Complaints 2019—law firms

The following Practice Compliance practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Complaints 2019—law firms
  • Regulation of complaints
  • LSB requirements
  • LeO requirements
  • SRA requirements
  • SRA Principles
  • SRA Codes
  • SRA Guidance
  • Lexcel and good practice
  • Complaints handling procedures
  • More...

Complaints 2019—law firms

This Practice Note reflects requirements in the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) Codes of Conduct 2019 in relation to complaints, in force from 25 November 2019. See Practice Note: Complaints—SRA 2011 regime and SRA 2019 regime compared for a comparison of the requirements of the 2011 and 2019 regimes.

The SRA's core regulatory requirements in relation to complaints are found in the SRA Code for Solicitors 2019 and the SRA Code for Firms 2019, which should be read in the context of the SRA Principles 2019.

The Standards and Regulations are accompanied by case studies and guidance in a variety of formats, such as Q&As, warning notices, decision trees and ‘topic guidance’.

Regulation of complaints

The SRA does not deal with complaints from members of the public about the service they receive from solicitors and/or law firms, although the SRA Codes of Conduct contain requirements with which individuals and firms must comply in relation to complaints.

The Legal Ombudsman (LeO) is responsible for dealing with complaints about service made by individuals and small businesses or charities about legal service providers, including law firms. LeO operates under its Scheme Rules.

Lexcel is the Law Society's voluntary practice management standard. The requirements of the Lexcel standards should be considered compulsory for firms that have or are working towards Lexcel accreditation—they are not compulsory for other firms although they provide an indicator

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