Complaint Handling – Our Policy
If you are dissatisfied about the service that you receive you are entitled to complain.
Our overriding objective is to address your dissatisfaction; our Complaint Handling Partner is Brian Hegarty.
You can contact him by writing to him at 56 Westgate Road, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 5XU or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone on 0191 232 9547.
What happens next?
- We will write to you acknowledging your complaint within 3 days of receiving it. We will send you a copy of our Complaint Handling Procedure.
- We will investigate your complaint. This will normally involve Brian Hegarty reviewing your file and speaking to the fee earner who acted for you.
- We will record your complaint in our Central Register and open a file for your complaint. We will do this within 2 working days of receiving your complaint.
- Brian Hegarty will invite you to a meeting to discuss and hopefully resolve your complaint. He will do this within 14 days of sending you the acknowledgment letter.
- Within 3 days of meeting Brian Hegarty, he will write to you to confirm what took place and to outline any solutions he has agreed with you.
- If you do not want a meeting or a meeting is not possible, Brian Hegarty will send you a detailed written reply to your complaint, including his suggestions for resolving the complaint. This will happen within 21 days of sending you the acknowledgment letter.
- At this stage, if you are still not satisfied, you can contact us again. We will arrange for another Partner to review the steps taken by Brian Hegarty in dealing with your complaint.
- 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 you can contact the Legal Ombudsman. You will need to visit the website www.legalombudsman.org.uk and complete a complaint form which is available in Word or pdf. You can send the completed form by email to email@example.com or by post to PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton, WV1 9WJ
Alternatively for further information you can contact the Legal Ombudsman on 0300 555 0333.
- The Legal Ombudsman will usually expect you to have tried to resolve your complaint using our own Complaint Handling Procedure and if you complain direct to the Legal Ombudsman you may find that you are referred back to us to use our procedure.
- Ordinarily a complainant must refer to the Legal Ombudsman within 6 months of the date of our final written response.
- Ordinarily a complainant must refer a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman within one year from the act or omission complained of or within one year from when the complainant should reasonably have known thee was cause for complaint (without taking advice from a third party) whichever is later.
- If there are exceptional circumstances the Legal Ombudsman may extend any of these time limits.
Solicitors Regulation Authority
If you think a solicitor might be dishonest or you have concerns about their ethics or integrity, you also have the right to notify our regulator, the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA). There are no time limits for making a report but there are limits on what the SRA will consider. Please note that the SRA is not able to deal with issues of poor service (complaints of this nature should instead be referred to the Legal Ombudsman). For further information about the SRA’s role, please contact the SRA or visit their website.
If you require Client Care Policies please contact Practice Support Manager Debora Sanderson.