Sample Retainer Agreement | Tamir Litigation Law Firm | Ontario

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In Ontario, all Contingency Retainer Agreements must contain certain clauses as per  Solicitors Act, RSO 1990 c.S. 15 and Ont Reg 195/04

I,      [Name]                                    , hereby retain Tamir Litigation Law Firm to represent me with respect to the injuries I have sustained in a motor vehicle accidents of [Date]


This retainer applies to both tort and accident benefits files.                              . 


I acknowledge that it was explained to me that I have several options in retaining counsel, including a retainer based on hourly fees, contingency fee as well as retainers with counsel outside this Firm.  I was explained that different counsel may have different hourly rates and that contingency fee rates may also vary.  I was also explained that I have a right to discuss these alternatives.  Notwithstanding these explanations I have chosen to retain this Firm under a Contingency Fee Agreement, subject to controls placed by the Law Society of Upper Canada and Common Law.  I confirm that I have been advised of my right to seek review of the Lawyers’ Bill by the Superior Court of Justice within the time permitted by law.


Explanation of Fees, Disbursements and Costs


A contingency basis means that we charge a percentage of the total recovery.  The percentage that we charge is (25% -33%, depending on particulars of the file) all amounts recovered on behalf of the client for injuries, damages, and losses, excluding disbursements (out-of-pocket expenses), excluding partial indemnity costs, if the matter settles before trial. 

If the matter has to go to trial, then the contingency fee will increase to 40% plus disbursements, costs and HST.  While it is our job, among other, to advise you whether your matter should in fact be taken to trial, the final decision on the issue is ultimately yours.  We will also charge the amount paid by the defendant in lieu of indemnity costs and disbursements. 

Unless otherwise ordered by a judge, in a successful resolution of the case the defendant will pay to the plaintiff a portion of the plaintiff’s legal bill (partial indemnity costs).  This is not the full amount of the legal bill but simply a contribution to it.  

So long as we act for the client and our retainer is not terminated, the Firm will carry the disbursements and will not require an upfront charge. Also please note that so long as we act for the client and the retainer is not terminated, our Firm will absorb the following client disbursements in our fee. These disbursements include costs of retaining experts, courier, taxi, photocopies, postage, long distance telephone calls, etc.

Sample calculation:

To help you understand how our percentage will be determined, we offer the following sample calculation. This sample calculation does not apply to your case; it is for illustration purposes only.

Suppose that before trial, your case is settled for the following amounts (paid as lump sums):


·       Damages plus interest:                                              $90,000

·       Costs from the defendant:                                          $10,000

·       Total:                                                                     $100,000


In this example, our fee would be 30% of the total damages and interest awarded to our client (excluding costs and disbursements).  Any amounts delivered by the defence counsel in lieu of costs and disbursements will be also deposited to the Trust account. The invoice delivered to our client would consist of the following:

Fee of X% x $100,000.00 = $X+ HST

Client Disbursements: $5,000.00 +HST (sample amount)

Amount received by us:  $X+ HST + $5000 (sample client disb)  = $X

Amount received by you:  [the difference]

It is agreed that the lawyer firm shall not recover more in fees than the client recovers as damages or receives by way of settlement.



In the event there is no recovery we do expect our clients to pay our disbursements.


What Happens on Termination of this Agreement

At any time during the course of the representation by our Firm, you or the Firm may wish to terminate this contingency fee agreement and to enter into a new retainer agreement. Such termination by either the Law Firm or you, must be in writing. In the event that either us or the client terminates this contingency fee agreement, the terms of this contingency fee agreement no longer apply to the calculation of the fees to be charged by us for the services that they have performed.

Instead, we will charge you on an hourly rate for the work that we have done and will continue to do on your behalf based on the following hourly rates as of June 1, 2010:

Anna Tamir, called to Ontario Bar in 2008: $320.00 per hour  + HST         

Law clerks and/or paralegals: $100.00 per hour +HST


These hourly rates would apply to all of the work performed on the file from the inception of the file to the completion of the file either by way of settlement or by way of a judgment after trial.   Should you decide to no longer retain the services of Anna Tamir, Barrister & Solicitor, while the matter is still ongoing, the termination of the services must be in writing and all disbursements (out-of-pocket expenses) paid by us on your behalf are immediately payable.

You will be billed by the Law Firm for all services performed up to and including the date of termination of the retainer in accordance with the hours or portions thereof performed by the various members of our Firm based on the hourly rates referred to above. Until such time as all bills, accounts, disbursements and expenses have been paid by you, our Firm retains a solicitor’s lien on your file and will only release your file to a new solicitor upon satisfactory arrangements being made for protection of and payment of the accounts of the Firm from any settlement or judgment after trial.


What Happens if There is No Recovery: You Don’t Pay Anything Towards our Fees 

It is agreed that if no money is recovered by settlement or judgment, no fees for the work we performed on your file shall be charged or billed to you. However, in the event that costs of the other parties are awarded against you, those costs are solely the responsibility of you, the client, and not the responsibility of our Firm.

We will also expect you to pay our disbursements. The latter would include money we pay to the third parties, i.e., for medical records and experts’ reports, court filing fees as well accounts for more mundane items such as photocopies, postage, long distance charges, mileage, etc.  Of course, we are also required to charge HST on most of our disbursements.

We will discuss with you at different times during the litigation, whether there is any chance of the case being lost and no recovery obtained.


Payment of Settlement or Judgment Proceeds

In executing the within contingency fee agreement you direct all the funds recovered by the way of settlement or Judgment be paid to Anna Tamir, Barrister & Solicitor, in trust, and that all amounts for legal fees, costs, taxes and disbursements shall be paid to the Firm from the funds held in the Firm’s account.

Execution of this Agreement

In executing the within Contingency Fee Retainer Agreement, you, the client, acknowledge

that you have chosen to execute the within document willingly and voluntarily without undue influence or coercion of any sort. You further confirm by executing the within Contingency Fee Agreement that you understand all of the terms and conditions contained herein and have had an opportunity to review same before signing.  




_____________________________             ______________________________

Client’s name, address and a Tel No                    Witness




_____________________________             ______________________________

Counsel                                                           Witness


Dated in  



The Client acknowledges receipt of a duplicate copy of this contingency fee retainer agreement signed by all parties.                          

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Tamir Litigation Law Firm

600 - 95 Mural Street

Richmond Hill, ON  L4B 3G2

Tel.: 416. 499.1676

Mon - Fri:  9 am to 6 pm

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