Patricia White Lawyer Ltd is committed to client care and providing a high standard of service to our clients. There may be occasions when you may feel that the service you expected does not match that which we deliver. We do not want you to feel this way and want all of our clients to be able to feel that they can speak to us if there is a problem so that we can address any concerns and review our service delivery.
If you have a complaint about the service you have received from us or the handling of your case please contact us as soon as you feel there is something not right. We will respond to any concerns you raise quickly and efficiently.
Your complaint must in the first instance be addressed to Patricia White either by letter, email or telephone call. If by email this should marked ‘Complaint’ and be sent to:
Due to the regulation of legal services, in the first instance you should make your complaint to us within 6 months of the last correspondence you receive from us or 1 year of the act or omission about which you are complaining occurred.
If you have any special needs to enable you to bring your complaint to us please let us know and we will do our best to accommodate them.
To help us make sure we have understood your complaint, and not miss anything, please tell us:
- your full name, contact details and any reference number you may have for your case;
- what you think we have done wrong; and
- what you think we should do to put things right.
How we will deal with your complaint
We have up to 8 weeks to consider your complaint and will endeavour to deal with it as quickly as possible. We will not charge you for handling your complaint but please note that if we have issued a bill for work done on the matter, and all or some of the bill is not paid, we may be entitled to charge interest on the amount outstanding. If we have not resolved it within 8 weeks you may complain to the Legal Ombudsman whose contact details are overleaf and you will also find these in your initial client care letter.
If your complaint relates to misconduct, you are entitled to contact CILEx Regulation Limited at Kempston Manor, Kempston, Bedford, MK42 7AB or telephone 01234 845770 or email: email@example.com. You must bring your complaint to CILEx Regulation within 12 months of the events that gave rise to the complaint.
Our internal investigation process is set out below:
- We will send you a letter acknowledging receipt of your complaint within 5 working days from the date we receive your communication and it will be recorded in our central register. A complaint file will be opened and we will send you a copy of this procedure, which explains how your complaint will be handled.
- Patricia White will fully investigate your complaint and will provide a substantive response within 21 working days from the date of our letter of acknowledgement.
- If your complaint is particularly complex we may have to change the standard timescales. We will let you know if this is necessary and explain to you why and provide you with an updated timescale.
- We may be able to deal with the matter in a phone call, or we may need to carry out a detailed review of your case. We may also request documents from you and want to arrange a meeting with you to discuss the complaint. If further information is needed, we will tell you how long it is likely to take us to complete our investigation and keep you informed of developments.
- In all cases we will write to you with a detailed reply to your complaint to tell you the outcome within 3 days of completion of our investigation.
- Upon completion of the Stage 1 above, if you remain dissatisfied, we will give you the opportunity to have your complaint reviewed. When contacting us please explain why you continue to be dissatisfied. We will also invite you to discuss the matter with us if it appears that this may resolve your concerns.
- Within 3 days of a meeting, where one is held, we will write to you to confirm what took place and any solutions we have agreed with you.
- Within 14 days of receiving your request for a review, (where a meeting has been held, within 14 days of that meeting) we will write to you confirming our final position on your complaint and explaining our reasons.
If you are dissatisfied with the outcome
If you remain unhappy, you can complain to the Legal Ombudsman, which is an independent complaints body and the statutory complaints scheme for legal services. The contact details for the Legal Ombudsman are: – telephone number 0300 555 0333, by post to: Legal Ombudsman, PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton, WV1 9WJ or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Their website is www.legalombudsman.org.uk.
Who can complain to the Legal Ombudsman?
The Legal Ombudsman will accept complaints from individuals and small businesses, charities, clubs, societies, associations and trusts. Further details of the Legal Ombudsman Scheme are available on the website: www.legalombudsman.org.uk.
The Legal Ombudsman will normally only consider a complaint if, following completion of our complaints procedure, the matter has not been resolved to your satisfaction.
Timeframe for making a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman
Ordinarily you can ask the Legal Ombudsman to look at your complaint if:-
- you refer the complaint to the Legal Ombudsman within 6 months of our final response to your complaint.
- you refer your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman within either 6 years of the problem happening or three years from when you found out about it.
There are alternative dispute resolution complaints bodies, such as Small Claims Mediation, which are able to deal with complaints about legal services should both parties wish to use the scheme. The website address for Small Claims Mediation is www.small-claims-mediation.co.uk. We do not agree to use Small Claims Mediation because we consider that the service offered by the Legal Ombudsman is the most appropriate means of resolving the issues between us. However, if you would like to use Small Claims Mediation, or any other Alternative Dispute Resolution entity, please tell us, saying why you consider it appropriate to do so, and we will consider your request. We will not consider using Small Claims Mediation if the matter has already been dealt with by the Legal Ombudsman.
Notice of claims to be given to: Hera Indemnity Limited, 68 Lombard Street, London, EC3V 9LJ
Our Policy No. PI18AXS1002
As the firm is authorized by CILEx Regulation to conduct reserved legal activities we are required to ensure that all of our clients can provide feedback to CILEx Regulation on the service received from our firm. Tell my regulator what you think of the service you have received. Visit http://www.cilexregulation.org.uk then click on the link entitled ‘Consumers’ and then ‘Surveys’ and take the Client Survey.
We will also send to you our client care questionnaire and would appreciate receiving your feedback on every aspect of our handling of your matter.