The Halifax Legal Express website ("the Website") is provided on behalf of Bank of Scotland plc, Halifax Division, by Epoq Legal Ltd ("ELL"), company number 3707955, whose registered office is at Middlesex House, 29-45 High Street, Edgware, Middlesex, HA8 7UU. "Halifax Legal Express" is a trading name of Bank of Scotland plc whose registered office is at The Mound, Edinburgh, EH1 1YZ.
Reference to "our" and "we" in the Website with regard to the provision of a particular User Service is a reference to the applicable provider of the User Service. Please see the section of these terms and conditions headed "Who Provides the User Services" for details of who provides each User Service.
These terms and conditions (and all communications) are in English and governed by and will be construed in accordance with English Law and the English courts shall have jurisdiction in any legal proceedings.
Using the Website
The Website is for use only in relation to legal issues in the jurisdiction of England & Wales unless expressly stated otherwise.
The content of the Website is provided for information only, and does not constitute advice or a recommendation to you that the products and services provided or advertised on the Website are suitable for you in your circumstances.
Reasonable efforts will be made to keep the Website available for use; however access is not guaranteed to be available all the time. We will not be liable for any periodic unavailability of the Website.
Due to the nature of the Internet and the possibility of third party interference, the Website is not guaranteed to be free of all viruses and technical defects of any description. We will not be liable for any damage or loss caused as a result of your use of the Website.
If there are links from the Website to other websites operated by third parties, we do not guarantee you will be able to access the other websites via any link on the Website. We do not guarantee the content or accuracy of any third party's website, nor do we accept any responsibility for your use of that website.
The User Services
The following services are available on a 'pay-per-use' basis:
Document preparation services
- Self-serve (no legal advice or assistance)
- Legal Review (legal document review but excluding any amendments or redraft)
- Lawyer Service (full legal review and advice by a panel law firm)
- Referral service to a panel law firm
Who provides the User Services
Halifax Legal Express does not itself provide legal advice but Users of the Website have access to service providers who are responsible for the service that they provide to you, including any advice that you may receive from them.
The User Services are provided on the service providers' own terms and conditions. They, and not Halifax, are responsible for the service that they provide to you, including any advice you may receive from them. User Services are currently provided by the following service providers:
The Law Guide and Self-serve Document preparation service and the making of a Referral under the Referral Service:
Epoq Legal Limited ("ELL"), company number 3707955, whose registered office is at Middlesex House, 29-45 High Street, Edgware, Middlesex, HA8 7UU and they also procure the following services:
The Legal Review service used in conjunction with the Document preparation service and Legal helpline:
FirstAssist Services Ltd (registered number 1404718) registered office Marshall's Court, Marshall's Road, Sutton, Surrey, SM1 4DU ("FirstAssist");
Lawyer Service Document preparation service
The Lawyer Service is provided as part of a Limited Engagement by a panel law firm. The full terms upon which the panel law firm will provide this service to you will be set out in their terms of engagement. The meaning of "Limited Engagement" is explained in the section headed "Lawyer Service Document preparation service" below.
The Website has a facility and functionality to enable you to be referred to a panel law firm for the provision of legal advice other than pursuant to a Limited Engagement ("a Referral"). The provision of services, and the terms upon which those services are provided to you by the panel law firm pursuant to a Referral, are a contractual arrangement between you and the panel law firm. We will not have any responsibility or liability for the provision of such services. We will receive a referral fee from the panel law firm. Any such referral will comply with the Solicitors' Code of Conduct 2007.
The User Service providers may change from time to time to help maintain or improve the User Services.
Any claim in respect of breach of contract or for negligence or in any other way for the provision or failure to provide a User Service shall be against the applicable provider of the User Service.
If Halifax Legal Express, FirstAssist or ELL are held liable for any loss or damage to you for the provision of or failure to provide a User Service, such liability shall in all cases be limited to the payment of an amount not exceeding £50,000 in respect of any one claim or series of connected claims.
You acknowledge that the above exclusions and or limitations are reasonable having regard to the role of Halifax Legal Express, ELL, FirstAssist and the cost of the User Services.
More detail about User Services
The User Services currently available to users are detailed on the Website.
The Law Guide
The Law Guide is provided by ELL. It is offered free of charge to visitors to the Website. No user registration is required.
ELL does not provide legal advice. The information contained in the Law Guide is for guidance and information only and is not to be construed as advice.
Although every effort is made to ensure that the Law Guide is accurate and reflects the law at the time of use, it may or may not reflect current events or changes in the law.
Before you act or rely on the Law Guide, you should take advice. We disclaim all liability for actions taken or not taken based on the Law Guide.
Document preparation services
A "Document preparation service" means the provision by us to you of access to the System to enable you to draft a Document.
A "Document" means a legal or other document drafted by you using the System.
The "System" means the document assembly and drafting system that asks you a series of questions for the purpose of collecting relevant information and data to complete your Document.
In offering a Document Preparation Service, we do not give legal advice or purport to provide a legal service.
We do not accept any responsibility for any Document drafted by you using the System. You alone are responsible for ensuring that the answers or any information that you input into the System are correct (including information in relation to the identity of any parties or signatories, their age or capacity).
You must carefully check that the Document produced fully reflects your wishes. If it does not, you should not execute it. It is your responsibility to ensure that any Document is properly executed in accordance with any instructions that are provided to you.
Documents specify the jurisdiction in which they are suitable to be used. You should not use them in any other jurisdiction.
All Documents should be used in conjunction with proper advice as to their application and adaptation to your particular circumstances. We cannot be responsible if you use a Document without seeking proper advice as to its application and adaptation, or if you alter or amend it.
We recommend that before reusing a Document you check the Website to ensure that you have the latest version. If you do not, and we have replaced it with a revised version, we recommend that you upgrade to the latest version.
Documents completed online will be stored for a maximum period of 6 years. After this period you may not be able to obtain access to your Documents, and they may be deleted. We reserve the right to levy a reasonable recovery charge in respect of any Documents that can be recovered. If you have not logged in to the Website for a period of 12 months or more, then we reserve the right to store your documents offline and levy a reasonable recovery charge for you to access them again.
Where the Document is a Will or a trust:
Wills or trusts created by you using a Document preparation service are only suitable for use in accordance with the law of England & Wales unless expressly stated otherwise.
We have no obligation or duty to supervise the execution of any Will. You will be provided with information on how to sign your Will in accordance with the law of England & Wales or such other jurisdiction as may be appropriate, but we do not assume any responsibility for the Will being correctly executed.
In connection with any Will created by you using a Document preparation service we shall have no responsibility and will accept no liability for verifying:
- Your identity
- That you are over 18 years of age
- Your testamentary and/or mental capacity
- Whether you are or were subject to any undue influence when creating your Will
- Whether you knew, understood and approved the contents of your Will
- Whether there were or might be any actual or potential third party beneficiary(ies) who might have a claim in law against your estate.
We do not assume any responsibility nor will we accept liability for failing to provide later advice on the terms of any Will or trusts prepared using a Document preparation service should future taxation changes or any other changes in the law render their terms inappropriate. The responsibility for future reviews of the terms of your Will or trusts rests with you.
The Self-serve Document preparation service
The Self-serve Document preparation service enables you to draft a Document, but does not provide the facility (which is available with the Legal Review and Lawyer Service Document preparation services, as detailed below) for your Document to be reviewed by a lawyer.
The Self-serve Document preparation service is provided by ELL.
The Legal Review Document preparation service
The following provisions shall apply where you have used a Document preparation service to create a Document that is offered with the Legal Review service.
Once a Document has been drafted using a Document oreparation service, you may send it electronically for review. FirstAssist may contact you by telephone to clarify your requirements. When discussing a document with FirstAssist over the telephone, you must have it visible on-screen or printed out.
When FirstAssist advise you on the preparation of any Document they will exercise reasonable care in the provision of this service to you. They will perform their work as quickly as reasonably possible, but neither ELL nor FirstAssist shall be liable in respect of any failure to meet any specified deadline or completion date.
FirstAssist will endeavour to answer any questions you have sent them with your Document, review the Document for its suitability for your intended purpose, and advise you what changes you may need to make to the Document to make it suitable for your requirements. FirstAssist do not make alterations to the Document itself. Please note that FirstAssist do not proof read the data you input into the System or the Document for typographical errors. If FirstAssist consider that the Document requires substantial drafting changes to make it suitable for your requirements, they may advise you to seek bespoke advice from a Panel Firm. You will have no financial obligation to the Panel Firm unless you wish formally to instruct them. Any such referral will comply with the Solicitors' Code of Conduct 2007.
Neither ELL nor FirstAssist will have any responsibility or liability for:
- Verifying your answers or any information given by you when using a Document preparation service;
- Any alterations made by you or on your behalf to a Document once it has been returned to you by FirstAssist, unless such alteration has been approved by FirstAssist;
- Supervising or checking the due and proper execution of any Document;
- Any use of a Document outside the jurisdiction for which it is indicated to be suitable;
- Any adverse consequences if you use or rely on any Document for a purpose, or in circumstances, other than that or those indicated by you to FirstAssist for the purpose of the Legal Review without taking appropriate legal advice as to its suitability for that particular purpose or in those particular circumstances;
- Undertaking after completion of the Legal Review service any further review of any Document or providing any advice, legal or otherwise, as to the continuing effectiveness for legal, taxation or any other purpose of any Document.
If you do not use the Legal Review service within 12 months of purchase you will not be able to obtain access to it thereafter. In such circumstances we shall not have any obligation to rebate you any part of the sum you have paid us.
Lawyer Service Document preparation service
The following provisions shall apply where you have used a Document preparation service to create a Document that is offered with the Lawyer Service.
The Lawyer Service is provided as part of a Limited Engagement by a panel law firm.
A "Limited Engagement" means the provision to you of a Document Review by a panel law firm in accordance with written terms of engagement issued by the Panel Firm to you.
A "Document Review" means a panel law firm's review of, and work on, a Document drafted by you pursuant to the terms of a Limited Engagement and subject to the Service Level applicable to that Document.
The "Service Level" means the restrictions on the scope of the panel law firm's review and work specified in relation to that Document on the Website as specified in their engagement letter and/or the Website.
Once a Document has been drafted using a Document preparation service, you must send it electronically using the Website for review by the panel law firm as directed on the Website. The panel law firm may contact you by telephone or email to clarify your requirements.
When it advises you on the preparation of any Document it will exercise reasonable skill and care in the provision of this service to you in accordance with the terms of the Limited Engagement. It will perform its work as quickly as is reasonably possible, but neither the panel law firm nor ELL shall be liable in respect of any failure to meet any specified deadline or completion date.
The panel law firm's responsibility within the Service Level is, so far as it is able within the terms of their Limited Engagement, to ensure that the Document meets your reasonable requirements based on the answers you gave the System. The panel law firm shall, to the extent that this can be achieved within the Service Level:
- Review the answers you gave the System;
- Review the Document that has been produced by you using the System;
- Communicate with you by email, telephone or in person and make amendments to the Document to the extent that it, in its absolute discretion, considers appropriate, until it is satisfied that the Document meets your reasonable requirements based on the answers you gave the System.
The panel law firm will not have any responsibility or liability for:
- Verifying your answers or any information given by you when using the System;
- Proofreading for typographical errors, the data you input into the System;
- Any alterations made by you or on your behalf to the Document once it has been returned to you by the panel law firm unless such alteration has been approved by the panel law firm;
- Supervising or checking the due, proper and valid execution of any Document;
- Any use of a Document outside of the jurisdiction for which that Document is indicated to be suitable;
- Any adverse consequences if you use or rely on any Document for a purpose, or in circumstances, other than that or those indicated by you to the panel law firm without taking appropriate further legal advice from the panel law firm as to its suitability for that particular purpose or in those particular circumstances;
- Undertaking, after the completion or termination of its Limited Engagement, any further review of any Document, or providing any advice, legal or otherwise, as to the continuing effectiveness for legal, taxation or any other purpose of any Document, unless it has expressly agreed to do so under another Limited Engagement or other formal engagement.
The panel law firm will limit the time spent in undertaking the Document Review in accordance with the Service Level.
The full terms upon which the panel law firm will provide this service to you will be set out in their written terms of engagement.
If you do not use the Lawyer Service Document preparation service within 12 months of purchase you will not be able to obtain access to it thereafter. In such circumstances we shall not have any obligation to rebate you any part of the sum you have paid us.
User Services terms
Registering for User Services
In order to have access to the User Services you must register with us.
If you are an individual you must be aged 18 years or over to use the User Services.
Only when you have registered on the Website will you receive a username and password to grant you full access to the Client Area ("the Client Area") of the Website and you will be able to use all of the User Services.
The User Services are for your personal use only (except in the case of individuals on behalf of a partner, spouse or civil partner in respect of the wills service). You shall not permit any other person to have access to the User Services or Client Area or to use the User Services. You may not use (other than as is expressly or impliedly licensed), resell, reverse engineer, decompile or otherwise modify any software. If you breach this term, we can without notice revoke your username and password and refuse access to the Client Area of the Website.
We are not a firm of solicitors and do not provide solicitor services. No solicitor/client relationship is established by use of the Website. Sending or receiving information through the Website does not establish a solicitor/client relationship. Any appointed panel law firm will establish a solicitor/client relationship with you only by your acceptance of the terms of its Limited Engagement or other engagement and its subsequent confirmation of its agreement to act for you after legally required checks have been completed.
Cancellation & refunds
If you have purchased a Document preparation service, it comes with a money-back guarantee. If you are not happy with the Document you have purchased, you may contact us for a refund within 14 days of the date you purchased it, provided that, in the case of a Document purchased with either the Legal Review service or the Lawyer Service the Document has not been finally approved by FirstAssist or by a Panel Firm (as applicable).
NOTICE OF DISCLAIMER & LIMITATIONS
FOR THE AVOIDANCE OF DOUBT ANY ADVICE YOU RECEIVE IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE PARTY ADVISING YOU, WHETHER THAT IS FIRSTASSIST OR A PANEL LAW FIRM AND NEITHER HALIFAX LEGAL EXPRESS NOR ELL WILL BE RESPONSIBLE OR LIABLE FOR SUCH ADVICE.
Any claim in respect of breach of contract or for negligence or in any other way for or related to the provision or failure to provide a User Service shall be against the applicable provider of the User Service.
If ELL is held liable for any loss or damage to you for or in relation to the provision of or failure to provide a User Service, whether in contract or negligence, such liability shall in all cases be limited to the payment of an amount not exceeding £50,000 in respect of any one claim or series of connected claims.
You acknowledge that the exclusions and/or limitations in these conditions are reasonable having regard to the fact that the Website, the Law Guide, Document preparation services and the Referral Service are freely accessible and available at no or low cost.
Use of the Website and User Services is subject to the notices of ownership of intellectual property rights detailed from time to time on the Website.
All rights in the design, text, graphics and other materials on the Website are the copyright of Epoq Legal Ltd or Bank of Scotland plc.
"RAPIDOCS" and the "RAPIDOCS" logo are UK registered trademarks of Epoq Group Ltd ('EGL').
Rapidocs software featured on the Website is copyright EGL 2009. Reproduction of part or all of the content of the Website in any form is prohibited. Other software reproduced in and on the Website is copyright EGL 2009. You may not use (other than as is expressly or impliedly licensed), resell, reverse engineer, decompile or otherwise modify such software.
Copyright in the content of the Law Guide and the Documents belongs to ELL.
"Halifax Legal Express" is a trademark of Bank of Scotland plc.
We shall not be liable for any failure to provide or delay in providing any service resulting from circumstances or events outside of our control, for example due to strikes and other industrial disputes, breakdown of systems or network access, fire or explosions, or power failure.
Telephone technical support will be available in accordance with the times advertised on the Website. You may contact the helpline on the number provided from time to time. Calls may be recorded for training and monitoring purposes.
If any part of these conditions (and/or notices on the Website) is found to be invalid or unenforceable, then such part will be deemed replaced by a valid and enforceable provision that most closely matches the intent of the original part and the remainder of the provision shall continue in full force and effect.
We reserve the right to change the conditions under which the Website or any User Service is offered.
No forbearance or delay by us in enforcing the provisions of these conditions will prejudice the rights, powers or remedies available to us; and such rights, powers or remedies will be cumulative.
You may not assign, subcontract or otherwise transfer any rights or obligations under these conditions, whether in whole or in part, without our prior written consent. We shall be able to assign the benefit of all or part of the conditions to any company or other entity which is from time to time a subsidiary or a holding company within the meaning of Section 1159 of the Companies Act 2006, or an associated body corporate of Bank of Scotland plc within the meaning of Section 256 of the Companies Act 2006.
Headings in these conditions are for convenience only and shall not affect their interpretation.
These conditions represent the entire agreement between us and you shall not attempt to rely upon any prior understanding or representation, which may have been reached or made.
Your acceptance of these conditions signifies your consent and agreement to them.