We are committed to providing a high-quality legal service to all our clients. When something goes wrong, we need our clients to tell us about it. This will help improve our standards. Whenever possible, please raise any initial client care problems with the person acting on your case to give them the opportunity of resolving matters with you. Often, matters can be quickly resolved in this way.
If you are unhappy about any aspect of the service you have received, or about the bill, please contact Kirsten Collings, Partner, by post to our office at 15 BERNARD STREET, GLOSSOP, SK13 7AA, telephone 01457 859 123 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Kirsten Collings is the Complaints Officer and will deal with all complaints in the first instance. It may be necessary to have your complaint investigated by a Partner, depending upon the nature of your complaint. We have a procedure in place which details how we handle complaints as follows:
1. We will send you a letter acknowledging receipt of your complaint within three days of receiving it, enclosing a copy of this procedure.
2. We will investigate your complaint and determine who is best placed to investigate it based on the nature of the complaint. For example, if this is a complaint relating to a Criminal Defence matter then this will normally involve passing your complaint to our Kirsten Collings, who will review your matter file and speak to the member of staff who acted for you. If your compliant directly relates to a Partner then your complaint will be investigated by another Partner.
3. We will then invite you to a meeting to discuss and hopefully resolve your complaint. We will do this within 14 days of sending you the acknowledgement letter.
4. Within three days of that meeting we will write to you to confirm what took place and to set out any solutions that have been agreed with you.
5. If you do not want a meeting, or it is not possible, you will be sent a detailed written reply to your complaint, including the suggestions for resolving the matter, within 21 days of sending you the acknowledgement latter.
6. At this stage, if you are still not satisfied, you should contact us again and we will arrange for another Partner within the firm to review the decision.
7. We will write to you within 14 days of receiving your request for a review, confirming our final position on your complaint and explaining our reasons.
8. If you are still not satisfied with our handling of your complaint you can ask the Legal Ombudsman to consider the complaint. We would hope that this does not become necessary and that we can resolve matters between ourselves. Contact details are as follows:
Normally, you will need to bring a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman within six months of receiving a final written response from us about your complaint and within the following timescales:
a) Six years from the date of the act or omission about which you are complaining occurring, or
b) Three years from the date you should reasonably have known there were grounds for complaint.
The Legal Ombudsman will not accept complaints where the act or date of awareness was before 6th October 2010.
9. If we have to change any of the above timescales we will let you know and explain why. Alternative complaints bodies (such as ProMediate and Small Claims Mediation) exist which are competent to deal with complaints about legal services should both you and our firm consent to use such a scheme. In the event that you wish to use an alternative complaint body you should advise us and we will then state if we agree. The procedure above also applies to complaints arising concerning our bill. There may also be a right to object to the bill by applying to the court for an assessment of the bill under Part III of the Solicitors Act 1974; The Legal Ombudsman may not consider a complaint about a bill if you have applied to the Court for assessment of that bill.
What to do if you are unhappy with our behaviour
The Solicitors Regulation Authority 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 Solicitors Regulation Authority