Our complaints policy
We are committed to providing a high standard of service to all our clients and to dealing with all our clients fairly. If unfortunately, you should have reason to complain about our service, we aim to resolve the matter between us speedily. In the first instance, it would be helpful if you contact the partner responsible for your matter to discuss your concerns so that he or she will do everything possible to address your concerns. If this does not resolve matters, we have the following procedure which is designed to achieve a satisfactory outcome for you.
Our complaints procedure
In the event that you are unable to resolve the issue with the partner responsible for your matter, please address your concerns (including any concerns about our charges) to our Complaints Partner, David Draisey. You can contact him at our offices (details above) or by email at: email@example.com.
Please note that if we have issued a bill for work that we have done on the matter and all or some of the bill is not paid, we may be entitled to charge interest on the amount outstanding.
To help our Complaints Partner understand your complaint, please provide:
- Your full name and contact details
- Full details of your complaint
- The outcome you hope to achieve as a result of your complaint, and
- Your file reference number (if you have one and you know what it is).
We will not charge for investigating and responding to your complaint.
What will happen next
- We will record your complaint in our central Register of Complaints. We will investigate the complaint by reviewing the file and any other relevant documents. We will most likely speak with the person who dealt with your matter.
- We will acknowledge your complaint in writing within three working days of receiving it and will enclose a copy of this procedure for your reference.
- We may also need to ask you for further information or documents. If so, we will ask you to provide the information within a specific period of time.
- We will update you on the progress of your complaint at appropriate times.
- We may also, if appropriate, invite you to a meeting to discuss your complaint as this is often a very good way to understand and deal with problems. However, you do not have to attend such a meeting if you are unable or do not wish to do so. We will be happy to discuss the matter with you by telephone.
- We will write to you at the end of our investigation to advise you of the outcome. Where appropriate we will outline what we have done and what we propose to do to resolve your complaint. We will write to you within 21 days of our acknowledgement of your complaint. If we are unable to meet this timescale, we will write to you to explain why this is so.
- Where a complaint is found to be justified, the actions we take may include: an offer of apology; a reduction in our charges; or other redress which we hope will be acceptable to you.
What if I am not satisfied with the outcome?
If you are not satisfied with our determination of your complaint, please let us know as soon as possible and our Complaints Partner (or another partner) will review the matter further and will respond to you within 14 working days.
If you are still not satisfied following our review, you may ask the Legal Ombudsman to consider your complaint. The Legal Ombudsman’s details are:
The Legal Ombudsman
PO Box 6806,
Wolverhampton WV1 9WJ
- Telephone: 0300 555 0333
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
You must usually refer your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman within six months of our final written response to your complaint and within one year of the date of the act or omission about which you are complaining (or within one year from the date when you should have known that there was a cause for complaint). The Legal Ombudsman service is free of charge and is intended for use by individuals,small businesses, charities and trustees, etc. The Ombudsman will not usually consider a complaint unless our firm has first been given the opportunity to resolve it. We have eight weeks within which to deal with your complaint and provide our final written response. Complaints about a bill may not be considered if the bill has been challenged for assessment under Part III of the Solicitors Act 1974. Further details of the service and the types of complaints handled by the Ombudsman can be found at: www.legalombudsman.org.uk.
Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) for consumers
Alternative complaints bodies exist, such as ProMediate (www.promediate.co.uk), which are competent to deal with complaints about legal services should both you and our firm wish to use such a scheme. We have, however, chosen not to adopt an ADR process and therefore if you wish to complain further, you should contact the Legal Ombudsman.
What to do if you are unhappy with our behaviour
The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) can help if you are concerned about our behaviour. This could be for things like dishonesty, taking or losing your money or treating you unfairly because of your age, a disability or other characteristic. Visit their website to see how you can raise your concerns with the SRA (www.sra.org.uk/consumers/problems/report-solicitor/).