I read the article by John Hyde entitled ‘Progress slow on standards’ with increasing disgruntlement over my coffee on Friday morning.
What exactly does the Legal Services Board want the profession to do? Apparently, on diversity, data shows entry levels matching the make-up of the population – so far, so good, one would think. Apparently, being in line with the country is not good enough. And then there is consumer satisfaction; there have been fewer complaints than expected to the new Legal Ombudsman. It is a cause for celebration, I would suggest, that our clients do not feel it necessary to make a complaint – but again, no.
Instead of rejoicing that the legal profession is doing a good job and that we have happy clients, it is suggested that the reason for the low level of complaints is because clients do not know where to make their complaint, and that ‘it is difficult to conclude with any confidence that the quality of legal services [has] improved’. On what basis is this assumption made?
In any other profession, fewer complaints made than previously would clearly bring about the conclusion that quality of service had improved, or else what is the reason for collecting the data about complaints in the first place? By the time I reached the end of the article, my coffee tasted very bitter, and so did my career choice.
Deborah Murphy, St Helens Law, St Helens