Law Society fined over complaintsFailed to provide adequate system for complaints

18 May 2006

The Law Society has been fined GBP 250,000 for failing to sort out a proper system for dealing with complaints about lawyers.

The Legal Services Complaints Commissioner (LSCC), Zahida Manzoor, announced the fine after slamming the Law Society's complaints-handling plan as 'inadequate'.

The Law Society, which polices solicitors in England and Wales, had initially been asked to put forward a plan on how it could improve its handling of complaints over 12 months starting from April this year.

Improvements needed

But Ms Manzoor said the plan didn't deliver 'sufficient improvements...which consumers and practitioners expect and deserve'.

Responding to the fine, Law Society President Kevin Martin said: 'The Law Society has a well-documented track record of improvements in complaints-handling. We have established an independent Consumer Complaints Board to oversee it and provided the board with the budget it asked for.

'It is difficult to see what more we could reasonably do and so this fine flies in the face of logic.