**Please note that although we will attempt to deal with any complaints as efficiently and promptly as possible the time limits as set out in our complaints procedure will not apply during the Covid 19 crisis as our offices are closed, we are operating on a skeleton staff, and we may not have access to all relevant files.**
We want to give you the best possible service. However, if at any point you become unhappy or concerned about the service we provided then you should inform us immediately, so that we can do our best to resolve the problem as quickly as possible.
In the first instance it may be helpful to contact the person who is working on your case to discuss your concerns and we will do our best to resolve any issues at this stage. If you would like to make a formal complaint, then you can read our full complaints procedure below. Making a complaint will not affect how we handle your case.
Our complaints procedure
If you have a complaint, please write to us with the details. You have been given the name of the member of our staff who is dealing with your matter and the name of the relevant Supervisor. Any complaint should be addressed initially to the named Supervisor.
What will happen next?
1. We will send you a letter acknowledging your complaint. We will also let you know the name of the person who will be dealing with your complaint. You can expect to receive our correspondence within three days of us receiving your complaint.
2. We will then start to investigate your complaint. This will normally involve the following steps:
a. The Supervisor will investigate your complaint and reply to you. We aim to let you have such a reply within 15 working days.
b. If you are not satisfied with the Supervisor’s response, please let us know as soon as possible. The matter will then be referred to our Complaints Handling Partner, Mr. V.M. Pearl who has overall responsibility for complaints.
c. He will then examine the complaint and the reply together with the information in your file, and if necessary, he may also speak to the fee earner concerned and the Supervisor. This will take up to 15 working days from receiving the file.
3. He will record your complaint in our central register.
4. He will then either write or email you to respond to the complaint or invite you to a meeting to discuss and hopefully resolve your complaint.
5. If a meeting takes place we will write to you to confirm what took place and any solutions which have been agreed with you.
6. At this stage if you are still not satisfied, please contact us again and we will then arrange to review our decision.
7. We will let you know the result of the review within five days of the end of the review. At this time we will write to you confirming our final position on your complaint and our reasons.
What to do if we cannot resolve your complaint?
If you are a member of the public, very small business, charity, club or Trust you will have the right to complain to the Legal Ombudsman at the conclusion of our complaint process. The legal Ombudsman gives us a maximum of eight weeks to resolve your complaint. Once the eight week period has passed the Legal Ombudsman will normally accept the complaint for investigation even if it has not been fully dealt with by us.
The Legal Ombudsman will look at your complaint independently and it will not affect how we handle your case.
Before accepting a complaint for investigation, the Legal Ombudsman will check that you have tried to resolve your complaint with us first. If you have, then you must take your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman:
- Within six months of receiving a final response to your complaint and
- No more than six years from the date of act/omission; or
- No more than three years from when you should reasonably have known there was cause for complaint
If you would like more information about the Legal Ombudsman, please contact them:
- Visit: https://www.legalombudsman.org.uk
- Call: 0300 555 0333 between 9am to 5pm.
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Legal Ombudsman PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton, WV1 9WJ
Alternative complaints bodies (such as Small Claims Mediation) exist which are competent to deal with complaints about legal services should both you and our firm agree to use such a scheme. Russell & Russell do not agree to use Small Claims Mediation.
When to take a complaint to the Solicitors Regulation Authority
The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) can help you if you are concerned about our behaviour. This could be for things like dishonesty, taking or losing your money or treating you unfairly because of your age, a disability or other characteristic. You can raise your concerns with the Solicitors Regulation Authority.