We aim to provide an excellent quality of service at all times. If, however, you have a complaint, we invite you to follow the procedure below.
A formal complaint must be raised as soon as reasonably possible, and in any event, within 12 months of the act being complained of.
- Please address all complaints in writing to the Director of Clerking, Guy Williams.
- If the complaint is about the Director of Clerking, please address it to the Heads of Chambers (Tyrone Smith KC and Nicola Howard KC).
- Please make clear:
- Your name and contact details
- The precise nature of your complaint
- How you would like it to be resolved
- Your complaint will be acknowledged where possible within seven days and considered and actioned by the Director of Clerking/Heads of Chambers within 28 days.
- We may refer the investigation of your complaint to an independent dispute resolution service.
- The substantive reply will include:
- the nature and scope of the investigation
- a conclusion on each complaint and the basis for this conclusion; and
- in the case of a complaint which is found to be justified, proposals for resolution.
- If you are dissatisfied with a decision or any part of it, you may ask for it to be reviewed within chambers and/or you may refer the complaint to the Legal Ombudsman.
- A record will be kept of all complaints and resolutions, and conversations and correspondence relating to them.
All conversations and documents relating to the complaint will be treated as confidential and will be disclosed only to the extent that is necessary. Disclosure will be to the Head of Chambers, members of our Management Committee and to anyone involved in the complaint and its investigation. Such people will include the barrister member or staff who you have complained about and the person who investigates the complaint. We may also refer the investigation of your complaint to an independent dispute resolution service. If we do, they are bound by the same confidentiality regulations. The Bar Standards Board is entitled to inspect the documents and seek information about the complaint when discharging its auditing and monitoring functions.
As part of our commitment to client care, we make a written record of formal complaints and retain all documents and correspondence generated by the complaint for a period of six years. A summary of the (anonymised) record is inspected regularly with a view to improving services.
Complaints to the Legal Ombudsman
We hope that you will use our procedure. However, if you would rather not do so or are unhappy with the outcome you may take up your complaint with the Legal Ombudsman.
The time limits for referring a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman must be no later than:
- one year from the date of the act or omission being complained about; or
- one year from the date when the complainant should have realised that there was cause for complaint.
You can write to the Legal Ombudsman at: Office of the Legal Services Ombudsman, PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton WV1 9WJ
T: 0300 555 0333 (charged at local rates – available nationally from mobiles and landlines).
See also: www.legalombudsman.org.uk and details of cases decided by the Legal Ombudsman in the past 12 months.
Complaints to the Bar Standards Board
If your complaint concerns a barrister who is not representing you and you are not satisfied with the outcome of our internal client satisfaction procedure, you should contact the Bar Standards Board. They can be contacted online by clicking here, by telephone on 020 7611 1444 or in writing at: Bar Standards Board, 289 -293 High Holborn, London WC1V 7HZ.
The BSB Barristers' Register shows barristers who hold a current Practising Certificate and also whether they have any disciplinary findings against them.
The clerks room are the backbone of chambers. They are without doubt second-to-none. They never let you down.
Legal 500 2021