Keystone Law is committed to providing a high-quality legal service to all our clients. When something goes wrong, we need to address the problem and your concerns. This will help us to improve our standards and we review complaints received annually for this reason.
This policy sets out how we deal with formal complaints. If you feel your concerns might be better addressed by speaking with the members of the firm acting for you, then you should contact them first. You can make use of this policy at any time and should you do so, it will not affect our instructions and the services we provide to you, though it may in some instances create a conflict of interest (as explained below).
Once you have made a complaint, we will respond in the manner set out in this Complaints Policy.
What should you do if you have a complaint?
If you have a complaint, you should write to The Complaints Director, Keystone Law, 1st Floor, 48 Chancery Lane, London, WC2A 1JF. Your letter should set out the full details of your complaint, including what you feel went wrong and what remedy you seek. You should enclose all relevant correspondence or documentation to support your complaint. We recommend using special delivery when corresponding with us about a complaint. That way, you will know when we have received your complaint.
The Complaints Policy applies to all complaints, including complaints raised by parties who are not our client. If you wish to complain but are not our client, you should note that client confidentiality rules may determine the nature of our response.
Complaints and conflicts of interest
As a regulated firm of solicitors, we must comply with our professional rules. These require us not to act where we may find ourselves in a position of a conflict of interest. A conflict of interest may arise in a situation where on the one hand we have a duty to act in your best interest and on the other hand there may be a perceived preference for the firm to defend its own interests in light of the complaints raised.
This should in no way affect whether you choose to make a complaint. However, you should be aware that there are circumstances where, once you have made a complaint, we may no longer be able to act for you on the matter. In this case we would let you know and discuss with you how best to proceed, bearing in mind our overriding duty to comply with our professional rules.
What will happen once we have received your complaint?
- We will send you a letter acknowledging receipt of your complaint within three working days of our receipt of the complaint, enclosing a copy of this Complaints Policy.
- We will start to investigate your complaint. This will normally involve passing your complaint to an appropriate person such as William Robins, who will independently review your matter file and speak to the relevant individual(s), including those named in the complaint.
- Where we believe a telephone conversation could assist in resolving the complaint, then, within 8 days of receiving your complaint, we will endeavour to resolve your complaint by agreement over the telephone.
- Where we speak with you on the telephone and are unable to resolve your complaint by agreement within 8 days or where we do not believe a telephone conversation would be appropriate, then within eight weeks of receiving your complaint, we will write to you with our findings, which may include a suggested solution where appropriate.
- If you are still not satisfied or if we have not written to you within eight weeks of receiving your complaint, then you can contact the Legal Ombudsman and ask them to review the matter.
Any complaint to the Legal Ombudsman must usually be made within 6 months of the date of our sending you our findings or our having failed to respond within eight weeks of our receiving your complaint and within six years of the date of the relevant act or omission, or no more than three years from when you should reasonably have known there was cause for complaint.
For further information, you should contact the Legal Ombudsman as follows:
Post: Legal Ombudsman, PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton WV1 9WJ
Telephone: 0300 555 0333
Finally, please note that where it is reasonable to do so, we may increase some of the timescales detailed above. If this is the case, then we will inform you in writing and we shall provide a reasonable explanation as why we have extended the time periods. Examples of such explanations include where you have multiple complaints that all need to be investigated, or where it takes longer than anticipated to contact an important witness whose evidence is necessary for our investigation.