I read the letter from Michael Moore claiming that solicitors need to pay referral fees for financial survival. I disagree (see [2009] Gazette, 26 November, 9).

I have been a practising solicitor and the senior partner of this firm for over 60 years. During the whole of this period, we have never paid a referral fee. Not only have we not found it necessary to do so to be profitable, but, as a matter of principle, we wish only to have clients come to us because of the quality of our work.

Our office procedures require that a record is made of the reason why the client came to us in every new matter that we undertake. This shows that the majority are existing clients coming back to us, or recommendations by them to new clients. But we do receive recommendations from others (including estate agents and accountants, and even other solicitors), though only on the basis of the quality of our work and what they regard as being in the best interest of the recommended client.

John Gurney-Champion, Gurney-Champion & Co, Portsmouth