We aim to deal with any complaints promptly, fairly, openly and effectively.
Our definition of a complaint is:
“any written or verbal expression of dissatisfaction referred to any person in our organisation by a client.
A complaint can be identified through a letter, telephone call, e-mail, and fax or in the course of a face to face conversation.
A complaint may involve:
• Dissatisfaction with the handling of a case;
• Disappointment with an alleged lack of communication;
• Frustration with an alleged lack of case progress;
• An allegation of discrimination; or
• Dissatisfaction with the outcome of the case.
However, issues of a minor nature, for example, not returning a non-urgent telephone call until the following day will not be recorded as a complaint.
It is the policy of the firm that:
• Every complaint made by a client is reported and recorded centrally;
• Every complaint received is responded to appropriately;
• The cause of the problem is identified, appropriate redress is offered, and unsatisfactory procedures are corrected.
We inform clients in writing at the outset of the matter of their right to complain and how complaints can be made.
We also inform clients in writing, both at the outset of their matter and at the conclusion of our complaints procedure (where the complaint has not been settled or dealt with to a client’s satisfaction) of their right to complain to the Legal Ombudsman, the time frame for doing so and full details of how to contact the Legal Ombudsman.
When a client makes a complaint, we send them our standard letter which sets out our complaints handling procedure, outlining the relevant stages and timescales. A copy of this letter is in Appendix Thirteen. Where appropriate, we shall ensure that our procedure is tailored in response to the needs of our individual clients, especially those who are vulnerable
We report and record every complaint made centrally. All complaints are referred to Mr Abdul Razzaque Mirani in the first instance, who:
• Reviews the matter with any staff member involved;
• Identifies the cause of any problems of which the client has complained
• Determines what degree of validity the complaint has; and
• Decides how the complaint should be resolved.
Where Mr Abdul Razzaque Mirani identifies a potential negligence claim or where a client claims financial loss, compensation or threatens legal action, the case must be referred immediately to Mr Abdul Razzaque Mirani who will decide, in conjunction with our insurers, whether we should continue with this complaints procedure or adopt some other course of action.
We inform clients if we discover any act or omission which could give rise to a claim by them against us but before doing so fee earners must refer any such cases to their supervisor for advice. If the supervisor agrees that the circumstances of the case could give rise to a claim then the case must be referred immediately to Mr Abdul Razzaque Mirani who will decide, in conjunction with our insurers, what information should be provided to the client.
Mr Abdul Razzaque Mirani will offer the client appropriate redress and recommend amendments to unsatisfactory procedures to the Mr Mirani where appropriate who will ensure that any unsatisfactory procedures are corrected.
Any complaints made where Mr Abdul Razzaque Mirani had the conduct of the matter are referred to Mr Faisal Mehmood.
Mr Abdul Razzaque Mirani will keep details of all complaints received in a central record. Copies of any documents/correspondence showing how each complaint is resolved are also retained on the central record.
Mr Abdul Razzaque Mirani has overall responsibility for handling complaints and carries out an analysis of the central record of complaints annually. Following this review, he decides whether any action can be taken to improve our services. The results of the review (i.e. any trends identified and action proposed) are documented.
Mr Abdul Razzaque Mirani is responsible for the operation of this procedure. He will review it annually to verify that it is in effective operation.