Our complaints handling policy

We are committed to providing a high-quality legal service to all our clients. However, if something goes wrong or you have a concern over your invoice, you need to tell us about it as soon as possible. This helps us to improve our service. We aim to deal promptly, fairly and effectively with any complaint a client may have about any aspect of our service.

Informal resolution

Minor concerns can often be resolved by informal discussion with the person responsible for a particular matter. We encourage clients with concerns to raise them with the solicitor or fee earner looking after their case in the first instance as a quick and mutually agreeable resolution may be possible.

How to complain

If you are a client who wishes to make a formal complaint about any aspect of our service, please provide the details of your complaint to our Complaints Officer, Cristina Lawrence, in writing. This can be done by letter or email the details of which are as follows:

Fortis Law
11 Prince Albert Street
Brighton
BN1 1HE

If you are not able to put your complaint to us in writing please let us know and we will do everything possible to accommodate this.

All complaints received by us are recorded in a central register kept by this firm.

Timescales

Please make any complaint as soon as possible but in any event within one year of the issue occurring. We may decline to investigate complaints raised outside those time limits.

Our Investigation

We normally acknowledge each complaint sent to our Complaints Officer within four working days of receipt. The Complaints Officer will send you a letter confirming receipt and informing you of the name of the person who will investigate your complaint as well as provide you with a copy of this policy.

The person carrying out the investigation will establish a separate file for that investigation in order that a written record of it is kept and in order that the investigation file can be readily provided to the Legal Ombudsman if subsequently requested.

The person investigating the complaint will review your complaint with the person handling the matter, consider relevant papers from the file and other records, and make any wider enquiries within the firm as may be necessary. He or she may also ask to meet with you in the course of our investigation, if clarification is needed of any points raised in your complaint.

We will usually respond substantively to a complaint within 28 days (4 weeks) of receipt. If that is not possible, we will let you know when you will receive our full response. We aim always to respond to a complaint within 56 days (8 weeks) of its first being made to us, as this is the period within which the Legal Ombudsman expects firms to respond.

In our substantive response to you, we will:

  • Outline the investigations that we have carried out;
  • Set out our conclusions in relation to your complaint; and
  • Explain how we have reached those conclusions based on our investigation.

If we find that we have fallen short of what you should have expected from us, then we may also:

  • Explain what went wrong;
  • Propose one or more remedies to you; and/or
  • Explain how we have changed our practices to prevent similar problems in the future.

No charge will be made to you for the work done in responding to your complaint.

Legal Ombudsman

If you are not satisfied with the response that we have provided to your complaint, then you may have the right to complain to the Legal Ombudsman. Before you contact the Legal Ombudsman though you must first register a complaint with us following the procedure above.

The Legal Ombudsman deals with complaints against Solicitors and may be contacted at:

Legal Ombudsman
PO Box 6806
Wolverhampton
WV1 9WJ

Tel: 0300 555 0333
http://www.legalombudsman.org.uk

Should you wish to complain to the Legal Ombudsman, you must do so:

  • within six months of the receipt of our final response; and
  • within six years from the date of the act/omission, or three years from when you should have known about the complaint.