Guidance to help newly qualified solicitors improve complaint handling has been launched by the Scottish Legal Complaints Commission.
Developed with the help of the Scottish Young Lawyers Association, and based on the results of a questionnaire issued to SYLA members earlier this year, the guide aims to provide practical tips to make newly qualified solicitors better equipped to deal with a complaint, should one be made.
In addition, the SLCC has created a parallel guide for client relations managers whose role it is to deliver training about complaints handling and avoiding common causes of complaints.
Laura Meldrum, SYLA President, commented: “We are hopeful these guides will assist young lawyers faced with complaints and encourage them to deal with them in the correct way at the earliest possible opportunity. In particular, the SYLA welcomes that the guides refer young lawyers to LawCare, given the negative impact complaints may have on the wellbeing of young lawyers.”
David Buchanan-Cook, the SLCC’s head of oversight and communications, who launched the guides at a SYLA CPD event yesterday evening, added, “These guidance notes build on our ongoing programme of work with the profession to improve complaints handling. In particular, on this occasion we decided to focus our outreach on one particular area of the profession – newly qualified solicitors. While we do not see a significant number of complaints about this group, we think there’s real benefit to them having clarity over their responsibilities as well as giving them practical tips on how to recognise complaints and how to deal with them if, or more likely when, they arise. We are particularly grateful to the SYLA for their assistance in this project.”