As required by the Council for Licensed Conveyancers we have a procedure for dealing with complaints from clients so that we can resolve as many as possible within the firm, stop complaints to the Council for Licensed Conveyancers and the Legal Ombudsman, and preserve the goodwill of the client even if things have gone wrong.
Such complaints will be dealt with sympathetically and quickly, as our reputation depends on this and it is all part of our quality of service.
WHAT IS A COMPLAINT?
A complaint is any expression of dissatisfaction, either in writing, over the telephone, or in person, which alleges the complainant has suffered (or may suffer) financial loss, distress, inconvenience, or detriment.
Clients are notified in our Term of Business letters of their right to complain.
HOW THE COMPLAINT WILL BE DEALT WITH:-
We aim to resolve any complaint you have about the service we have given you as quickly as possible. If you are unable to resolve your complaint with your initial fee earner allocated to your file, then please contact Kathryn Doogue in writing or via email at email@example.com
Once we have received a complaint, we will write to you within 7 days to explain how your complaint will be investigated, if a complete response cannot be made at the time.
We will notify you of the latest date by which a full answer to your complaint will be given and this will be no later than 28 days after we have received your complaint. If you have made the complaint verbally, either during a meeting or over the telephone, we will set out a full response of our understanding of the nature of your complaint.
The assessment of your complaint will be based upon a sufficient and fair investigation. We will explain in writing our findings and where the compliant is upheld will offer remedial action or redress. This will be actioned promptly.
If after following the review process you remain dissatisfied with any aspect of our handling of your complaint, you may directly contact the Legal Ombudsman to ask them to consider the complaint further.
For your information you can contact the Legal Ombudsman via the following methods: –
- Telephone: 0300 555 0333
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: http://www.legalombudsman.org.uk/
- Address: Legal Ombudsman, PO Box 6806 Wolverhampton WV1 9WJ
Unless the Legal Ombudsman agrees there are good reasons not to do so, the Legal Ombudsman will expect you to allow us to consider and respond to your complaint in accordance with the procedure set out above in the first instance. You can refer your complaint up to 6 months after you have received our final written response to your complaint. You can also use the Ombudsman if we have not resolved your complaint within 8 weeks of us receiving it. A complaint can be referred to the Legal Ombudsman up to six years from the date of the act or omission or up to 3 years after discovering a problem. The Ombudsman deals with service related complaints; any conduct related complaints will be referred to the Council for Licensed Conveyancers
The Ombudsman deals with service related complaints and any conduct related complaints will be referred to the Council for Licensed Conveyancers.
You also have the right to use an alternative complaints body, such as, Small Claims Mediation – www.small-claims-mediation.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 do not agree to use an Alternative Complaints Body.
REMEDIES OPEN TO THE CLIENT:-
If we feel that the complaint is justified, we can:
- apologise on behalf of the firm.
- reduce the bill if appropriate.
- notify the client of their right to complain to the Legal Ombudsman, as to the firms alleged inadequate professional services.
WHAT HAPPENS AFTER A COMPLAINT?
Hopefully you will be satisfied with the outcome of our enquiries and the fee earner will continue to deal with the matter on your behalf. If not appropriate, another fee earner will be allocated to deal with your matter if you so wish.
CENTRAL REGISTER OF COMPLAINTS
All complaints must be notified to Kathryn Doogue who keeps the Central Register of Complaints received by the firm. The notification should outline the complaint and attach the original of any letter of complaint if one exists.
The Director should send all substantive correspondence and documents relating to the complaint, and details of how the matter was dealt with, to the Central Register.
A copy of the complaint and the result of the investigation will then be filed on the member of staff’s personnel file to be raised in the context of their next appraisal.
The Central Register of Complaints will be reviewed on an annual basis. The purpose of the review is to review matters generally and also to ascertain whether or not any trends are occurring. The annual review will be documented.