Office complaints procedure of Bureau LEX
Article 1 Definitions
The following definitions apply in this office complaints procedure:
- complaint: any written expression of dissatisfaction by or on behalf of the client to the lawyer or the persons working under their responsibility about the formation and execution of a letter of engagement, the quality of the services or the amount of the invoice, not being a complaint within the meaning of subsection 4 of the Dutch Counsel Act;
- complainant: the client or their representative who expresses a complaint;
- complaints officer: the lawyer in charge of handling the complaint.
Article 2 Scope of application
- This office complaints procedure applies to any letter of engagement between Bureau LEX and the client.
- Bureau LEX handles complaints in accordance with the office complaints procedure.
Article 3 Objectives
The purpose of this office complaints procedure is:
- to establish a procedure for constructively handling complaints submitted by clients within a reasonable period of time;
- to establish a procedure for determining the reasons for complaints submitted by clients;
- to maintain and improve existing relationships by means of the proper handling of complaints;
- to train employees in adopting a client-focused approach when responding to complaints;
- to improve the quality of services by means of complaints handling and complaints analysis.
Article 4 Information upon the commencement of the services
- This office complaints procedure has been published. Before concluding the letter of engagement, Bureau LEX informs the client that it has an office complaints procedure in place, which applies to the services provided.
- Bureau LEX has included in the general terms and conditions to which independent party or body a complaint that has not been resolved after it has been handled may be submitted to obtain a binding decision, and has communicated this in the letter of engagement.
- Complaints within the meaning of Article 1 of this office complaints procedure that have not been resolved after handling are submitted to the Disputes Committee for the Legal Profession.
Article 5 Internal complaints procedure
- If a client contacts Bureau LEX with a complaint, the complaint is passed on to M.L.J.A. de Vocht, LLM, who acts as complaints officer.
- The complaints officer informs the person whom the complaint concerns about the submission of the complaint and gives the complainant and the person whom the complaint concerns the opportunity to explain the complaint.
- The person whom the complaint concerns will try to reach a solution together with the client, whether or not through the intermediary of the complaints officer.
- The complaints officer handles the complaint within four weeks of receipt of the complaint, or informs the complainant, stating reasons, about any derogation from this period, stating the period within which an opinion will be given on the complaint.
- The complaints officer informs the complainant and the person whom the complaint concerns in writing of the opinion on the merits of the complaint, whether or not accompanied by recommendations.
- If the complaint has been handled satisfactorily, the complainant, the complaints officer, and the person whom the complaint concerns sign the opinion on the merits of the complaint.
Article 6 Confidentiality and complaint handling at no cost
- The complaints officer and the person whom the complaint concerns maintain confidentiality when handling the complaint.
- The complainant does not owe a fee for the costs of handling the complaint.
Article 7 Responsibilities
- The complaints officer is responsible for handling the complaint within the specified time.
- The person whom the complaint concerns keeps the complaints officer informed of any contact and of a possible solution.
- The complaints officer keeps the complainant informed of the handling of the complaint.
- The complaints officer keeps the complaint file up to date.
Article 8 Complaint registration
- The complaints officer registers the complaint, stating the subject of the complaint.
- A complaint may be classified into several subjects.
- The complaints officer presents a periodic report about the handling of complaints and makes recommendations to prevent new complaints as well as to improve procedures.
- The reports and recommendations are discussed at the firm and submitted for decision-making at least once a year.
- If applicable, the complaint is also reported to the relevant liability insurer.