Our Complaints Policy
We are committed to providing a high quality legal service to all our clients. [We are also committed to dealing with all other solicitors, barristers and other third parties in a professional and proper manner.] When something does go wrong we need you to tell us about it. This will help us to improve our standards.
Our Complaints Procedure
A copy of this Complaints Policy and Complaints Handling Procedure is available on request.
If you have a complaint please contact Gunther Young, our Complaints Handling Partner.
You can contact him at 21 Hall Quay Great Yarmouth.
Complaints Made by Telephone
- You may wish to make a complaint in writing and, if so, please follow the procedure in paragraphs 2 and 3 below. However, if you would rather speak on the telephone about your complaint then please telephone the Complaints Handling Partner on 01493 855676 who will make a note of the details of your complaint and what you would like done about it. He will discuss your concerns with you and aim to resolve them. If the matter is resolved he will record the outcome, check that you are satisfied with the outcome and record that you are satisfied. You may also wish to record the outcome of the telephone discussion in writing. The Complaints Handling Partner will in any case write to you to confirm the outcome.
If your complaint is not resolved on the telephone you will be invited to write to us about this so that it can be investigated formally.
Complaints made in Writing
- Please give the following details:
• Your name and address
• The name of the person you are complaining about;
• The details of the complaint;
• What you would like done about it
Please address your letter to Gunther Young at HKB Wiltshires 21 Hall Quay Great Yarmouth Norfolk NR30 2RA. We will, where possible, acknowledge receipt of your complaint within seven days.
Our Complaints Handling Partner will pass your complaint to the partner in charge of the department involved in your complaint.
What will happen next:
- We will send you a letter acknowledging your complaint and we may also ask you to confirm or explain the details set out. We will forward you a copy of this Complaints Procedure. We will also let you know the name of the person who will be dealing with your complaint. You can expect to receive our letter within seven days of us receiving your complaint.
- We will record your complaint in our central register and open a file for your complaint. We will do this within a week of receiving your complaint.
- We will then start to investigate your complaint. This may involve one or more of the following steps.
- We may ask the Fee Earner who acted for you to prepare their reply to your complaint as soon as possible
- We may examine their reply and the information in your complaint file. We may then ask the Fee Earner for more information.
- The Complaints Handling Partner will investigate your complaint and reply to you as soon as possible. The Complaints Handling Partner’s reply will set out:
- The nature and scope of his investigation;
- His conclusion on each complaint and the basis for his conclusion; and, if he finds that you are justified in your complaint, his proposals for resolving the complaint;
We may invite you to meet the Senior Partner to discuss and hopefully resolve your complaint. We will do this as soon as possible after receipt of all the details we need from the Fee Earner who acted for you.
As soon as practicable after the meeting we will write to you to confirm what took place and any solutions we have agreed with you.
If you do not want a meeting or it is not possible, we will send you a detailed reply to your complaint. This may include our suggestions for resolving the matter. This will happen as soon as possible after receipt of your written confirmation that you do not want a meeting or it is not possible.
- At this stage, if you are still not satisfied you can contact us again. We will then arrange to review our decision. This will happen in one of the following ways.
- The Senior Partner will review his own decision as soon as possible.
- We will arrange for someone in the firm who has not been involved in your complaint to review it. They will do this as soon as possible.
- We will let you know the result of the review as soon as possible after the review. At this time we will write to you confirming our final position on your complaint and explaining our reasons.
- At this stage, if you are still not satisfied you contact us again in writing to appeal the decision. We will then arrange for three partners not partners previously involved to review our decision as soon as practicable.
- We will let you know the result of the appeal as soon as possible after the appeal. At this time we will write to you confirming our final position on your complaint and explaining our reasons. We will also give you the name and address of the Legal Ombudsman. If you are still not satisfied you can contact him about your complaint.
Please note that the Legal Ombudsman, the independent complaints body for service complaints about lawyers, has a twelve-month time limit from the date of the act or omission about which you are complaining within which to make your complaint. We will not deal with complaints that fall outside of the twelve month time limit.
- All conversations and documents relating to the complaint will be treated as confidential and will be disclosed only to the extent that is necessary. Disclosure will be to the Senior Partner of the firm, the Complaints Handling Partner, members of the firm and anyone involved in the complaint and its investigation. Such people will include the solicitor, member of staff you have complained about and the person who investigates the complaint if that is not the Complaints Handling Partner. The Solicitors Regulation Authority and the Legal Ombudsman are entitled to inspect the documents and seek information about the complaint when discharging their auditing and monitoring functions.
- As part of our commitment to client care we make a written record of any & complaint and retain all documents and correspondence generated by the complaint for a period of six years. The firm inspects the record regularly and will, if appropriate, make changes to our procedures with a view to improving services.
Complaints to the Legal Ombudsman
- If you are unhappy with the outcome of our investigation you may take up your complaint with the Legal Ombudsman, the independent complaints body for complains about lawyers, at the conclusion of our consideration of your complaint. The Ombudsman is not able to consider your complaint until it has first been investigated by the firm. You can write to them at:
PO Box 6806
Telephone number: 0300 555 0333
If we have to change any of the timescales above, we reserve the right to do so, we will let you know and explain as to why this was necessary.