Complaints Procedure

Complaints Procedure

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 at any point you become unhappy with the service we provide to you, then please inform us immediately so that we can do our best to resolve the problem for you. You can obtain a copy of our complaints procedure from a member of staff or please call 01256 630080. If we are unable to resolve your complaint then you can have the complaint independently looked at by the Legal Ombudsman.

The Legal Ombudsman investigates complaints about service issues with lawyers. The Legal Ombudsman expects complaints to be made to them within one year of the date of the act or omission about which you are concerned or within one year of you realising there was a concern. You must also refer your concerns to the Legal Ombudsman within six months of our final response to you.

We have a procedure in place which details how we handle complaints as follows:

  • We will send you a letter acknowledging receipt of your complaint within two working days of receiving it. We will enclose a copy of this procedure if you have not already been supplied with a copy.
  • We will investigate your complaint. This will normally involve passing your complaint to one of our Directors Natasha Atkins, who will review your matter file and speak to the member of staff who acted for you. In the event of Mrs Atkins absence, or if the complaint is regarding Mrs Atkins, the complaint will be dealt with by another Director of the firm.
  • If required we may invite you to a meeting in person or over the telephone if we require any further information or have the need to discuss the matter with you further.
  • Within four weeksof the date of our receipt of the complaint we will write to you to confirm the details of our investigation and set out our decision taking into account any solution which may have been agreed with you if we have discussed the complaint.
  • At this stage, if you are still not satisfied, you should contact us again and we will arrange for a third partyto review the decision.
  • 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.
  • 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:
    PO Box 6167
    SL1 0EH
  • 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.
  • 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.

You also have the right to make a report to the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) in the event your complaint relates to;

  • A breach of a Principle of the SRA Standards and Regulations 2019 and/or;
  • Allegations of dishonesty or discrimination.To make a report, you can either view the SRA page here or contact the SRA directly at:
    Solicitors Regulation Authority
    The Cube, 199 Wharfside Street
    Birmingham, B1 1RN

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