Name: Ann Henderson
Location: Alfreton Office
Costs Drafting History: Ann began working in Legal Aid in 1999 and started her costs drafting career in 2012.
Qualifications: Non-practising Solicitor
Ann has many years’ of experience in legal aid, beginning in 1999, and started her legal career when the Green Form Scheme was in use! Ann qualified as a solicitor with Marcus Barnett solicitors in 2002 and thereafter spent 10 years with a busy North London legal aid practice, Burke Niazi solicitors, specialising in family law. She later became a member of the Law Society’s Children Panel.
In 2012 Ann retrained as a Law Costs Draftsman and in 2014, co-founded Bidwell Henderson CC Ltd and established her role as a Director of the firm and is our first point contact for Legal Aid matters. Ann has experienced first-hand the demands and pressures of legal aid billing and understands the billing process from a Fee Earner’s perspective.
Understanding the importance of attention to detail and getting it absolutely right when preparing claims to be considered by the Legal Aid Agency; Ann is meticulous in her approach and prides herself in providing a personal bespoke service with a proven track record of assisting legal aid clients reduce their rejection rates.
Ann regularly prepares complex High Costs Case Plans and advises on negotiations of High Costs Case Contracts with the Legal Aid Agency. She recognises that legal aid billing for high cost cases can be particularly challenging and failure to meet LAA deadlines can have serious financial implications for firms.
Ann also has significant experience of 6 Column Bills (Legal Aid with Inter Parties element) and undertakes negotiations and provides advice on settlement.
In an ever changing Legal Aid landscape, fewer cost drafting firms than ever are offering Legal Aid billing services but Ann understands the importance of maximising costs and frequently provides assistance and advice in relation to Assessed Bills and Claims, and Legal Aid Agency rejections.
Claim to Fame: Ann has met Prince.
“Ann Henderson is fantastic. Her knowledge of the Legal Aid Agency’s procedure, rules and guidelines is second to none. She has a huge amount of experience and as a result there doesn’t seem to be a legal aid related scenario she hasn’t come across. I have found that Ann is always extremely willing to assist with any queries I have and will go above and beyond to ensure I receive a useful, substantive response, often quoting the LAA’s Costs Assessment Guidance, very quickly. She has the knack of making everything easy to understand and follow.”
Abbie Huxley of Burke Niazi Solicitors