Our Complaints Policy
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 both so that we can put it right and to help us to improve our standards. Initially we would hope that you would take up any concern with the member of the firm dealing with your matter but this policy assumes that you have not been able to resolve any issue satisfactorily. So that we can put things right, we ask that you contact as soon as possible after you feel dissatisfied; this should be within 6 months of becoming aware of the issue you wish to complain about.
Our complaints procedure
If you still have a complaint then please contact Justin Coates, who is our practice manager. You can write to him at 17 Valley Bridge Parade, Scarborough, YO11 2JX, or if you prefer you can telephone his secretary on 01723 364321 to arrange an appointment. If we have to change any of the responsibilities or the timescales set out below we will let you know and explain why.
What will happen next?
1. If you have contacted us in writing, we will send you a letter acknowledging your complaint and we may ask you to confirm or explain any details. We will also let you know the name of the person who will be dealing with your complaint, normally Justin Coates, unless he has had personal involvement in the matter, in which case Mark Jefferies will deal with the complaint. He will commence investigations by calling for and examining the relevant file/s.
2. We will then record your complaint in our central register and open a file for your complaint.
3. In some circumstances it may be appropriate for us to meet to discuss and hopefully resolve your complaint. If appropriate we might invite you to a meeting to discuss your complaint an we would hope to be in a position to invite you to a meeting no more than twenty-one days after first receiving your complaint. If you would prefer not to meet, or if we cannot arrange this within an agreeable timescale, Justin Coates will write fully to you setting out his views on the situation and any redress that he would feel to be appropriate, this would normally be within twenty-one days of receiving your complaint.
4. Within seven days of any meeting we will write to you to confirm what took place and any suggestions that we have agreed with you. In appropriate cases we could offer an apology, a reduction of any bill or a repayment in relation to any payment received
5. At this stage, if you are still not satisfied, please let us know. We will then arrange to review our decision. We would generally aim to do this within 14 days. This will happen in one of the following ways at our sole discretion.
· Justin Coates will review his own decision in light of any further comments you may have made
· We may arrange for someone in the firm who has not been involved in your complaint to review it.
· We may ask our local law society or another local firm of solicitors to review your complaint. We will let you know how long this process will take.
· We may invite you to agree to independent mediation. We will let you know how long this process will take.
6. 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 explaining our reasons. If you are not satisfied with the outcome of the complaints process or if we have taken more than eight weeks to resolve your complaint, you are entitled to refer your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman. The Legal Ombudsman asks that you contact them within six months from the end of our complaints process. You can contact the Legal Ombudsman by:
Post: Legal Ombudsman, PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton, WV1 8WJ
Telephone: 0300 555 0333