Our Complaints Policy
We want to give you the best possible legal service.
If, at any point, you become unhappy or concerned about the service we have provided, please let us know immediately. This will help us to improve our standards and seek to resolve the matter as quickly as possible.
In the first instance, we would recommend raising any concerns with the solicitor with the conduct of your case and we will do our best to resolve any issues at that stage.
However, if you do not wish to do that or you are dissatisfied with the response you have received, you may wish to invoke our formal complaints procedure. A complaint is an expression of dissatisfaction regarding the service given, the legal advice received or the outcome. Making a complaint will not affect how we handle your case, and we will not charge for investigating or responding to your complaint.
The first step is to set out in writing clearly and concisely the nature of your complaint and to send it to us by either of the following methods:
- By Post to: Client Care, Estate Legal Limited, Trym Lodge, Bristol, BS9 3HQ.
- By Email to: firstname.lastname@example.org using the subject heading ‘Client Care.’
What will happen next?
- We will contact you to acknowledge receipt of your complaint within 7 days of the written complaint.
- We will then investigate your complaint. This will normally involve passing your complaint to the Client Care partner, Bonnie Martin, or another partner at the firm who is best placed to investigate the complaint. The appropriate partner will then review the matter, including speaking to the solicitor who acted for you. We may also need to contact you by email or telephone to ask for further information.
- The appropriate partner will then invite you to a meeting (either in person or by telephone) to discuss and hopefully resolve the complaint. This will be done within 14 working days of sending out the acknowledgement letter.
- If you do not want to attend a meeting or it is not possible, the appropriate partner will send a detailed written reply to the complaint, including any suggestions for resolving the matter, within 21 days of the acknowledgement letter.
- If you are still not satisfied and request a review, the appropriate partner will review the decision and write to you within 14 working days of receiving the request for a review, confirming the final position and explaining any reasons.
- At this stage, if you are still not satisfied, you may contact the Legal Ombudsman as described below.
What to do if we cannot resolve your complaint
If we have not resolved your complaint to your satisfaction within eight weeks, you may be able to complain to the Legal Ombudsman Service. 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 compliant 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
- No more than six years from the date of act/omission; or
- No more than three years when you should reasonably have known there was cause for complaint.
If you would like more information about the Legal Ombudsman, their contact details are as follows:
- Address: PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton, WV1 3WJ
- Email: email@example.com
- Phone: 0300 555 0333 between 9am to 5pm
- Website: legalombudsman.org.uk
If your concern relates to an invoice that we have raised for our services, then you have the right to apply to the court for an assessment of the invoice under the Solicitors Act 1974. Please note that the Legal Ombudsman may not be able to consider a complaint you have about a bill which has already been referred to the court for assessment.
What to do if you are unhappy with our behaviour
The Solicitors Regulation Authority can help if you are concerned about our behaviour. This can be for things like dishonesty, taking or losing your money or treating you unfairly because of your age, disability or other characteristic.
The Solicitors Regulation Authority’s website provides further information as to how you can raise your concerns: https://www.sra.org.uk/consumers/problems/report-solicitor/