Complaints Handling Policy
We are committed to providing a high-quality legal service to all our clients. When something goes wrong, we need you to tell us about it. This will help us to improve our standards.
We will always try and resolve any issues with you directly as they are raised. However, if you have a complaint, which you have not been able to resolve with the person within the firm who is responsible for the day to day conduct of the matter, you can raise it with our Compliance Officer Legal Practice (“COLP”) by writing to Giles Bevan-Thomas, postal address: 8 Newbury Street, Andover, SP10 1DW, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by telephone on 01264 400500.
What will happen next?
- We will send you a letter acknowledging receipt of your complaint normally within three days of receiving it, enclosing a copy of this procedure for ease of reference.
- We will then investigate your complaint. This will normally involve our COLP (or another representative of the Firm deputising for him) reviewing your matter file and speaking to the member of staff who acted for you.
- The COLP (or his deputy) may want to discuss the issues with you and hopefully resolve your complaint. In this case, the COLP will invite you to a meeting within 14 days of sending you the acknowledgement letter.
- Within seven days of the meeting, the COLP will write to you to confirm what took place and any solutions he has agreed with you.
- If you do not want a meeting or it is not possible, the COLP will send you a detailed written reply to your complaint, including his suggestions for resolving the matter, within 28 days of sending you the acknowledgement letter.
- If we have to change any of the timescales above, we will let you know and explain why.
- If your complaint is upheld, possible remedies may include an apology, part or full refund, offering to complete the matter without charge, or any combination of the above.
- If you are not satisfied with our response, or we have been unable to resolve your concerns within 8 weeks of your initial complaint, you can refer your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman.
- You may contact the Legal Ombudsman:
- By phone on 0300 555 0333
- By email at email@example.com or
- By post at PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton, WV1 9WJ
Any complaint to the Legal Ombudsman must usually be made:
- within six years of the date of the act or omission; or
- three years from when the complainant should reasonably have known there was cause for complaint (if the act or omission took place more than six years ago); and
- within six months of the date of our final response on your complaint.
For further information on making a complaint please refer to the Legal Ombudsman website at www.legalombudsman.org.uk.
- If your complaint is about your bill, you may have the right to apply to the court for an assessment of the bill under Part III of the Solicitors Act 1974. If you wish to take advantage of this procedure you should be aware that strict time limits apply and the Legal Ombudsman may not consider a complaint about a bill if you have applied to the court for an assessment.
- Alternative complaint bodies exist (such as Pro Mediate UK) which are competent to deal with complaints about legal services should both you and the Firm wish to use such a scheme. We do not agree to use such a scheme due to the existence of the Legal Ombudsman.
- The Legal Ombudsman deals with service issues. If you are concerned about our conduct or behaviour rather than our service, your complaint should be addressed to the Solicitors Regulation Authority.