Complaints and Termination Procedure

Our Complaints Procedure

A complaint is any expression of client dissatisfaction however it is expressed. If you have a complaint about any aspect of our service, or an issue with any bills delivered on your matter, please contact us with the details. It would be helpful if you could deliver a written letter or email to our office setting out the circumstances.

In the event of disputes over billing and amounts due to the firm, please note that we reserve the right to charge interest on any unpaid bill (or part thereof) at a rate equal to Base Rate +4%

What will happen next?

1. We will send you a letter acknowledging receipt of your complaint within three days of us receiving the complaint, enclosing a copy of this procedure.

2. We will then investigate your complaint. This will normally involve passing your complaint to Penny Raby who will review your matter file.

3. Penny will then invite you to a meeting to discuss and hopefully resolve your complaint. She will do this within 14 days of sending you the acknowledgement letter.

4. Within three days of the meeting, Penny will write to you to confirm what took place and any solutions she has agreed with you.

5. If you do not want a meeting or it is not possible, Penny will send you a detailed written reply to your complaint, including her suggestions for resolving the matter, within 21 days of sending you the acknowledgement letter.

6. At this stage, if you are still not satisfied, you should contact us again and we will arrange for another firm of lawyers, Leitch & Co, 16 Merstow Green, Evesham, Worcestershire, WR11 4BD, telephone number 01386 49227 to contact you. We have an arrangement to deal with each other’s complaints if clients prefer. This will be at no extra cost to you.

7. We will write to you within 14 days of receiving your request for a review with Leitch & Co., confirming our position on your complaint and explaining our reasons.

If we have to change any of the timescales above, we will let you know and explain why.

8. If you are still not satisfied, we will offer a meeting with an agreed third party to mediate, which meeting will be recorded.

9. If you are still dissatisfied with our service, bills rendered, or the outcome of our complaint review, then you should refer to the office of the Legal Ombudsman as below.

Further information and guidance:

Legal Ombudsman

The Legal Ombudsman’s Office has formal powers to resolve complaints about lawyers. It is a free service. Their job is to look at legal complaints in a fair and independent way – they will not take sides. As of February 2013 the upper limit for compensation awarded by the Legal Ombudsman is now £50,000. Also, as of this date the time limit for bringing a complaint is six years from the date of act or omission, or three years from when the complainant should have known of the complaint.

As with any kind of dispute, they recommend it best to complain to Penny Raby & Co first to give us a chance to resolve the issue. If you are still not satisfied or are not sure about what to do, then please get in touch with their office at:

Legal Ombudsman

PO Box 6806

Wolverhampton

WV1 9WJ

Further details are available at the website www.legalombudsman.org.uk or by email at enquiries@legalombudsman.org.uk

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TERMINATION

You may terminate your instructions to us in writing at any time, but we will be entitled to keep all your papers and documents while there is money owing to us for our charges and expenses. If at any stage you do not wish us to continue doing work and/or incurring charges and expenses on your behalf, you must tell us this clearly in writing.

If you choose to change to another solicitor during a case, or otherwise terminate our instructions, a copy of the file will be taken for our records and security, and must be paid for at the rate of £0.25 per sheet, before transfer.

If we decide to stop acting for you, for example, if you do not pay an interim bill or comply with the request for a payment on account, we will tell you the reason and give you notice in writing.

Terms and conditions of business

Unless otherwise agreed, and subject to the application of the current hourly rates, these Terms and Conditions of Business shall apply to any future instructions given by you to this firm.

Although your continuing instructions in this matter will amount to an acceptance of these Terms and Conditions of Business, it may not be possible for us to start work on your behalf until one copy of them has been returned to us for us to keep on our file.

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