Blain Boland & Co Complaints Policy
1. If you are unhappy with the way we have dealt with your matter we want our clients to be able to tell us about it. Our aim is that a complaint will improve our standards and thereby reduce the risk of potential complaints in the future.
2. As stated in our terms and conditions of business, clients who wish to make a complaint which they are unable to resolve with the individual dealing with the work (or their supervisor) or the person managing the client’s relationship with the firm, are then asked to contact the Complaints Manager, Jill Shields.
3. Please also use this complaints procedure if you have a complaint about a bill. In addition, you have the right to object to a bill by applying to the court for an assessment of the bill under Part III of the Solicitors Act 1974. If you apply to the court, the Legal Ombudsman (see below for details) may decide not to deal with a complaint about the bill.
4. The firm is bound by the SRA Code of Conduct. This deals with complaints handling. The firm is not entitled to charge for handling a complaint.
5. If you feel you have a complaint, please contact the Fee Earner with the details of the exact complaint.
How to Complain
1. You should put your complaint in writing to:
1.1 the lawyer handling your matter who will then (depending on the nature of your complaint) pass on your complaint to their supervisor;
1.2 the Fee Earner/ Solicitor managing your relationship with the firm and if you still feel aggrieved thereafter,
1.3 the Complaints Manager, Jill Shields
What will happen next?
1. All Client Complaints are forwarded to the Complaints Manager.
2. The Complaints Manager will open a separate file for the complaint and record the details.
3. We will send you a letter acknowledging receipt of the complaint within 5 working days of receiving it. We might also need to ask you for further clarification about your complaint.
4. We will then investigate the complaint.
5. It might be possible to offer a solution at this stage and we will write to you to ask whether the solution is acceptable.
6. The Fee Earner will then invite the client to a meeting via Zoom to discuss and hopefully resolve the complaint. She/He will do this within 10 working days of sending the client the acknowledgement letter.
7. Within 3 working days of the meeting, the Fee Earner will write to the client to confirm what took place and any solutions she/he has agreed with you.
8. If the client does not want a meeting or it is not possible, the Fee Earner will send them a written reply to their complaint, including her/his suggestions for resolving the matter, within 15 working days of sending them the acknowledgement letter.
9. At this stage, if the client is still not satisfied, they should contact us again and write to the Complaints Manager within 10 working days, who will review what has gone on.
10. We will write to the client within 15 working days of receiving their request for a review, confirming our final position on the complaint and explaining our reasons.
1. If you are not satisfied, you have a right to contact the Legal Ombudsman at PO Box 15870, Birmingham, B30 9EB about your complaint.
2. Any complaint to the Legal Ombudsman must normally be made within six months of receiving a final written response from us about your complaint or within a year of the act or omission about which you are complaining occurring (or you becoming aware of it).
3. For further information you should contact the Legal Ombudsman on 0300 555 0333 or at www.legalombudsman.org.uk. Please note that the Legal Ombudsman may decline to deal with complaints from certain types of clients.
4. If we have to change any of the above timescales we will let you know and explain the reasons for the change.