Complaints Policy

We are committed to providing a high-quality legal service to all clients. When something goes wrong we need you to tell us about it. This will help us to improve our standards and ensure that we provide you with the service to which you are entitled.

Who to contact

If you are unhappy with any aspect of the service which you have received or the costs which you have been charged it is often best to raise your concerns immediately with the lawyer who has been doing the work for you. You were supplied with their contact details when you first instructed us.

However, we understand that you may wish your concerns to be more formally investigated - particularly if your complaint relates to the client partner or you are unhappy with any response you have already received.

How do I make a complaint?

If you want your complaint to be formally investigated please contact:

The Head of Compliance, W H Darbyshire Ltd, 51 Commonside, Ansdell, Lytham St. Annes, Lancashire, FY8 4EX.

OR Email:

Telephone: 01253 736134

In a circumstance you feel that it would be inappropriate for the Head of Compliance to handle the complaint, you may contact our Director for investigation:

Sharon Platt, Director, W H Darbyshire Ltd, 51 Commonside, Ansdell, Lytham St. Annes, Lancashire, FY8 4EX.

OR Email:

OR Telephone: 01253 736134

To help us to understand your complaint, and in order that we do not miss anything, please tell us: -

  1. your full name and contact details
  2. what you think we have got wrong
  3. what you hope to achieve as a result of your complaint, and
    your file reference number (if you have it)

If you require any help in making your complaint we will try to help you.

How will you deal with my complaint?

We may also need to ask you for further information or documents. If so, we will ask you to provide the information within a specific period of time.

We will update you on the progress of your complaint at appropriate times.

  1. We will send you a written acknowledgement of your complaint within 3 working days of receiving it.
  2. Responsibility for investigating your complaint will be assigned to the member of the firm best placed to carry out the investigation. He/she will normally review the file and speak to those who carried out the work.
  3. If appropriate you may be invited to a meeting to discuss, and hopefully resolve, your complaint. If we propose a meeting you will be contacted within 14 days of the sending of the acknowledgement letter.
  4. If a meeting takes place we will write to you within 3 days after it takes place confirming what took place and setting out any solutions which were agreed with you.
  5. If a meeting is not appropriate, or you do not want to meet, we will send you a detailed reply to your complaint setting out any suggestions for resolving the matter. We would normally expect to send this reply within 21 days of sending you the acknowledgement letter. If we are not able to send you a full reply within that period we will update you and tell you when we expect to be able to write to you again.
  6. If you are dealing with us as a private individual or are a very small business, charity, club or trust then you may have a right to refer your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman. You cannot normally refer a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman unless 8 weeks have passed since your complaint to us, but you may do so earlier if we have notified you of our final decision and you remain dissatisfied. Further details of the Legal Ombudsman are set out on the other side of this page.

We will write to you at the end of our investigation to tell you what we have done and what we propose to do to resolve your complaint. Where possible, we will aim to do this within 56 days of receiving your complaint.

If you are still unhappy you can ask the Legal Ombudsman to look into your complaint. You can contact the Legal Ombudsman: -

by post at : -

You must usually refer your complaint within six months of our final written response to your complaint and within six years of the act or omission about which you are complaining occurring (or within three years of you becoming aware of it). Further details are available on the website: Please note that The Legal Ombudsman can only consider complaints from individuals or small companies, charities, clubs or trusts.

What will it cost?

We will not charge you for handling your complaint.

Please note that if we have issued a bill for work done on the matter, and all or some of the bill is not paid, we may be entitled to charge interest on the amount outstanding.

The Legal Ombudsman service is free of charge.

Solicitors Regulation Authority

The Solicitors Regulation Authority can help you if you are concerned about certain issues such as any suggestion of dishonesty on our part, or that we have taken or lost your money, or have treated you unfairly because of your age, a disability or other characteristic.

You can raise your concerns with the Solicitors Regulation Authority: -

Contact details


Call 0370 606 2555 between

8:00 to 18:00 Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday
9:30 to 18:00 Tuesday


Solicitors Regulation Authority, The Cube, 199 Wharfside Street, Birmingham, B1 1RN

Complaints About Costs

If your concern relates to a bill then you have the right to apply to the court for an assessment of the bill under Part III of the Solicitors Act 1974. Please note that the Legal Ombudsman may decide not to consider any complaint you may have about a bill which has already been referred to the court for assessment.

Last Updated 20th January 2022