Good morning

Complaints Procedure

Our objective is to provide the best possible service. However, if at any point you become unhappy or concerned about the service we have provided then you should inform us immediately so that we can do our best to resolve the problem. 

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 firm’s full complaints procedure here We are committed to providing a high-quality legal service to all our clients.  When something goes wrong we need you to tell us about it.  This will help us to improve our standards.

Is there a problem with the service you have received from us?

If you have any problem with the service provided or the bill please let us know as soon as possible. The sooner we hear of your problem the quicker we can respond.

First, you should inform your Fee-Earner (the person who handled your file) of your problem. If you wish to involve the Supervisor, you may do so.  The names of the Fee-Earner and the Supervisor are set out in our initial letter to you. A full discussion can then take place (either in person, on the telephone or via email or letters) beween that person and yourself with the object of resolving the problem. You may ask that the Supervisor is involved in that discussion.

If your problem is not resolved your next course of action is to refer your continuing concerns to our Quality & Compliance Solicitor whose email address is wendy.campbell@awdrys.co.uk. However before doing so please first ensure that you have tried to resolve this problem as set out above.  Making a complaint is a serious matter and will be treated as such and so we ask you to be quite sure that you are indeed making a formal complaint. 

  1.  If you have not successfully resolved the matter as set out above, please contact us with the details of your complaint in writing.  We have eight weeks to consider and resolve your complaint after which you may refer the matter to the Legal Ombudsman – see item 10 below.  
  2. We will send you a letter (or email) within 3 working days acknowledging receipt of your complaint and if not already provided, asking you to let us have full details of the complaint.  In our response, we will provide you with details of who will be dealing with your complaint together with a copy of this Complaints Procedure if you have not already received one.
  3. Your complaint will be recorded in our central register 
  4. Once we have received full details of your complaint we will, again within 3 days, confirm receipt and will start to investigate your complaint.  
  5. The investigation will normally be conducted by our Quality & Compliance Solicitor who has 15 working days within which to investigate.  This allows time to retrieve the file (which may be stored in a warehouse away from our offices), liaise with the Fee-Earner (if possible) who acted for you. It also allows time for an internal meeting where necessary. 
  6. Having carried out a full internal investigation into the matter our Quality & Compliance Solicitor will then provide a substantive reply to your complaint within a further 5 working days which will normally include an invitation for you to attend our offices to talk it all through. 
  7.  If a meeting takes place the Quality & Compliance Solicitor will, within 3 working days of the meeting write to you to confirm what took place and any solutions he/she has agreed with you.
  8. If you are unable to attend a meeting or prefer not to have a meeting the Quality & Compliance Solicitor will invite you to read and comment on his/her findings in an attempt to resolve the matter via letter or email correspondence, all of which should be concluded as soon as practicable and at the latest, within 8 weeks of the date of the initial complaint.  
  9. We will always do our best to adhere to the timescales above and we will let you know and explain why if there is a delay (for example at holiday times).
  10. If you are still not satisfied that your complaint has been resolved to your satisfaction, you are of course entitled to contact the Legal Ombudsman in order to take the matter further.  

    The Legal Ombudsman, P O Box 6806, Wolverhampton, WV1 9WJ
    Telephone: 0300 555 0333 Email: enquiries@legalombudsman.org.uk

    Please be aware that you are entitled to contact the Legal Ombudsman at any time. However, the Legal Ombudsman does expect you to have exhausted our complaints procedure first before getting involved. Therefore we will try hard to resolve your complaint without his involvement.

    Please also note that the Legal Ombudsman will not normally consider complaints that are more than six years old or three years since you ought to have been aware of the problem or 6 months after the end of your complaint.  No charge is payable by you for this service.
  11. We are also required to inform you that alternative complaints bodies such as Ombudsman Services or Promediate exist which are competent to deal with complaints about legal services should both you and our firm wish to use such a scheme as a result of the findings of our internal complaints process.

Please be reassured that making a complaint will not affect how we handle your case. 

What to do  if we cannot resolve your complaint

The Legal Ombudsman can help you if we are unable to resolve your complaint ourselves. They 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, there are several ways you can contact them.

Visit: www.legalombudsman.org.uk  
Call: 0300 555 0333 between 9 am to 5 pm
Email: enquiries@legalombudsman.org.uk
or Letter to The Legal Ombudsman, PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton, WV1 9WJ 

The Solicitors Regulation Authority 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.