Subject to receipt of all payments due, your Client is authorised to use the same for the purposes of the matters contained in the Schedule.
- The client shall provide me with comprehensive Instructions including whether the matter is pre-trial advice or litigation is likely and all-time tabling information as far as is practicable including track allocation. I reserve the right to terminate this agreement, and to charge for work undertaken to that point, if the client or anyone representing the client shall have provided me with the information which is false or misleading and which may compromise my duty to the Court.
Please confirm your agreement in writing to the above terms.
Please do not hesitate to contact me if there is anything relating to these terms which you would like to discuss.
Mr Keith G Smith