The Coronavirus pandemic is undoubtedly the single greatest challenge many of us will have seen to hit the legal sector. Whilst many criminal defence firms have closed, here at Birketts we have spent the past few weeks working around the clock to ensure that we have the necessary facilities in place to be able to continue to deliver the very highest levels of service to all of our new and existing clients.
We are very pleased to confirm that our Regulatory & Corporate Defence Team, lead by Partner (Barrister) Matthew Gowen, have completed successful home working trials and the shift from working in the office to our own homes is complete.
We have considered each element of criminal defence and are ready to deal with all stages of an investigation, be that a police station interview or a remote hearing before the magistrates’ court or crown court. We have utilised appropriate technology and adapted our processes to provide innovative solutions to potential obstacles before they arise, such as liaising with police officers to ensure a presence via Skype/Microsoft Teams during police station interviews, as opposed to relying purely on telephone advice.
We also have excellent relationships and links with the local courts; whilst many are operating with a reduced workload, certain cases are still progressing. We are able to deal with road traffic offences by liaising with the court; there are obvious benefits to having these matters concluded at this time. The situation is moving very fast and our advice is that you contact us before any court hearing so that we can advise in relation to your particular hearing and whether you need to attend.
We are aware that during these difficult times financial constraints may be in place. We can provide a detailed quote and many cases can be dealt with on a fixed fee basis to provide certainty and transparency.
We are proactive in considering ways of protecting our clients in this extraordinary environment. We are committed to ensuring the safety of our staff and colleagues and will continue to review our procedures in line with Government and Public Health England guidelines. However, we would like to reassure all our clients and intermediaries that, whilst it is not quite a case of ‘business as usual’ we are nevertheless still committed to acting in the best interests of our clients.
The content of this article is for general information only. It is not, and should not be taken as, legal advice. If you require any further information in relation to this article please contact the author in the first instance. Law covered as at April 2020.