Our Complaints Policy

The Firm is committed to providing a high-quality legal service to all our clients. When something goes wrong, we need our clients to tell us about it. This will help improve our standards. Whenever possible, please raise any initial client care problems with the person acting on your case to give them the opportunity of resolving matters with you. Often, matters can be quickly resolved in this way.

If you are unhappy about any aspect of the service you have received, or about the bill, please contact the firm by post to our office at 9 Finkle Street, Carlisle, Cumbria CA3 8UU, by telephone on 01228 402069 or by email ct@carlislecriminallaw.co.uk. We have a procedure in place which details how we handle complaints as follows:

Our Procedures

  1. We will send you a letter acknowledging receipt of your complaint within five working days of receiving it, enclosing a copy of this procedure.
  2. We will investigate your complaint. This will normally involve passing your complaint to Our Complaints Partner, (Chris Toms, our COLP and COFA), who will review your matter file. If the complaint is about the Complaints partner the matter will be passed to Mark Shepherd.
  3. We will then invite you to a meeting to discuss and hopefully resolve your complaint. We will do this within 10 working days of sending you the acknowledgement letter.
  4. Within five working days of that meeting we will write to you to confirm what took place and any solutions that have been agreed with you.
  5. If you do not want a meeting, or it is not possible, you will be sent a detailed written reply to your complaint, including the suggestions for resolving the matter, within 15 working days days of sending you the acknowledgement latter.
  6. At this stage, if you are still not satisfied, you should contact us again and we will review the decision.
  7. We will write to you within 10 working days of receiving your request for a review, confirming our final position on your complaint and explaining our reasons.
  8. If you are still not satisfied with our handling of your complaint you can ask

The Legal Ombudsman

to consider the complaint. Contact details are as follows:

Address: PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton WV1 9WJ
Telephone: 0300 555 0333
Email: enquiries@legalombudsman.org.uk
Website: www.legalombudsman.org.uk

Normally, you will need to bring a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman no later than 12 months after you discovered the problem and within 6 months of receiving a final written response from us about your complaint. We would hope that this does not become necessary and that we can resolve matters between ourselves.  If this is not the case however, we would be happy to provide you with the necessary information to make such a complaint.

If we have to change any of the above timescales we will let you know and explain why.

The complaints procedure also includes complaints arising concerning our bill. There may also be a right to object to the bill by applying to the court for an assessment of the bill under Part III of the Solicitors Act 1974; and that if all, or part, of a bill remains unpaid, the firm may be entitled to charge interest.      

If you are still not satisfied, with the Ombudsman’s decision.
You feel we may have breached a Solicitors Regulation Authority Principle: you can contact the
Solicitors’ Regulation Authority directly.
Via their website SRA – ‘For the public’- Problems with a solicitor’ section.

Postal address:-
Solicitors Regulation Authority,
The Cube, 199 Wharfside Street,
Birmingham, B1 1RN