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Complaints Procedure

THE JOHNSON PARTNERSHIP

 

COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE

 

 

As a Firm we obviously hope that you do not have cause to complain about our service to you.   However, if you do wish to complain about any part of our service, this document outlines the procedure which will be undertaken.

 

1. Any complaint should be made to Ian Boddy, unless the complaint is about Ian.  If the complaint is about Ian, or Ian is away, then the complaint should be made to Digby Johnson.

 

2. Any complaint should be made in writing, either by email to ianboddy@thejohnsonpartnership.co.uk or mail@thejohnsonpartnership.co.uk or in writing to The Johnson Partnership, Cannon, Courtyard, Long Row, Nottingham, NG1 6JE. All complaints will be treated seriously by this Firm. If you make a complaint verbally, you will be asked to put it in writing to trigger our complaints process.

 

3. We will normally acknowledge your complaint, in writing, within three working days and in any event within seven days of the complaint being made. 

 

4. It may be that we require further information from you, in order to properly investigate the complaint that you are making, and we may ask you to provide that information by speaking to us over the phone, writing to us or meeting with Ian or Digby in person.  We will speak to the member(s) of staff that you are complaining about and investigate the complaint that you are making.  We will keep a record of what both you and any member of staff involved tells us.  

 

5. We will notify you in writing of the outcome of our investigation into your complaint.   We will attempt to resolve your complaint to everyone’s satisfaction.

6. As a result of your complaint we may do one or more of the following:-

  1. take no action/decide that your complaint is not justified;

  2. offer you an apology and/or arrange for someone else to deal with your case;

  3. change our internal procedures;

  4. provide additional training to staff to ensure that a similar situation does not arise again;

  5. take disciplinary action against a member of staff;

  6. refer you to another firm of solicitors who can provide you with independent advice;

  7. If you are paying us privately, we may reduce your bill or waive it altogether.  

 

7. If you are not satisfied with the way in which we have dealt with your complaint you are entitled to make a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman at P. O. Box 6806, Wolverhampton, WV1 9WJ.  The Legal Ombudsman also have a website at www.legalombudsman.org.uk. If you wish to make a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman, you should be aware that from 1st April 2023 you must do this within one year from the date of the act or omission being complained about or within one year from when you should have realized that there was cause for complaint and in any event within 6 months of our final response to you.   The legal Ombudsman can exercise discretion to extend the one year time limit if, on the evidence, it is fair and reasonable to do so.

 

8. Although the maximum time allowed by the Legal Ombudsman for investigation and resolution of your complaint is eight weeks, we will try to resolve your complaint within 21 days.   However, if it is particularly complex or if we need to retrieve files from other solicitors or our storage facility, it may take longer.   In the event that the process takes longer than 21 days we will notify you of this and keep you updated as to our progress.

9. You also have the right to complain to the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA). The SRA deal with cases where firms have breached the SRA Principles. These principles say that solicitors and firms must act:

  1. in a way that upholds the constitutional principle of the rule of law, and the proper administration of justice.

  2. in a way that upholds public trust and confidence in the solicitors’ profession and in legal services provided by authorised persons.  

  3. with independence.

  4. with honesty.

  5. with integrity.

  6. in a way that encourages equality, diversity and inclusion.

  7. in the best interests of each client.

10. The SRA also consider issues relating to non-payment of professional fees (such as agent or expert fees) if:

  1. you have a County Court judgement in respect of the fee, and

  2. the judgement relates to the practice in connection with providing a legal service.

 

11. There are some issues the SRA do not investigate. However, they always consider allegations of dishonesty or discrimination.

 

12. The SRA website is www.sra.org.uk. They encourage contact via the website where possible. If you wish to write to them their address is Solicitors Regulation Authority, The Cube, 199 Wharfside Street, Birmingham, B1 1RN. Their telephone number is 0370 606 2555.

 

We take all complaints seriously.   We wish to provide the best service that we can, and we welcome any input that helps us to achieve this goal.  If you have any questions regarding this procedure, then you should not hesitate to contact either Ian Boddy or Digby Johnson who will attempt to explain it further. 

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