LETTER:Complain and we'll listen

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The Independent Online
From Mr Martin O'Reilly

Sir: I am dismayed by the suggestion in your editorial "When lawyers let us down" (17 January), that dissatisfied clients should not bother to complain about their solicitors. Such language leaves consumers with the impression that they have no form of redress and ignores the thousands of cases each year that are dealt with to the satisfaction of complainants.

The survey findings were indeed disappointing and we do not view them with any level of complacency. But they need to be taken in context. The results refer to matters investigated between 18 and 24 months ago. Since that time, significant changes have been made at the Solicitors Complaints Bureau. We are committed to continuous improvement, to the fair and effective investigation of complaints and to the maintenance of standards within the profession.

The solicitors' profession cherishes its right to self-regulation and will do everything in its power to ensure that any new regulatory body is dedicated to providing a satisfactory service to all its users.

Yours faithfully,

Martin O'Reilly

Acting Director

Solicitors Complaints Bureau

Leamington Spa, Warwickshire

18 January