Below is my Chambers’ complaints policy (which applies to me):
When you receive notification in writing from us that a case has been booked in a barrister’s diary or that they have accepted instructions, you will be informed about what you should do if we fail to meet your expectations.
We are proud of the service we provide so welcome feedback on any aspect of our service. We share all feedback with counsel or the clerk concerned. We are of course, particularly pleased to hear when the service you have received has been positive, should you have a concern, we will do our very best to deal with that concern to your satisfaction.
Should your concern not be dealt with to your satisfaction, you can make a formal complaint. We will always ask if your negative feedback could be dealt with as a concern in the first instance so that we can try to resolve matters to your satisfaction.
A complaint is an expression of dissatisfaction that requires a formal written reply.
You may raise your concern directly with our Chambers Director, Martin Davies by sending an email or letter to firstname.lastname@example.org or by post or DX to:
or DX 232 London Chancery Lane
or by calling in the first instance 0300 0300 218.(8.30am to 6pm)
If you are dissatisfied with the outcome of our internal complaints process, you may contact the Legal Ombudsman. Please see details below. Lay clients may complain directly to their barrister without the need to go through their instructing solicitor.
Where the instructions were received on a public access basis using an intermediary, we must inform the intermediary of the complaint.
We aim to deal with any concern before it becomes a complaint. If we cannot resolve your concern in a way that you are completely satisfied with, we will agree with you that your concern will be escalated to a complaint. Alternatively, you may raise a complaint in the first instance. We do hope you will discuss it with us first and give us the opportunity to resolve it.
Response to complaints:
1. We will acknowledge your complaint promptly, normally the same day we receive it.
2. Your complaint will be investigated and dealt with by Chambers Director, Martin Davies.
3. You will be advised of the date you can expect to hear from us. We will always aim to deal with matters promptly.
4. Should our response not meet with your approval, you may take the matter further with the Legal Ombudsman service. We will assist the Legal Ombudsman with any enquiries they may make.
Documents and record keeping:
We retain documents and records relating to every aspect of the service we have provided. Our internal systems and case management software provides a real-time audit trail of actions and communications.
We will ensure all documents and data relating to any complaint is kept confidential and only disclosed so far as is necessary for:
(a) the investigation and resolution of the complaint,
(b) internal review for the purposes of improving our practice
(c) complying with requests from the Bar Standards Board in the exercise of its monitoring and or auditing functions.
The disclosure of internal documents relating to the handling of the complaint, such as the minutes of a meeting held to discuss a particular complaint, to the Bar Standards Board for the further resolution or investigation of the complaint is not a requirement.
A record will be kept of each complaint, all steps taken in response to it and the outcome of the complaint, together with a copy of all correspondence, including electronic mail, and all other documents generated in response to the complaint.
Records will be retained for a minimum of 6 years as required by the Bar Standards Board. The senior clerk reports annually to the Heads of Chambers setting out the number of complaints received, the subject areas of the complaints and the outcomes.
The complaints are reviewed in order to spot any recurring concerns or negative trends so that we may rectify them and consider possible training issues.
You must contact the Legal Ombudsman either within 6 months following the conclusion of our handling your complaint, within 6 years from the date of the act/omission, or 3 years from the date that you should reasonably have known there were grounds for complaint (if the act/omission took place before the 6 October 2010 or was more than six years ago).
The Legal Ombudsman’s details are as follows:
PO Box 6806
Tel: 0300 555 0333
All barristers’ chambers are required by the Bar Standards Board to publish this link to the Legal Ombudsman’s website regarding their decision data. The Bar Standards Board also require barristers’ chambers to publish this link to the Barristers’ Register page from their website.