All ombudsmen work in areas where it may seem harder for people to have their voices heard and harder for the public to get justice when things go wrong. Before you complain to the legal mediator, you must first complain to the law firm that did your legal work and give them up to 8 weeks to respond. Other areas that ombudsman systems have in common include: Our job is to help resolve disputes between consumers and legal service providers. We do this in two ways: The rules of our system set out the framework within which the legal ombudsman resolves complaints about legal services. These are approved by the Legal Services Council and the Lord Chancellor under the Legal Services Act 2007. You can find more information about our organisation and governance in the corporate section of this website. The Legal Ombudsman may deal with service-related complaints against duly qualified lawyers and licensed law firms that supervise us or another regulatory body. Their service is free for the public. Before investigating, consumers should complain directly to their legal service provider. Providers are required to inform people of their complaint process. We can help legal service providers improve the handling of their complaints. Learn more about how we work and what you can do to deal with complaints before they reach us. We understand that COVID-19 will also affect our customers and in these challenging times, we will do everything in our power to ensure we are as flexible as possible.
We are aware that for some people, their complaint is not their priority at this time. We are also aware that legal service providers may be affected by both the availability of staff and access to their records. We will work with service providers to be as flexible as possible, and we will let people know if it affects them. Please let us know if you would like us to suspend your file for any reason. We are here to resolve complaints about the service you have received from your regulated legal service provider in England and Wales. We are free, independent and fair. Similarly, the legal mediator cannot make decisions on negligence, as negligence is a legal concept that must be proven in court. However, it is possible that a bad service that the Ombudsman can investigate may overlap with evidence that a complainant may want to use to argue that his or her lawyer acted negligently. In case of overlap, only the courts have jurisdiction to decide what constitutes negligence. The rules of the legal ombudsman allow him to refuse to investigate cases relating to legal advice or negligence if he believes that they should be better dealt with by the courts or another system.  In England and Wales, we have ombudsmen for the financial sector, parliament and healthcare, pensions and public services and the regulated legal sector.
The role of the Legal Ombudsman is limited to investigating service quality issues. Since the Legal Ombudsman is a non-professional organisation (Article 122(2) of the Legal Services Act does not allow a lawyer to be the lead Ombudsman), he or she generally cannot say whether the legal advice is correct or not. The exception is when it turns out that the advice is so unreasonable that no other lawyer would have given it in the same circumstances: this is the reasonable or reasonable approach. The Legal Ombudsman for England and Wales is appointed by the Office of Legal Complaints to manage an independent system that resolves complaints about lawyers fairly and effectively and helps improve legal services. The Legal Ombudsman is a mediation service launched in October 2010.  This is a free service that investigates complaints about lawyers in England and Wales. The Law Commissioner was established under the Legal Services Act 2007 and replaced the Legal Appeals Service and other appeal bodies. The current Chief Ombudsman is Paul McFadden, who replaced Rebecca Marsh in January 2021 after Marsh`s departure in the summer of 2020, having been in the position since April 2019.   The Legal Ombudsman is a member of the Ombudsman Association.  Sections 114 and 115 of the Legal Services Act 2007 established the Office of Legal Complaints and stipulated that it must operate an ombudsman system. The Office of the Legal Counsel appointed the first Chief Ombudsman and acts as the organ of the Legal Ombudsman.
The Office of the Legal Counsel reports to both the Commission des services juridiques and the Department of Justice. The current president of the OLC is Elisabeth Davies.  The name of the Ombudsman comes from Sweden – there are many different ombudsmen around the world. At the Legal Ombudsman, we have been closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation and the government`s advice on how to respond to the outbreak. Unfortunately, as many organizations realize, supporting our employees in this way will disrupt our normal level of service. Calls and emails may not always be answered as quickly as our customers expect, and emails may arrive at unusual times of the day or night. We will do everything we can to keep disruptions as low as possible and to accommodate as many new demands as possible.