Getting legal advice or finding a lawyer
Although the Consumer Panel cannot provide legal advice or find a lawyer for you, several organisations can help find advisers who will specialise in your type of problem:
- Citizens Advice: check the phone book for your nearest Citizens Advice Bureau, or visit www.citizensadvice.org.uk and www.adviceguide.org.uk
- The Law Society’s directory: phone 0870 606 6575 or visit www.solicitors-online.com
- Chartered Institute of Legal Executives at www.ilex.org.uk
- Yellow Pages, also online at www.yell.com
- The Bar Council (for information about barristers): phone 020 7242 0082 or visit www.barcouncil.org.uk
Getting Legal Aid advice
You may be able to get Legal Aid to help with your problem. You can use this website to check. It will help you contact a legal advisor if you are eligible for Legal Aid, or find other sources of advice if you’re not.
Complaining about your lawyer
If you have a complaint about the service you received from your lawyer, you should first make a formal complaint to your lawyer or law firm. Tips on how to complain to your lawyer are available on the Legal Ombudsman’s website.
If you are not satisfied by the way in which your complaint was dealt with by your lawyer of law firm, you should contact the Legal Ombudsman. You can do this by calling 0300 555 0333, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or writing to: PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton, WV1 9WJ.
If you think your lawyer may have not conducted themselves in the correct manner, you should contact the body which regulates them listed below:
- If your complaint is about a Solicitor you will need to contact the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA)
- If your complaint is about a Barrister you will need to contact the Bar Standards Board (BSB)
- If your complaint is about a Notary you will need to contact the Faculty Office.
- If you complaint is about a Legal Executive you will need to contact the Institute for Legal Executives (ILEX).
- If your complaint is about a Licensed Conveyancer you will need to contact the Council for Licensed Conveyancers (CLC).
- If your complaint is about a Patent Attorney you will need to contact the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys (CIPA).
- If your complaint is about a Trade Mark Attorney you will need to contact the Chartered Institute of Trade Mark Attorneys (CITMA).
- If your complaint is about a Costs Draftsman you will need to contact the Association of Law Costs Draftsmen (ALCD).