Mon - Fri 10:00-18:00 01204 221111
enquiries@erichsmith.co.uk
Mon - Fri 10:00-18:00 01204 221111
enquiries@erichsmith.co.uk
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SERVICE LEVELS AND COMPLAINTS

Call us on 01204 221111 to speak with one of our specialist property lawyers.

Our aim is to provide you with the best possible service. However, if at any point you become unhappy or concerned about the service we have provided then you should inform us immediately, so that we can do our best to resolve the problem.

In the first instance it may be helpful to contact the person who is working on your case to discuss your concerns and we will do our best to resolve any issues at this stage. If you would like to make a formal complaint, then you can read our full complaints procedure here below. Rest assured that making a complaint will not affect how we handle your case.

WHAT DO TO IF WE CANNOT RESOLVE YOUR COMPLAINT?

The Legal Ombudsman can 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
  • No more than six years from the date of act/omission
  • No more than three years from when you should reasonably have known there was cause for complaint.

If you would like more information about the Legal Ombudsman, please contact them directly on the following details:

Visit: www.legalombudsman.org.uk
Call: 0300 555 0333 between 9.00am and 5.00pm.
Email: enquiries@legalombudsman.org.uk
Post: Legal Ombudsman PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton, WV1 9WJ

We are regulated by The Solicitors Regulation Authority who can help you if you are concerned about our behaviour. This could be for things like dishonesty, taking or losing your money or treating you unfairly because of your age, a disability or other characteristic. Such concerns can be raised directly with the Solicitors Regulation Authority.

AVERAGE TIMESCALES ON OUR SERVICES.

We aim to complete standard residential purchase transaction within 4-6 weeks of receipt of the contract paperwork, search results and the mortgage offer if your are purchasing with the aid of a mortgage and with similar cooperation from the seller’s solicitors.

We aim to complete standard residential sale transaction within 4-5 weeks of issuing contract with similar cooperation from the buyer’s solicitors.

Please note that any transaction which involves flats, shared ownership, new builds, staircasing etc take longer to reach completion and we shall advise you accordingly.

We are committed to providing quality legal service to all our clients. Consequently, it is essential, when something goes wrong or any client believes they have reason to complain, that we have effective procedures to assist complete an early resolution of the problem. Only by doing so can we hope to maintain the quality standards we have set, and improve them by learning from what may have gone wrong and what our clients tell us.

OUR COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE

In making your complaint it would be necessary for you to provide details of your concerns in writing (if you have not already done so). If you would prefer not to have to do this, please arrange to see us and we will be pleased to take details from you.

Please send your Complaint to:

The Practice Manager
Eric Smith Law Limited
Landmark House
12 Chorley New Road
Bolton
BL1 4AP

WHAT WILL HAPPEN NEXT

  • We will register your complaint on our Register (for monitoring and management information purposes). Timescale: Within 2 working days of receipt of complaint.
  • We will acknowledge receipt of your complaint and request your confirmation or seek any necessary clarification. We will also confirm who will deal with your complaint. Timescale: Within 3 working days of receipt of complaint.
  • We will then commence investigation of your complaint. This may involve one or more of the following steps:
  • We will within 2 working days ask the case worker who acted for you to provide us with a response to your complaint within 5 days working.
  • We will then examine the response from the fee earner and the file as against your complaint and, if necessary, speak further to the case worker. Timescale: Within 3 working days of receipt of the response from the fee earner and reviewing the file. Please note that if the file has been achieved we will need 2 further working days to ensure the file is allocated from our achieving system.
  • The firm's client care Supervisor will consider your complaint considering what the file reveals and the case worker's response. The firm's client care Supervisor will then write to you with a detailed response and inviting you to meet with us to discuss and hopefully resolve your complaint. Timescale: Within a further 7 working days
  • If a meeting between us takes place we will write to you to confirm what took place and detailing any agreed solution that was reached. Timescale: Within 3 working days of the meeting
  • If a meeting is declined or is for some reason impractical we will write to you again in an endeavour to resolve the complaint to our mutual satisfaction. Timescale: Within 7 working days of the meeting being declined
  • If, at a meeting or from your written reply to our detailed written response, you remain dissatisfied with what we have said and how we propose resolving your complaint, we will arrange for our decision to be reviewed. This may happen in one of the following ways: -
  • Our own review of our handling of your complaint and why you are dissatisfied with our decision Timescale: Within 7 working days.
  • By arranging for someone else in the firm who is entirely unconnected with the complaint to review how it was handled and the decision taken. Timescale: Within 12 working days.
  • By asking our local law society or another local firm of solicitors to review our handling of, and the decision on, your complaint (if they are willing to do this). This might take the form of mediation or some other type of alternative dispute resolution. Timescale: Within 12 working days
  • After the review has taken place you will be informed of the outcome. Timescale: Within 7 working days of the conclusion of the review.
  • If you still remain dissatisfied with how your complaint has been handled and the decision on it, we will write to you confirming our final position on your complaint and explaining why we consider our handling of it, and our decision (and the result of any review), were reasonable. If you remain dissatisfied at the end of our complaints process, you would then be at liberty to contact the Legal Ombudsman, whose details are:-

Address: PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton, WV1 9WJ.
Telephone: 0300 555 0333.
e-mail: enquiries@legalombudsman.org.uk.
website: www.legalombudsman.org.uk.

That organisation is the statutory body to whom you may refer your complaint, once we have concluded our professional obligation to try to resolve it. For information on time limits please contact the Legal Ombudsman.