Receiving a complaint is always disappointing.
None of us go to work to do a bad job and when a customer feels the need to express their dissatisfaction with the service that they have received from your firm it can be disheartening.
Of course, not all complaints are justified and receiving a complaint does not automatically mean that a law firms, its departments and teams are at fault. Whatever the circumstances, it’s a sad fact that dealing with that complaint is going to dip into resources of time and energy that most firms would probably rather have their staff direct towards more important matters – such as progressing client work, training staff or even leaving the office on time!
How do you handle complaints effectively?
The Legal Ombudsman’s Deputy Chief Ombudsman, Steven Pearson, gave a headline presentation at the Legal Eye Annual conference in June during which he outlined some of the key steps to take to resolve complaints quickly and effectively:
In 2020/2021 the LeO received 6,246 contacts from customers wanting to complain about their lawyer who had not raised a formal complaint with the service provider first.
LeO Top 5 Tips:
- Make your complaints contact information more prominent on your website
- Provide a way for clients to complain online
- Make it clear how they can complain and who they contact- include this in your initial client care letter.
- Most importantly recognise the complaint and address them.
- Ensure all details for the LeO are in your communications both at the beginning and at the end of your relationship with a client.
Outsource and save valuable time and money
Drawing on Legal Eye’s experienced team of complaints handlers you will be able to free up time to focus on other things as well as to achieve a high-resolution rate for your complaints whilst keeping sensible control on the amount of compensation or goodwill payments that you may need to make.
Our complaints handling service provides an entirely flexible, independent and methodical approach to resolving complaints whilst still leaving the firm in control.
The service includes:
- An independent review of the client’s complaint
- Preparation of a response following a review of the client’s file, alongside consideration of the Legal Ombudsman Scheme Rules
- Provide suggested areas of improvement to combat the reoccurrence of a complaint of a similar nature
- We will deal with the first response complaint and can also deal with complex investigations for your contact with LeO when required
- Provide monthly, quarterly or annual reports on complaints investigated, including trends and root cause analysis.
Legal Eye’s Associates are former Solicitors, Partners and Directors in law firms; former SRA and Legal Ombudsman risk and compliance professionals and have experience in working across all areas of legal practice, for example; private client, litigation and conveyancing (in particular high volume transactional/ re-mortgage work).
Read more about how the team can help remove the headache of complaints handling here.