Newmans Solicitors prides itself on providing services of the highest quality to all of its clients. We aim to ensure that any complaints that clients may have are identified and dealt with in accordance with our procedure.
We have an established procedure for dealing with complaints from clients. The procedure has been established so that we can resolve as many problems as possible within our offices and avoid having complaints and problems reported and escalated and also to preserve the goodwill of our clients, even if things have gone wrong.
Our procedure also assists the Firm in identifying the cause of any problem of which the client has complained offering any appropriate redress and correcting any unsatisfactory procedures.
Such complaints must be dealt with sympathetically and quickly. Our reputation depends on this, as it is all part of our high standard of service and incorporates client care.
Clients are notified in our Engagement letter / Terms of Business of their right to complain. If the client asks for a copy of our standard procedure, it is at this point forwarded to them in writing.
A documented review of this policy / process will take place annually to verify its effective operation across our Firm.
What is a complaint?
A report by a client that their expectations of what they consider to be a good service have not been met.
A complaint can also be made by a prospective client if we have:
– Unreasonably refused a service to a complainant;
– Persistently or unreasonably offered a service that the complainant does not want.
Making a complaint
In the first instance, you should register the complaint with the person dealing with your matter.
Investigating the complaint
(1) We will acknowledge the complaint within ten days of receipt of the formal letter of complaint.
(2) We will conduct a full investigation and an independent review of the matter.
(3) We aim to respond in full within 28 days. However, if the complaint is of a more complex nature we will require more time but we will let the complainant know when they will receive a full response.
(4) We will reply to the complainant, usually in writing to tell him/her of our views on the complaint and how we propose to resolve it, hopefully to the complainant’s satisfaction. The client will also be advised in what timescale they will be given an initial/substantive response.
(5) If the complainant is dissatisfied with the outcome or with the way the complaint has been handled, the complainant may write to the Client Care Director (Ms Saira Babar) who will make such further investigations as are necessary. The Client Care Director is responsible for ensuring that complaints are handled effectively and in accordance with the Firm’s procedure.
(6) The Client Care Director will inform the complainant of the conclusions and any alternative proposals to resolve the complaint, usually within 28 days of the matter being referred to her.
(7) If still unresolved at this stage, the complainant may take their complaint to the Legal Ombudsman.
(8) We will identify the cause of any problems of which the client has complained offering appropriate redress and correcting any unsatisfactory procedures.
The Legal Ombudsman is an independent body established by the Office for Legal Complaints under the Legal Services Act 2007 to deal with complaints against Solicitors.
Before it will consider a complaint the Legal Ombudsman generally requires that the Firm’s internal Complaints Procedure has been exhausted. If the Legal Ombudsman is satisfied that the Firm’s proposals for resolving a complaint are reasonable, it may decline to investigate further.
The Legal Ombudsman’s address is:
In the case of any disciplinary matters/concerns, please direct all complaints to the Solicitors Regulation Authority www.sra.org.uk and they can be contacted on: 0370 606 2555.