Our approach to complaints and concerns

1.1.        LexLeyton is the trading name of Leyton UK Partners LLP and Leyton Legal (Scotland) LLP. These firms work together to make sure that you have the best client-service possible. This also extends to working properly together to resolve any concerns or complaints in a transparent manner.

1.2.        We are committed to providing high quality legal advice and client care. We hope that all our clients will be completely satisfied with our service. If, however, you are unhappy about any aspect of the service you have received, or about your bill, we want to help you resolve that concern or complaint to your satisfaction wherever possible.

Which firm has primary responsibility for dealing with your complaint or concern?

1.3.        Unless exceptional circumstances apply, the named business (LLP firm) that sent you our Engagement Letter will take primary responsibility for managing your concern or complaint.

Informal complaints procedure

1.4.        If you are unhappy about any aspect of the service you have received, you should contact the solicitor dealing with your service in the first instance. Your solicitor will do their best to resolve the matter with you.

1.5.        If the matter is not resolved at this stage, you should contact their supervisor, as detailed in your Engagement Letter, who will then review your complaint and concern and attempt to resolve it to your satisfaction.

1.6.        If you are not satisfied with the solution or outcome proposed by your solicitor or their supervisor, then you are invited to use our formal (non-contractual) complaints procedure below.

Formal complaints procedure

1.7.        To progress a formal complaint, you should contact our Client Care team, who will record the details of your complaint or concern and engage the process outlined below in order to remedy or resolve your complaint or concern.

1.8.        You can contact our Client Care team using the following contact details.

  • Phone: 0203 871 6345
  • Email:   client@lexleyton.co.uk
  • Post: LexLeyton, Harmsworth House, 13-15 Bouverie Street, London, EC4Y 8DP

1.9.        To understand your complaint or concern, it would be helpful if you would provide the following details when contacting us.

  • Your name and contact details and preferred method of contact.
  • Your client reference number.
  • The details of your complaint or concern, to include the events leading up to or causing the complaint or concern to arise.
  • How you would like us to put things right.

How our Client Care team will resolve your formal complaint or concern

1.10.      Upon taking your call or receiving your email or letter, we will write to you within three working days. We will acknowledge receipt of your complaint or concern. We will set out who will be investigating it and when they will reply to you.

1.11.      A member of our Client Care team will then conduct an investigation. This process may involve contacting you again in order to clarify certain aspects of your complaint or concern; or the details or events associated with it.

1.12.      This member of our Client Care team will then write to you with their findings and discuss any proposed action plans or proposed resolutions. In doing so, they will identify for you which LLP is most directly associated with your compliant or concern.

1.13.      If this initial investigation/outcome process does not resolve your concern or complaint, you can then write to our Head of Client Care using the same details as set out above for our Client Care team.

1.14.      We will then write to you within three working days. We will acknowledge receipt of your complaint or concern. We will then seek to clarify with you the nature of the outstanding issue, complaint or concern. A further investigation/review will then take place. You will then receive our final response in writing.

1.15.      We aim to conclude this process within 21 days of receiving your formal complaint. Where this is not possible, you will be provided with regular updates and given realistic timescales. We will take all reasonable steps to ensure that this process does not extend beyond eight weeks of receiving your formal complaint.

Taking your complaint further

1.16.      Different options may be open to you depending on what your complaint or concern relates to; and whether it relates to the acts or Leyton UK Partners LLP or the acts of Leyton Legal (Scotland) LLP.

1.17.      We anticipate that by the time of exploring the options below, the issue concerning which LLP the complaint/concern relates to will have become clear. Our client care team will have identified this for you.. You are welcome to ask us for further clarity on this issue if you wish.

Complaints to a regulator concerning the acts of Leyton UK Partners LLP

1.18.      It is open to you review the following options in relation to complaints or concerns regarding:

  • the service of Leyton UK Partners LLP;
  • the conduct of a solicitor working for Leyton UK Partners LLP;
  • the adequacy of the internal complaints procedure used by Leyton UK Partners LLP.

1.19.      Your options are as follows.

  • Referral to the Legal Ombudsman. If we are unable to resolve your complaint within 8 weeks of receiving full details, you may have the right to refer it to the Legal Ombudsman. They will look at your complaint independently and it will not affect how we handle your case. Before accepting a complaint for investigation, the Legal Ombudsman will check that you have tried to resolve your complaint with us first. If you have, then you must take your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman:
  • within six months of receiving a final response to your complaint; and
  • no more than six years from the date of act/omission; or
  • no more than three years from when you should reasonably have known there was cause for complaint.

1.20.      The Legal Ombudsman deals with complaints by consumers and very small businesses. This means some clients may not have the right to complain to the Legal Ombudsman, e.g. charities or clubs with an annual income of more than £1m, trustees of trusts with asset value of more than £1m and most businesses (unless they are defined as micro-enterprises). This does not prevent you from making a complaint directly to us about the service you have received or about a bill.

1.21.      If you would like more information about the Legal Ombudsman, please contact them. The contact details for the Legal Ombudsman are as follows.

Legal Ombudsman,
PO Box 6806,
Wolverhampton
WV1 9WJ.
0300 555 0333
enquiries@legalombudsman.org.uk
www.legalombudsman.org.uk

1.22.      Referral to the Solicitors Regulation Authority. The Solicitors Regulation Authority can help you if you are concerned about our behaviour. This could be about dishonesty, taking or losing your money or treating you unfairly because of your age, a disability or other characteristic. Contact details for the Solicitors Regulation Authority are as follows.

SRA Contact centre
The Cube
199 Wharfside Street
Birmingham
DX 720293 BIRMINGHAM 47
0370 606 2555
contactcentre@sra.org.uk

1.23.      Referral to the Financial Ombudsman Service. If your unresolved complaint relates to an insurance policy covering your matter (as opposed to the conduct of a solicitor arranging it), then you may contact the Financial Ombudsman Service using the following details.

Phone: 0800 023 4657
Email: complaint.info@financial-ombudsman.org.uk
Post: Financial Ombudsman Service, Exchange Tower, London, E14 9SR

1.24.      Applying to court for a detailed assessment of a bill. You will have the right to challenge any interim bill and the final bill by applying to the court to assess the bill under Part III of the Solicitors Act 1974. Please be aware that the time limits run from the date of each individual bill.

1.25.      If the application is made after one month but before twelve months from delivery of the bill, the court’s permission is required for the bill to be assessed.

1.26.      Unless there are special circumstances, the court will not usually order a bill to be assessed after 12 months from delivery of the bill or after a judgment has been obtained for the recovery of the costs covered by the bill. Please note that the Legal Ombudsman may decline to entertain a complaint regarding a bill if you are pursuing this route.

1.27.      Alternative Dispute Resolution. We are aware that alternative approved complaints bodies such as ProMediate do exist, which are competent to deal with complaints about legal services and can be used if we both agree. However, as you are able to use the services of the Legal Ombudsman we do not intend to use their scheme.

1.28.      Useful details regarding Leyton UK Partners LLP

1.29.      Leyton UK Partners LLP is a limited partnership registered in England and Wales (number OC388386) with a registered address at Harmsworth House, 13-15 Bouverie Street, London EC4Y 8DP.

1.30.      Leyton UK Partners LLP is an Alternative Business Structure (ABS) authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) under licence number 619453 in respect of legal work.

1.31.      Leyton UK Partners LLP also carries out R&D funding related consultancy services and these R&D funding services are not regulated by the SRA.

1.32.      Complaints to a regulator regarding the acts of Leyton Legal (Scotland) LLP

It is open to you review the following options in relation to complaints or concerns regarding:

  • the service of Leyton Legal (Scotland) LLP;
  • the conduct of a solicitor working for Leyton Legal (Scotland) LLP;
  • the adequacy of the internal complaints procedure used by Leyton Legal (Scotland) LLP.

1.33.      Scottish Legal Complaints Commission. If we are unable to resolve your complaint, you may have the right to refer it to the Scottish Legal Complaints Commission (the ‘SLCC’). You should raise your complaint with them within one year of the service ending or the conduct occurring.

Contact details for the Scottish Legal Complaints Commission (the ‘SLCC’) are:

The Stamp Office 
10-14 Waterloo Place 
Edinburgh 
EH1 3EG 
0131 201 2130 

1.34.      Applying to court for a taxation of a bill. You will have the right to challenge any interim bill and the final bill by applying to the Auditor of Court to look at it and either approve or reduce it. This process is called taxation. The Auditor of Court will charge for carrying out a taxation: if they decide your bill is too high, we will have to pay the charge, but if the Auditor decides the bill is reasonable, you will have to pay both the bill and the charge.

1.35.      Alternative Dispute Resolution. We are aware that alternative approved complaints bodies such as ProMediate do exist, which are competent to deal with complaints about legal services and can be used if we both agree. However, as you are able to use the services of the Scottish Legal Complaints Commission, we do not intend to use their scheme.

1.36.      Referral to the Financial Ombudsman Service. If your unresolved complaint relates to an insurance policy covering your matter (as opposed to the conduct of a solicitor arranging it), then you may contact the Financial Ombudsman Service using the following details.

Phone: 0800 023 4657
Email: complaint.info@financial-ombudsman.org.uk
Post: Financial Ombudsman Service, Exchange Tower, London, E14 9SR

1.37.      Useful details regarding Leyton Legal (Scotland) LLP

1.38.      Leyton Lgal (Scotland) LLP is a limited liability partnership registerd in Scotland (SO305978). Registered office 8th Floor, Lomond House, 9 George Square, Glasgow, G2 1DY. Authorised and regulated by the Law Society of Scotland.

2.  APPLICABLE LAW GOVERNING THESE TERMS

2.1. Any dispute or legal issue arising from our Terms in respect of the conduct of Leyton UK Partners LLP will be determined by the law of England and Wales and considered exclusively by the English and Welsh courts.

2.2. Any dispute or legal issue arising from our Terms in respect of the conduct of Leyton Legal (Scotland) LLP will be determined by the law of Scotland and considered exclusively by the Scottish courts.

2.3. In case of any ambiguity or dispute as to which court/laws apply, we shall have the exclusive right to determine which entity was most closely connected to the conduct giving rise to the complaint or claim and therefore which laws and courts have jurisdiction.