Liberant Lawyers always make  clear agreements about fees and expenses  at the very beginning . You can ask at any time how much you already owe and what costs and fees you can still expect.

We also believe in the right to assistance for everyone, including those who cannot afford a lawyer. If you meet the legal conditions for free legal aid   (= pro bono lawyer), the Liberant lawyers can assist you free of charge in any case they accept and in the specialisation in which they are volunteer.

1. Information

The lawyer will inform the client promptly about the execution of his instructions and about the progress of the case.

The client will promptly provide all useful information to the lawyer during the entire duration of the assignment, if necessary at the request of the lawyer.

2. Appeal to third parties

2.1. In addition to the usual duties performed by the lawyer, the client agrees that the lawyer, under the responsibility of the latter, can call on other lawyers for the performance of his assignment for specific assignments.

2.2. If it is necessary for the execution of the assignment to call on a bailiff or a translator, the client leaves the choice to the lawyer.

2.3. The lawyer will only appeal to other third parties, such as notaries, experts or accountants, chosen in consultation with the client, with the express consent of the client.

3. Costs and fees

3.1. The invoice from BV Liberant advocaten can contain three elements:

  • the lawyer's fees
  • the administrative office expenses
  • court costs and external expenditure

3.2. The fee is the compensation for the services actually provided by the lawyer.

3.2.1. The fee is calculated according to an hourly rate.

Liberant lawyers have a rate of € 125.00 / hour excluding 21% VAT. Contrary to this rate, a lower or higher special hourly rate may be agreed upon by mutual agreement, depending on the importance and the nature of the matter. This agreement is always confirmed in writing at the start. The statement in the commission invoice counts as a written confirmation of this agreement.

In derogation from this, Tom DE MEESTER applies - except for other specific agreements - an hourly rate of 150.00 € / hour excluding 21 VAT.

A detailed timesheet will always be kept and presented together with the invoice to the client with the hours and minutes per actual performance. The fees will at least amount to any statutory legal compensation granted by the court.

3.2.2. Instead of the calculation according to the hourly rate, a calculation can be agreed by mutual agreement, depending on the value of the lawsuit:

  • from 0 to 6200 € x 15% = 930.00 €
  • from € 6,201 to € 50,000 x 10% = € 4,379.90
  • from € 50,001 to € 124,000 x 8% = € 5,919.92
  • from € 124,001 to € 248,000 x 6% = € 7,439.94
  • more than € 248,000 x 4%

In that case, the fee will be calculated on the basis of the amount actually recovered. The fees will at least amount to the legal compensation awarded. In the event that a recovery cannot be obtained due to the insolvency of the counterparty or because the client wishes to cease execution, the fee will be calculated on the performances actually delivered at the hourly rate as descibred under paragraph 3.2.1, unless another hourly rate has been agreed.

3.2.3. Instead of the calculation according to the hourly rate, depending on the nature of the case, a calculation can be charged on a fixed fee per performance, by mutual agreement. This fixed fee and performance will be confirmed in writing at the start. If additional  services are provided at the request of the client, these will be charged on the basis of the hourly rate as provided in article 3.2.1.

3.2.4. The fees described above are exclusive of VAT. The lawyer must collect this VAT and transfer it to the Belgian State. The fees and administrative costs will be increased by VAT at the applicable rate (21%, subject to exemption or second-line assistance). .

3.3. The administrative costs of the office are calculated as follows:

  • costs for correspondence: letters, faxes and procedural documents: € 10.00 per document
  • correspondence by e-mail: 5.00 € by e-mail
  • BV Liberant advocaten always makes clear agreements about fees and costs at the start. You can ask at any time how much you already owe and what costs and fees you can still expect.

    We also believe in the right to assistance for everyone, including those who cannot afford a lawyer. If you meet the legal conditions for free second-line assistance (= pro bono lawyer), the Liberant lawyers can assist you free of charge in any case they accept and in the special matter in which they are volunteer.

    1. Information

    The lawyer will inform the client promptly about the execution of his assignment and about the progress of the handling of the case.

    The client will promptly provide all useful information to the lawyer during the entire duration of the assignment, if necessary at the request of the lawyer.

    2. Appeal to third parties

    2.1. In addition to the usual duties performed by the lawyer, the client agrees that the lawyer, under the responsibility of the latter, can call on other lawyers for the performance of his assignment for specific assignments.

    2.2. If it is necessary for the execution of the assignment to call on a bailiff or a translator, the client leaves the choice to the lawyer.

    2.3. The lawyer will only appeal to other third parties, such as notaries, experts or accountants, chosen in consultation with the client, with the express consent of the client.

    3. Costs and fees

    3.1. The invoice from BV Liberant advocaten can contain three elements:

    the lawyer's fees the administrative costs of the office court costs and external expenditure 3.2. The fee is the compensation for the services actually provided by the lawyer.

    3.2.1. The fee is calculated according to hourly rate.

    Liberant lawyers have a rate of € 125.00 / hour excluding 21% VAT. Contrary to this rate, a lower or higher special hourly rate may be agreed upon by mutual agreement, depending on the matter and the nature of the matter. This agreement is always confirmed in writing at the start. The statement in the commission invoice counts as written confirmation of this agreement.

    In derogation from this, Tom DE MEESTER applies - except for other specific agreements - an hourly rate of 150.00 € / hour excl. 21 VAT.

    A detailed timesheet will always be kept and presented together with the invoice to the client with the hours and minutes per performance actually performed. The fees will at least amount to any statutory legal compensation granted.

    3.2.2. Instead of the calculation according to the hourly rate, a calculation can be agreed by mutual agreement, depending on the amounts recovered:

    from 0 to 6200 € x 15% = 930.00 € from € 6,201 to € 50,000 x 10% = € 4,379.90 from € 50,001 to € 124,000 x 8% = € 5,919.92 from € 124,001 to € 248,000 x 6% = € 7,439.94 more than € 248,000 x 4% In that case, the fee will be calculated on the basis of the amount actually recovered. The fees will at least amount to the legal compensation awarded. In the event that a recovery cannot be obtained due to the insolvency of the counterparty or because the client wishes to cease execution, the fee will be calculated on the performance actually delivered at the hourly rate of € 125.00 unless another hourly rate has been agreed.

    3.2.3. Instead of the calculation according to the hourly rate, depending on the nature of the case, a calculation can be charged on a fixed fee per performance, by mutual agreement. This fixed fee and performance will be confirmed in writing at the start. If other services are provided at the request of the client, these will be charged on the basis of the hourly rate as provided in article.

    3.2.4. The fees described above are exclusive of VAT. The lawyer must collect this VAT and transfer it to the Belgian State. The fees and administrative costs will be increased by VAT at the applicable rate (21%, subject to exemption or second-line assistance). .

    3.3. The administrative costs of the office are calculated as follows:

    costs of secretariat and correspondence: letters, faxes and procedural documents: € 10.00 per document correspondence by e-mail: 5.00 € by e-mail displacement costs: 0.40 € / km

3.4. The court costs and external expenses are the costs that the lawyer himself has has to advance for the client to third parties, such as the bailiff, the registry, translators and public authorities. These costs are stated precisely and in detail in the invoice of costs and fees.  

3.5. The lawyer may request one or more retainers before the commencement of the assignment and during the handling of the case. A retainer is the lump sum that the client pays to the lawyer, prior to a detailed statement of fees and charges. 21% VAT must also be charged on fees and administrative costs in the retainer invoices.

In the (final) invoice, the retainers paid are deducted from the total amount of fees and costs. If there is reason to do so, the lawyer can ask the client to pay a retainer for advanced expenses. Under the legal conditions, no VAT will be charged on such a commission until the commission is used by the lawyer to pay his state of fees and costs in whole or in part.

3.6. The client must pay the requested commissions and the (final) invoices within fourteen days after sending them. The lawyer may, if this is necessary for the proper provision of services or in view of the situation of the client, set a shorter payment term. The lawyer can also allow longer payment terms and payment by installments after  request by the client. If the requested retainer has not been paid within the foreseen term, the lawyer can immediately suspend the services until full payment of the outstanding amount. He will notify the client of this.

3.7. If the client does not agree with the requested commission or the (final) invoice, he must protest this in writing within fourteen days of receipt. The lawyer will then check the invoice again as soon as possible and answer the protest.

3.8. After a written reminder to pay the outstanding retainer or invoice and in the absence of justified protest, the client owes interest on the outstanding balance equal to the statutory interest rate from the date of the reminder.

4. Third party funds

4.1. Third party funds  are amounts that the lawyer receives for his client from third parties. The lawyer transfers all amounts he receives in this way to his client in the shortest possible time. If the lawyer cannot transfer an amount immediately, he will notify the client of the receipt of the amount and inform him of the reason why the amount has not been paid.

4.2. The lawyer may deduct sums from the amounts he receives on behalf of the client to cover the outstanding retainer  invoices or invoices for fees and costs. He informs the client of this in writing. This provision is without prejudice to the client's right to contest the lawyer's invoices and to claim payment of these withheld amounts.

4.3. The fact that the lawyer withholds outstanding commission invoices or invoices for fees and costs from such amounts does not change the client's obligation to pay the VAT due thereon, and this via separate payment to the lawyer, insofar as the third-party funds in question are insufficient. would be to pay the full amount of VAT due.

4.4. The lawyer immediately transfers all amounts he receives from the client on behalf of third parties to these third parties.

5. Liability

5.1. The lawyers of BV Liberant advocaten act in the name and on behalf of this company. Therefore, they cannot be held individually liable.

They are insured for their professional liability for an amount of € 2,500,000.00 per claim. They are insured with AMLIN Insurance SE via Vanbreda Risk & Benefits with policy number LXX034899.

Insurance certificate Tom De Meester Insurance certificate Marc Buyens Insurance certificate Leslie Roelants The client is hereby informed that for the specific treatment of his case, subject of the agreement, a higher insurance can be taken out, subject to prior request and provided that the client pays the additional premium.

5.2. In the absence of such explicit question as described under 5.1, the client accepts that the ordinary insurance of the lawyer is sufficient and accepts that the compensation of any damage he would suffer as a result of a professional error of the lawyer is limited to the amount of € 2,500,000.00 for which the lawyer is insured.

5.3. If the professional liability insurer does not cover the damage for whatever reason, the compensation based on a professional error by the lawyer is limited in principal, costs and interest to an amount of € 2,500.00.

6. Termination of the agreement

6.1 The client can terminate the agreement at any time by notifying the lawyer in writing. The lawyer transfers his final invoice of fees and costs and fees to the client, taking into account his performance until the termination of the agreement. The lawyer cannot claim compensation for the  termination of the agreement.

6.2 At first request the lawyer will return the documents of the file to the client. The documents of the file will be kept by the lawyer for a statutory period of 5 years after the last performance or formally closure  the file, whichever comes first, unless the client requests otherwise.

6.3 The lawyer can terminate the agreement at any time by notifying the client in writing. In determining the moment at which he ceases to perform, the lawyer must take into account the possibility for the client to obtain the necessary assistance from another lawyer in good time.

7. Data processing

7.1. The client agrees to the collection and processing of all useful personal data and information, for the entire duration of the assignment and also thereafter for at least 5 years after the file has been closed or until you request that this data be deleted. The processing of this data is necessary for the execution of an agreement with the lawyer and to protect the vital and legitimate interests of the client. The data will only be processed for this purpose.

7.2. The lawyer ensures that the processing of the data will be minimal, proper and transparent. This means that the lawyer will only have the data that is necessary for the agreed purpose, that he supervises the proper security and storage of this data and that he will always inform the client transparently about this processing. This information can only be communicated to third parties insofar as this is strictly necessary for the execution of the assignment as a lawyer. This information will only be communicated in court or administrative proceedings to courts and other judicial authorities or governments, counterparties or their lawyers and only to the extent that this is in the interest of the client.

7.3. On simple request, the client can consult the register for processing data.

7.4 With regard to personal data, the client has:

  • the right to information, including the right (of course free of charge) to obtain a copy of the personal data processed
  • the right of inspection
  • the right to rectification
  • the rght to deletion / erasure and withdrawal of his consent to the processing of the data
  • the right to object 
  • the right to the transfer of his data 

7.5 Liberant advocaten BV works via the integrated lawyer software Kleos. The data is safed on a private cloud, with a protection that corresponds almost to banking security, ISO 27001 certified (daily backups, recovery tests, ...).

7.6. The internal data protection officer is Tom DE MEESTER. The client can contact him for all questions or complaints regarding the processing of the personal data (contact demeester@liberant.be).

7.7. The client can also address any complaints to the supervisory authority (Data Protection Authority: Drukpersstraat 35, 1000 Brussels 32 (0) 2 274 48 00 commission@privacycommission.be).

8. Applicable law and disputes

Belgian law is exclusively applicable.

Parties prefer to settle their disputes amicably. Prior to each procedure, they preferably have the case summoned to an amicable settlement in court or before an authorized body with the Bar Association. Only the courts of the judicial district of Antwerp, Antwerp department, are competent in first instance to take cognizance of any disputes.

9. Identity

BV Liberant advocaten is a Belgian Private Limited Company registered in the Register for Belgian Companies  number 0687.781.666. Its registered office is located at B-2018 Antwerp, Lange Lozanastraat 24.