Complaints Handling Procedure
We are committed to providing high-quality legal services to all our clients. If you have a complaint, please contact us with the details.
What will happen next?
- We will send you a letter acknowledging receipt of your complaint within three days of us receiving the complaint, enclosing a copy of this procedure.
- We will then investigate your complaint. This will normally involve passing your complaint to the lawyer who is/was acting for you.
- This lawyer will then invite you to a meeting to discuss and hopefully resolve your complaint. S/he will do this within 14 days of sending you the acknowledgement letter.
- Within three days of the meeting, your acting lawyer will write to you to confirm what took place and any solutions s/he has agreed with you.
- If you do not want a meeting or it is not possible, your acting lawyer will send you a detailed written reply to your complaint, including his/her suggestions for resolving the matter, within 21 days of sending you the acknowledgement letter.
- At this stage, if you are still not satisfied, you should contact us again and we will arrange for Stephens’ Managing Director to review the decision. If the complaint was originally handled by the Managing Director, we will arrange for another Stephens lawyer to review the decision.
- We will write to you within 14 days of receiving your request for review, confirming our final position on your complaint and explaining our reasons.
- If you are still not satisfied, you may have the right to take your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman. The Legal Ombudsman can help if you are not happy with our work or service. The Legal Ombudsman will only consider complaints from members of the public, very small businesses, charities, clubs and trusts. If you are unsure if you are able to submit a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman, you should contact them for clarification on 0300 555 0333. Any complaint to the Legal Ombudsman must usually be made within six months of the date of our final decision on your complaint. You must refer your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman within six years of the problem happening or three years from when you found out about it. For further information you should contact the Legal Ombudsman or refer to www.legalombudsman.org.uk. Please note that the Legal Ombudsman may not deal with a complaint about a bill if you have applied to the court for assessment of that bill.
- You also have the right to complain to the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA). The SRA can help if you believe we have acted dishonestly. Further information is available on the SRA’s website https://www.sra.org.uk/home/home.page. Please note that the SRA requires that you raise the issue with us first.
- We carry Professional Indemnity Insurance for our clients’ protection, as required by the SRA. If you would like fuller details of our coverage please let us know.
If we have to change any of the timescales above, we will let you know and explain why.