Article 1 – General statements
- Wetting & De Roode Lawyers is a partnership under Dutch law based in Leiderdorp.
- These terms and conditions apply to all contracts procured by Wetting and De Roode Lawyers, unless parties have explicitly deviated from them in writing.
- All instructions from clients ought to be exclusively entrusted to and accepted by Wetting & De Roode Lawyers, with the exception of article 7:404 of the Dutch Civil Code (which offers an arrangement in case a specific person is meant to execute instructions) and article 7:407 section 2 of the Dutch Civil Code (which establishes joint liability, in case instructions are directed at two or more persons).
- The professional and conduct regulations as stated by the Dutch Bar Association and/or the MFN are part of the agreement. The client accepts any consequences resulting from this.
- The accepted contract demands an effort requirement from Wetting & De Roode Lawyers, however, no obligation of results may be derived from this.
- Wetting & De Roode Lawyers shall, whenever possible, consult the client before involving third parties and shall in any event exercise due care in its selection of third parties. Wetting & De Roode Lawyers cannot be held liable for shortcomings of any third parties.
Article 2 – Fees and invoices
- Unless otherwise agreed in writing, fees will be calculated based on the number of hours worked, multiplied by the hourly rate established annually by Wetting & De Roode Lawyers. All amounts exclude disbursements and VAT.
- Wetting & De Roode Lawyers will not charge office costs.
- The fee with regard to rendered services will be charged to the client monthly (after the fact). Fixed prices may be (partially) charged by means of an advance payment.
- Wetting & De Roode Lawyers is entitled to ask an advance payment of the client before commencing proceedings. The amount of the advance payment will be established through consultation with the client and the concerned lawyer. Advance payments will be settled with the final statement of expenses.
- In addition to the fee, the client may owe Wetting & De Roode Lawyers disbursements for any costs the office pays for on behalf of the client. These disbursements include court registry fees, costs of witnesses and experts, bailiff costs and costs for excerpts from public records. These disbursements will be charged in advance.
Article 3 – Subsidized legal aid
- For agreements entered into based on the legal system of subsidized legal aid (Legal Aid Board (LAB) certificate) (www.rvr.org), the client does not owe the fee to the lawyer as stated in the previous article. Instead, the client pays his/her own contribution as has been determined by the Legal Aid Board, this contribution is based on the client’s (and their partner’s) annual income and assets in the reference year (=the situation two years prior to the application date).
- When the agreement is entered into, the lawyer determines whether the client qualifies for subsidized legal aid based on the financial information the client has provided. The client is responsible for the accuracy of the (orally) supplied information.
- In the event that, after subsidized legal aid has initially been granted, the Legal Aid Board decides to withdraw this grant for any reason after the legal services have been rendered, the client must pay the full fee for the rendered services to Wetting & De Roode Lawyers with retrospective effect.
- In case the client’s financial situation changes during the course of the agreement or before a next contract, in so far that the client may qualify for subsidized legal aid after all, the client is obliged to notify the lawyer of this immediately.
- The lawyer is entitled to ask an advance payment of the client as long as the Legal Aid Board has not granted a certificate. The amount of the advance payment will be established through consultation with the concerned lawyer and the client.
- Court registry fees, and if applicable, standing charges, costs of witnesses and experts, costs for excerpts from public records, telegrams, international telex, international faxes and international phone calls and cause-list actions are not included in the expenses covered by the certificate granted by the Legal Aid Board and will be charged to the client directly.
- The Legal Aid Board certificate only applies to the services rendered by the lawyer from the date of the application onwards. Any services rendered by the lawyer prior to this date will be charged to the client in accordance with the statements in the previous article.
Article 4 - Payment
- The client is subject to payment of invoices to Wetting & De Roode Lawyers within 14 days of the date of the invoice, unless parties have agreed otherwise in writing.
- The client is not entitled to suspend their obligation to pay the invoices of Wetting & De Roode Lawyers and/or to call upon a settlement.
- After the 14 day term of payment has expired, the client is legally in default and Wetting & De Roode Lawyers is entitled to charge the client the statutory interest ex article 6:119(a) of the Dutch Civil Code over the amount due, multiplied by 1.5%, without notifying the client of this in advance.
- In the event that the client is unable to pay the due amount (in full) within the term of payment as mentioned in the first section, he must make a motivated and substantiated request for a payment arrangement before the expiration of the term of payment. In case Wetting & De Roode Lawyers consents to a payment arrangement, this arrangement will be confirmed in writing at all times.
- In case the client fails to fulfil one or more of his obligations to Wetting & De Roode Lawyers, all reasonable costs for obtaining payment out of court will be charged to the client, these costs consist of at least 15% of the claim, with a minimum amount of €150, -.
- Included in the notion of reasonable costs for obtaining payment out of court are extrajudicial collection costs as made by Wetting & De Roode Lawyers, such as sending out reminders, summons for payment (by telephone) and potentially setting up a payment arrangement. These incurred costs will be calculated based on the hourly rate as has been agreed on or based on the usual hourly rate of the lawyer concerned in the agreement.
- In case the client is in default regarding payment, the concerned lawyer retains the right to suspend the performance of proceedings on behalf of the client, in addition to potentially charging collection fees as mentioned in the previous sections.
- Wetting & De Roode Lawyers retains the right to hold on to all papers, including those papers regarding an agreement that the unpaid invoice does not relate to, until the moment payment has taken place.
Article 5 – Liability
- Any liability of Wetting & De Roode Lawyers for damages arising out of or relating to an attributable failure or a wrongful act, or that are based on any other principle of justice, is limited to the amount paid out under the professional liability insurance of Wetting & De Roode Lawyers, plus the amount of the deductible that is to be paid by Wetting & De Roode Lawyers according to this policy.
- All claims of the client expire twelve months after the moment in which the client became acquainted with or could reasonably have become acquainted with the existence of these collection rights or other rights or powers.
- If, for any reason, the professional liability insurance company declines to provide payment, any liability is limited to the amount of the legal fee as charged for the execution of the concerned engagement with a maximum amount of €5.000,00.
- Wetting & De Roode Lawyers is never to be held liable for damages when the client is able to appeal to a third party or their own insurance company for compensation of the damages as referred to in these general terms and conditions.
Article 6 – Intellectual property rights
- The client is not permitted to disclose and/or exploit or duplicate with or without the involvement of third parties, any pieces of advice, contracts or other products of that nature as produced by or on behalf of Wetting & De Roode Lawyers without having obtained written permission in advance.
Article 7- Complaints and disputes
- In case of complaints and/or disputes, clients may express their objections in accordance with the office’s complaint arrangement that can be found on the website www.wettingenderoode.nl
- Wetting & De Roode Lawyers participates in the Complaints and Dispute Settlement Scheme for the Legal Profession of the Dutch National Bar Council.
- All disputes as a result of the establishment and/or execution of services by Wetting & De Roode Lawyers, including all invoice disputes, will be resolved in accordance with the Legal Profession Disputes Committee Rules. By entering into an agreement with Wetting & De Roode Lawyers, the client accepts the applicability of the Complaints and Dispute Settlement Scheme for the Legal Profession of the Dutch National Bar Council.
Article 8 – Final Provisions
- All legal agreements are governed exclusively by Dutch Law.
- The court in The Hague is firstly exclusively qualified to be informed of any dispute arising out of the legal agreement and/or these general terms and conditions between Wetting & De Roode Lawyers and the client. Nevertheless, Wetting & De Roode Lawyers retains the right to present disputes to a qualified judge in the client’s place of residence or domicile.
- These altered general terms and conditions are valid from 1st February 2016.