Chief legal ombudsman Adam Sampson appears unwilling to engage in a proper dialogue, insisting as he does that the consultation about publication is ended and the decision to publish is fixed. He did not mention the judicial review claims against the LeO that this policy has encouraged.
He tells solicitors how best to act in dealing with complaints, yet my experience of dealing with the LeO’s decision to publish a determination about my firm is that the LeO considers it appropriate, through in-house counsel, to threaten my firm with the costs of junior and leading counsel and a report to the Solicitors Regulation Authority, to bring any discussion to an end. In other words, precisely how solicitors are told not to react to a complaint was precisely how the LeO reacted to my complaint.
What is even more interesting is that the Office for Legal Complaints, in its report to parliament, does not publish the detail of the complaints against its organisation.
It is all very well the LeO preaching to solicitors about how complaints should be handled, but it would be better if the LeO and the Office for Legal Complaints handled and dealt with complaints in like manner.
Michael Robinson, Emmersons Solicitors, Newcastle upon Tyne