Complaints Policy

Definition of a Complaint

A Complaint is any expression of dissatisfaction, however made, about the standard of service, action or lack of action, advice or lack of advice by Goodall Barnett James solicitors or its staff, which affects any individual or group of individuals.

Our complaints Policy

Goodall Barnett James Solicitors are committed to providing a high quality legal service to all our clients. It is our intent to act with integrity and in the best interests of each client and to provide a proper standard of service. Therefore when something goes wrong we need you to tell us about it. This will help us to improve our standards.

Our Complaints Procedure

We want to ensure that client complaints are dealt with promptly, fairly, openly and effectively and that clients are given information about their right to complain to the Client Care Partner of the company for a response and/or resolution. We also want to give further information of the client’s right to take the complaint to the Legal Ombudsman if the client is not satisfied with the firm’s response and/or resolution.

If you have a complaint, please contact Adam James, our Client Care Director. You can contact him at: Goodall Barnett James

7a High Street Horley

If a complaint is made against our Client Care Director Adam James then the complaint will be passed to our Senior Solicitor/Advocate Laura Plant to deal with.

What will happen next?

  1. We will send you a letter acknowledging you complain and asking you to confirm or explain the details set out. We will let you know the name of the person who will be dealing with your complaint. You can expect to receive our letter within two working days of us receiving your complaint.
  2. We will record your complaint in our central register and open a file for your complaint. We will do this within one working day of receiving your complaint.
  3. We will then start to investigate your complaint. This may involve one or more of the following steps.

• We may ask the member of staff who acted for you to reply to your complaint within five days.

We may examine their reply and the information in your complaint file. We may then ask them for more information. This will take up to three days from receiving their reply and the file.

Reviewed 05.01.23

  1. We will then invite you to meet with the person investigating your complaint to discuss and hopefully resolve your complaint. We will do this within three days of receiving all the details we need from the member of staff who acted for you.
  2. Within two days of the meeting we will write to you to confirm what took place and any solutions we have agreed with you. If you do not want a meeting or it is not possible, we will send you a detailed reply to your complaint. This will include our suggestions for resolving the matter. This will happen in within five days of us completing our investigation.
  3. If this resolution is not to your satisfaction you can contact us again. We will then arrange to review our decision. This will happen in one of the following ways.
  • The person investigation the complaint will review his/her decision within five days.
  • We will arrange for someone in the firm who has not been involved in your complaint to review it. They will do this within ten days
  • Adam James, our Client Care Partner, will review your complaint within ten days.
  • We will ask our local Law Society or another firm of solicitors to review your

    complaint. We will let you know how long this process will take.

  • We will invite you to agree to independent mediation. We will let you know how

    long this will take.

7. We will let you know the result of the review within five days of the end of the review. At this time we write to you confirming our final position on your complaint and explaining our reasons.

What to do if we cannot resolve your complaint

The Legal Ombudsman can help you if we are unable to resolve your complaint ourselves. 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

  • 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.

If you would like more information about the Legal Ombudsman, please contact them.

Contact details

Call: 0300 555 0333 between 9.00 to 17.00.
Legal Ombudsman PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton, WV1 9WJ

What to do if you are unhappy with our behaviour

The Solicitors Regulation Authority can help if you are concerned about our behaviour. This could be for things like dishonesty, taking or losing your money or treating you unfairly because of your age, a disability or other characteristic.
Visit their website to see how you can raise your concerns with the Solicitors Regulation Authority.

It is our intent that this Complaints Policy is transparent and fully understood by all, so if you have any difficulty in understanding any part of it, please contact us and we will explain it to you

Reviewed 05.01.23