Our complaints policy

We are committed to providing a high-quality legal service to all our clients. When something goes wrong we need you to tell us about it. This will help us to improve our standards.

If you are unhappy or concerned about the service then you should immediately inform us.  In the first instance it may be helpful to contact the fee earner conducting your work directly to discuss your concerns in the hope these can be rectified directly.  If this is unsuccessful or you otherwise with to make a formal complaint then the procedure is outlined below.

Our complaints procedure

If you have a complaint, write to us with the details (if you have not already done so) for the attention of Mark Heselden.

Email: markheselden@bwblegal.com

Post: 27 Friars Street, Sudbury, Suffolk CO10 2AD

Alternatively in the first instance, an appointment to discuss matters with Mark Heselden in person can be arranged by telephoning 01787 880440.

3. What will happen next?

  1. We will record your complaint in our central register within a day of receiving it and send you an acknowledgement on the same day.
  2. We will then start to investigate your complaint.  This will normally involve the following steps:We will pass your complaint to Mr. Mark Heselden, our Client Care & Complaints Director, within 3 days.

    Upon receipt of the complaint he will ask the person who acted for you to reply to your complaint normally within 7 days, though this period may have to be extended to allow for absences.

    He will then examine their reply and the information in your complaint and, if necessary, he may also speak to them.  This will take up to 7 days from receiving their reply and the file.

  3. Mr. Heselden will then write to you and, if necessary, ask you to meet him and discuss and hopefully resolve your complaint.  He will do this within one month of receiving your complaint.
  4. If a meeting proves necessary, Mr. Heselden will write to you to confirm what took place and any solutions he has agreed with you within one week of the meeting.  We reserve the right to ask another member of our staff to be present at any meeting and to make a note of what is discussed, a copy of which will be provided to you.If you do not want a meeting or it is not possible, Mr. Heselden will send you a detailed reply to your complaint.  This will include his suggestions for resolving the matter. 
  5. If we have to change any of the timescales above, we will let you know and explain why.

If we cannot resolve your complaint

The Legal Ombudsman may be able to help you if we are unable to resolve your complaint ourselves.  They will look at your complaint independently and it will not affect how we handle your case.

Before accepting a complaint for investigation, the Legal Ombudsman will check that you have tried to resolve your complaint with us first.  If you have, then you must take your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman:

  • Within six months of receiving a final response to your complaint; and
  • No more than six years from the date of act/omission; or
  • No more than three years from when you should reasonably have known there was a cause for a complaint

If you would like more information about the Legal Ombudsman, please contact them directly

Contact Details:

www.legalombudsman.org.uk

0300 555 0333 (between 9am and 5pm)

enquiries@legalombudsman.org.uk

Legal Ombudsman, PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton WV1 9WJ

If you are unhappy with our behaviour

The Solicitors Regulation Authority can help if you are concerned about our behaviour.  This could be for things like dishonest, taking or losing your money or treating you unfairly because of your age, a disability or other characteristic.

Visit their website to see how you can raise your concerns directly with the Solicitors Regulation Authority.

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Please note that Bates Wells & Braithwaite are still operating during the Covid-19 crisis and will be throughout.

 

We have obviously had to make changes both internally and externally as a result of social distancing rules (and the current “lockdown”) and therefore, we are not allowing clients into the building unless it is essential and strictly by appointment only.

 

Work will otherwise continue as normal (or as normal as possible) with meetings and communication taking place via telephone and email instead.

 

Please call us on 01787 880440 to discuss any matters, including new matters. 

 

Please note we will be closing the switchboard for an hour between 1-2pm Monday to Friday until further notice

The office will close at the earlier time of 4pm on Fridays until the end of May 2020

 

Information on costs for many areas, including Wills can be found on our website

 

Thank you

The Directors of Bates Wells & Braithwaite