Our complaints policy
We are committed to providing a high-quality legal service to all our clients. If something goes wrong, we need you to tell us about it so that we can address the issue with you. This will also help us to monitor and improve our standards.
Our complaints procedure
If you have any concerns about the way in which your matter is being conducted, are unhappy with any aspect of the service or the costs which you have been charged, you should raise any concerns in the first instance with the person who has conduct of your matter.
In many cases, the person who has conduct of your matter, together with his or her supervising fee earner, will be able to resolve any problem with you swiftly and effectively.
However, we accept that there may be occasions when the member of staff is unable to resolve your complaint, or you may feel it is sufficiently serious that an investigation be undertaken into the matter by a more senior member of the firm.
If you have a complaint which you feel has not been dealt with satisfactorily by the member of staff concerned, please contact the relevant Team Leader or Partner in charge of your matter, whose name and contact details will be contained in your initial Client Care letter. If your complaint concerns the relevant Team Leader or Partner in charge of your matter, he or she will pass it to another partner in the firm to consider.
What will happen next
1. We will send you a letter acknowledging receipt of your complaint, normally within 3 working days of us receiving the complaint, enclosing a copy of this procedure.
2. Responsibility for handling your complaint will be assigned to a member of the firm best placed to carry out the investigation. Normally this will be the Team Leader or Partner in charge of your matter for the member of staff concerned. The person handing your complaint will then investigate it. This will normally involve speaking to the member of staff who acted for you and reviewing your matter file with them. This process may involve us asking you to give further information regarding your complaint.
3. The person handling your complaint will then contact you in writing, or by telephone to discuss and hopefully resolve your complaint. If appropriate, you will be invited to a meeting to discuss your complaint. We aim to deal with this stage and give a detailed response to your complaint, including our suggestions for resolving the matter, within 15 working days of sending you the acknowledgement letter. However, complaints can vary in their complexity, and dealing with your complaint may take longer, in which case we will let you know and give you our anticipated response date.
4. In the event that the person handling your complaint has held a telephone discussion or meeting with you, he/she will write to you to confirm what took place and any solutions he/she has agreed with you within 5 working days of the discussion or meeting.
5. If you remain unhappy at this stage of the procedure, you may request for your complaint to be escalated further to Andrew Curwen, who is the Complaints Handling Partner for the firm. Your complaint will be reviewed, and further investigations may be carried out, if necessary. We will write to you within 15 working days of receiving your request for review, confirming our final position on your complaint and explaining our reasons.
6. We have eight weeks to consider your complaint. Following our final response, if you remain unhappy with our findings, you may have the right to refer your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman – an independent organisation with powers to resolve complaints about legal services.
Contact details for the Legal Ombudsman are:
• Website – www.legalombudsman.org.uk
• Telephone – 0300 555 0333.
• E-mail – firstname.lastname@example.org
• Postal address – Legal Ombudsman, PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton, WV1 9WJ.
The Legal Ombudsman will normally only deal with complaints from members of the public, some small businesses, charities, clubs or trusts. Ordinarily it can investigate complaints up to six years from the date of the problem happening or within three years from when someone should have found out about the problem.
However, if we send a final written response to your complaint, the time limit for you to refer the matter to the Legal Ombudsman would normally be six months from the date of that final response. If you do not refer your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman within that six month period, then your complaint may not be accepted by the Legal Ombudsman.
7. Alternative complaints resolution bodies also exist and are competent to deal with complaints about legal services, should both you and our firm agree to use such a scheme at the end of our internal complaints process. They provide Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) services. We do not agree to use, and have chosen not to adopt, an ADR process. We believe that the Legal Ombudsman Scheme is the most suitable for resolution of legal complaints.
We will not charge you for investigating a complaint made by you.
If we have to change any of the timescales above, we will let you know and explain why.
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Gorvins Residential LLP
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Gorvins Residential LLP