Complaints Policy

At Harmans we are dedicated to the continual improvement of our services. However occasionally things do not run as well as we would hope and, in such circumstances, we need to know about it otherwise we can’t put it right.

We would hope to be able to address your concerns without the need for a formal complaint and to that end would ask that you first raise any issues that you have, either by telephone or in writing, with the fee earner concerned. It may be that they will be able to address the issue without the need for any formal intervention. If you are not happy / the issues cannot be resolved then we would ask you to put your complaint in writing.

In the event that you do wish to make a formal complaint, we aim to resolve it promptly, fairly and effectively and in any event within eight weeks of it first being referred to us.

 

Formal Complaints Procedure
Please raise your complaint, either by telephone or in writing, with the Complaints Handling Partner, Sara Gould, who will review the complaint and respond to you, within 14 days with her conclusions. In the absence of the Complaints Handling Partner or if the matter concerns the Complaints Handling partner, your matter will be passed to one of the other Partners.

The following steps will/ may be taken on receipt of a complaint
(a) Identify problem/ nature of error and initiate the relevant internal documentation
(b) Acknowledge complaint in writing; send copy of the protocol and complaint form (if complaint not received in writing) together with an indication of the timescale for investigating the issues
(c) Notify the relevant Harmans fee earner
(d) Review the Harmans file/ bill and any other documents held together with client file (if
available)
(e) Discussion/ meeting with Harmans fee earner to seek their views
(f) Discuss with complainant
(g) Prepare report setting out issues and the decision, offering an explanation and where
appropriate offering appropriate redress. Advising also of any system changes and or other actions to be made as a result of the complaint
(h) Provide a copy of the report to Harmans fee earner and discuss findings if appropriate
(i) Send report to complainant together with details of the further steps that can be taken in the event that they are not happy with the outcome
(j) Take appropriate steps regarding warnings/ sanctions/ education for Harmans fee earner and circulate relevant conclusions to all Harmans fee earners
(k) Follow up with complainant

 

Timescales
In certain instances, we may require further time to consider and respond to the issues raised but we shall alert you to any extension of time proposed subject always to an overall eight week time limit.

 

Not satisfied?
If having exhausted our Complaints Procedure you still do not feel that your complaint has been satisfactorily addressed then you can direct your complaint within 12 months to:

Costs Lawyers Standards Board at Centurion House, 129 Deansgate, Manchester, M3 3WR; Tel: 0161 956 8969 or email: enquiries@clsb.info and the website is www.clsb.info

or
The Legal Ombudsman at PO Box 15870, Birmingham, B30 9EB; Tel. 0300 555 0333;
email: enquiries@legalombudsman.org.uk and the website is http://www.legalombudsman.org.uk.