Micro Management

I think people assume that I embellish things here for dramatic effect. Perhaps, they ponder, he uses a once-in-a-crab-season anecdote and repeats it time and again, unfairly to pillory the LAA.

Now it is true that I have mentioned assessment arguments over a £4.10 routine letter previously. Today, however, this has once again presented itself as a cloud in an otherwise clear blue sky.

This is a single, standard fee case chosen, at random, by the National Audit Office. The NAO seem, again, to be assessing the assessors. Historically we have fought, even over a single letter, to the bitter end, today it is genuinely an “administrative letter” which should not have featured in the final bill.

Of course its inclusion is neither here nor there, having no impact whatsoever on the Standard Fee the firm have correctly claimed.

Alongside this is a refusal to pay a £13 taxi fare because the cabbies handwriting of the date is not very clear. We are going to fight this one because disbursement vouchers are not even required on payments under £20.

This process has involved admin time at the firm, the LAA, the NAO and now even for the firms Contract Manager (who is copied in on final reports). Oh and now we are involved confirming the position on under £20 disbursements; Cost Assessment Guidance 2013, S. 3.1, if you are interested.

End result – claim indisputably properly made.

Perhaps if they had spent a bit more time on MoJ Tagging Contracts

PS – Our clients, like you, do not have the option to “refuse to participate in a forensic audit”. Just 14 days to deliver the files.

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