BCI directed to frame guidelines to regulate lawyer's Fee

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Justice Prathiba M. Singh directed BCI to consider framing guidelines/rules prescribing the manner of charging professional fees by lawyers in the case of Deepa Bhure v. Jai Kishan.

The court observed, "While it may be true that litigants may not pay the agreed fees to lawyers, the same cannot justify conduct of taking blank cheques as security for fees and encashing the same without the permission of the client.”

The Bar Council of india is directed to consider framing Guidelines prescribing the manner of charging professional fees by lawyers. The said guidelines may broadly address the following issues:

  • Manner of determining the fee consistent with the standing in the Bar, as prescribed in Rule 11;
  • Manner of determining the fee consistent with the nature of the case, as prescribed in Rule 11;
  • Reasonable fee that can be charged by lawyers, especially from individual litigants and whether some broad parameters should be prescribed;
  • Reduction of the fee agreement in writing in some form;
  • Charging of professional fees in kind and whether the same is permissible;
  • Issuance of receipts upon accepting the professional fees and whether the same ought to be mandatory;
  • Insistence of payment of fees in cash beyond the prescribed limits in law;
  • Demanding and accepting security in any form, for professional fee and whether the same is permissible; modes of recovery of outstanding fees from litigants;