Complaints Handling Policy
Complaints Handling 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. This will help us to improve our standards.
- Our complaints procedure
If you have a complaint, you may first choose to try and resolve a specific problem with the barrister having conduct of your matter. You may do so, preferably, in writing, providing sufficient details.
If you do not feel able to or are unable to resolve your complaint or problem with that person, you may address it, preferably in writing, to Gaynor Hall who has overall responsibility for complaints for Crown Chambers. If the complaint relates to Gaynor Hall, any such complaint should be referred to Sarah Fearon.
Any such complaint should be raised not later than 3 months from the event in question in order to allow a fair investigation into the matter to take place.
- What will happen next?
2.1 Once your complaint has been received, it will be recorded in our central register. We will do this within three working days of receiving your complaint.
2.2 We will then open a separate file for your complaint and the Complaint Handler will send you a letter acknowledging that complaint. You can expect to receive our letter of acknowledged within 14 working days of us receiving your complaint.
2.3 The Complaint Handler will then start to investigate your complaint. This will normally involve the following steps:-
- Our Complaint Handler will ask the member of staff who acted for you or against whom you complain to supply your file (if applicable) and to provide written comment upon your complaint.
- They will then examine their reply, check any relevant matters from your file of papers and the information in your complaint file. If necessary, they may also speak to the member of staff concerned. This may take up to three further working days from receiving their reply and the file.
2.4 The Complaint Handler will then write to you to advise you of his preliminary findings. We aim to do this within 28 days of receipt of your complaint. The Complaint Handler may also invite you to a meeting to discuss and hopefully resolve your complaint.
2.5 If you do not want a meeting you should advise the Complaint Handler who will invite you instead to comment, if you so wish, upon their preliminary findings. After that or any meeting held they will send you a detailed reply to your complaint. This will include their conclusions and any suggestions for resolving the matter. They will do this within 10 working days of hearing from you, either in meeting or in writing.
2.6 At this stage, if you are still not satisfied you may contact us again. We will then arrange to review our decision. This can happen in one of the following ways.
- Another member of Chambers, unconnected with the matter, will review the Complaint Handler’s decision within 10 working days.
2.7 We will let you know the result of the review within five working 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.
2.8 Please be aware that there may be reasons why we find we will be unable to meet the timescales indicated above. If we have to change any of the timescales above, we will let you know and explain why.
2.9 If you feel there are personal circumstances which may make it difficult for you to have your complaint dealt with effectively under the above procedure, please let us know and we will see what alternative arrangements can be made.
2.10 You are valued as a client and we look to treat your complaint seriously and fairly.
- Complaint to the Ombudsman/Bar Standards Board
3.1 If you are not satisfied with the outcome of the investigation, you are able to contact the Legal Ombudsman at;
PO BOX 6806
TEL: 0300 555 0333
3.2 The Ombudsman has various time limits which may apply to your complaint which can be found at www.legalombudsman.org.uk where you will also find further information in relation to the Legal Ombudsman and their practices.
3.3 You are also able to report your concerns to the Bar Council by emailing email@example.com or by post to: The Bar Standards Board, 289-293 High Holborn, London, WC1V 7HZ.
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