Complaints Procedure for Clients
Wordley Partnership is committed to providing the best possible service to all of our clients. However, if at any point you become unhappy or concerned about the service we have provided then you should inform us immediately, so that we can do our best to resolve the problem. In the first instance we will try to ensure your concerns are resolved between you and the partner responsible for your matter. It may therefore be helpful to first contact the person who is working on your case to discuss your concerns and we will do our best to resolve any issues without the need to start a formal complaints process.
If you would like to make a formal complaint however, we do operate a complaints procedure to help resolve any problems promptly and fairly. Please write to the partner specified in our letter of engagement or to our Managing Partner, Paul Wordley setting out the problems you have encountered and the details of your complaint. We will review your complaint and decide which other partner in the firm has the expertise best suited to consider your complaint in detail.
We will acknowledge your complaint in writing within five business days of receipt and give you the name of the partner who has been assigned to handle the matter. The investigating partner will consider your complaint and within a further five business days write to you with their preliminary observations. They may also request that you clarify certain aspects which may not be apparent from our file. When the partner has all the necessary information from you they will take one or more of the following steps:
obtain a written statement on the matter from the fee earner who handled your matter and about whom the complaint is made;
ask for information from any other member of our staff who has information relating to the matter or the complaint that you have made; and/or
invite you to have a discussion with him/her to discuss the issues raised and seek to resolve your complaint.
We will then respond to your complaint in detail within seven days of any meeting held between you and the investigating partner or if no meeting takes place, within 21 days of your initial written complaint. Our report will provide you with a considered reply to the complaint and proposals as to how we may be able to resolve it amicably.
If it becomes necessary to change any of the time periods mentioned above, we will write to you promptly explaining the reason for the delay and the likely duration, although we will endeavour to resolve your complaint within eight weeks of it coming to our attention.
If for any reason we are unable to resolve matters between us within eight weeks, you may be entitled to ask the Legal Ombudsman of England and Wales to investigate your complaint. For further information, you should refer to the Legal Ombudsman website (www.legalombudsman.org.uk). Normally you would need to contact the Ombudsman within six months of our final response to your complaint and (i) no more than six years from the date of act/omission, or (ii) no more than three years from when you should reasonably have known there was cause for complaint. You can contact the Legal Ombudsman by telephone on 0300 555 0333, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by post at PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton WV1 9WJ.
If the complaint relates to our charges, you may be entitled to apply to the court for an assessment of the bill under Part III of the Solicitors Act 1974, in which case the Legal Ombudsman may not consider your complaint. If all or a part of a bill remains unpaid, we may be entitled to charge interest.
The Solicitors Regulation Authority can help you if you are concerned about our conduct. This could be for things like dishonesty, taking or losing client money or treating people unfairly because of their age, a disability or other characteristic. You can raise any such concerns with the Solicitors Regulation Authority.