Data about Costs Lawyers

We hold various types of data about the Costs Lawyer profession. We collect and analyse this data for a variety of purposes, such as:

  • understanding the nature of our regulated community, including the service that Costs Lawyers provide, the challenges they face and how they interact with consumers and the public
  • identifying areas of risk so that we can tailor our regulatory interventions accordingly
  • monitoring the diversity of the profession and barriers to entry, promotion or inclusion
  • supervising compliance with our regulatory rules
  • sharing intelligence with other organisations, such as the Association of Costs Lawyers, to help with initiatives for the benefit of Costs Lawyers and the public

Some of the data we hold is collated regularly and published on this webpage for everyone to use. If you have any questions about our data, or would like to discuss accessing other specific types of data that we might hold, please contact us.

Annual data on the Costs Lawyer profession

Each year we collect data from all Costs Lawyers about the nature of their practice. We do this by asking Costs Lawyers to complete a regulatory return when they apply for their practising certificate on an annual basis. We also hold other data about Costs Lawyers that is updated periodically and compiled with the data from the regulatory return.

Key data is published annually in a summary report. The most recent report looks at the Costs Lawyer Profession in 2023, and provides comparative data for previous years.

Diversity and inclusion data

In order to meet our obligations under the Legal Services Act 2007 to promote a strong and diverse Costs Lawyer profession, we carry out regular diversity and inclusion surveys. Since 2020, the surveys have been conducted annually with Costs Lawyers being asked to provide diversity information when applying for their practising certificate.

Data from diversity and inclusion surveys carried out between 2012 and 2019 is published in our historic report. Data from our 2020 survey is available in both the Costs Lawyer Profession in 2020 report, and our report on Diversity in the Costs Lawyer Profession in 2020 which includes comparative data.

In the last two years our diversity surveys have focused on specific issues:

We also collect diversity data from students who enrol in the Costs Lawyer Qualification. Data for the 2020 student intake and the 2021 student intake is now available.

Coronavirus impact data

As the coronavirus crisis develops, we are collecting data about the impact of the pandemic on Costs Lawyers and their clients. Data from our May 2020 survey of the profession was published in our initial coronavirus survey report.

The results of our follow-up survey, conducted in early 2021, are available in our second coronavirus survey report.

Service complaints data

We work with the Legal Ombudsman (LeO) to monitor the nature and volume of complaints made about Costs Lawyers. LeO provides us with data about open complaints on a quarterly basis. Once a complaint is determined, the outcome is published by LeO on its website. LeO’s complaints data can be accessed through its online data centre.

Personal data

When we collate and publish data about the Costs Lawyer profession, we ensure that it is anonymised and doesn’t identify individual Costs Lawyers. You can find out more about how we use your personal data prior to anonymisation, and for other purposes, in our Privacy Policy.

Research projects

In 2021 the CLSB secured funding from the Regulators’ Pioneer Fund for an innovative new project: How could Costs Lawyers reduce the costs of legal services? The CLSB, guided by its framework for good consumer outcomes and the CMA’s findings in its Market Study on legal services, looked at how regulation or legislation might help or hinder the emergence of innovative services provided by lawyers specialising in legal costs. The six month project, started in September 2021. Visit the project page for more information, and the final project report, published in June 2022.