Most concerns about the services provided by a Council of Licensed Conveyancers (CLC) practice can be resolved quickly by raising them promptly direct with the practice.
Those regulated by the CLC are required to comply with the CLC's Regulatory Arrangements which set out the professional standards expected of all practices and individuals.
The CLC work with those practices and individuals to mitigate any risk they may pose o the public by helping them comply with these Regulatory Arrangements.
Complaints are separated into three types, as follows:
Referred to the Practice
A Service Complaint is about the poor service a client has received from a Licensed Conveyancer or Probate Practitioner. The CLC does not investigate or determine these complaints and the complaint can usually only be made by the client. Therefore the client should always refer to the Licensed Conveyancer or Probate Practitioner first in order to try and resolve the issue.
Examples of poor service include:
- failure to advise;
- not responding to emails, letters or calls;
- giving a client unclear advice;
- charging a client an amount they are not happy with;
- failure to keep a client's personal or legal documents safe;
- not doing the work in the timescale it should have been done.
If you are still not satisfied with the service you received after your complaint has been investigated by the practice, you can refer your complaint to the Legal Ombudsman. Further information can be found here:
If you are not sure whether your complaint is for the Legal Ombudsam, you may find the following link useful:
If the Legal Ombudsman thinks your complaint invlolves a breach of the CLC codes, they will refer it to the council.
The Legal Ombudsman advises that referrals need to be made within six months of the practice's final response.
Referred to the Practice
Practices generally treat complaints as Negligent Complaints where the compensation payable, if the complaint is agreed, is likely to be substantial and/or there is a dispute whether the practice made a mistake. All CLC practices have Professional Indemnity Insurance (PII) to provide cover in these situations.
If a practice does not respond promptly to any concerns you have set out in writing to them, please email the CLC on:
The CLC can only investigate complaints about the professional conduct of a CLC regulated person or practice. You may raise a complaint about the conduct of the CLC regulated person or practice if their actions may have breached the CLC's Code of Conduct or other Regulatory Arrangements.
So, what is a Conduct Complaint? A copy of the CLC's Codes can be found here:
NB: The CLC do not have the power to award compensation for poor service or to reduce or refund your legal fees.
A Conduct Complaint will generally include the breach of one or more of the following overriding principles (set out in the CLC's Code of Conduct):
- acti with independence and integrity;
- maintain high standards of work;
- act in the best interests of clients;
- deal with regulators and ombudsman in an open and co-operative way;
- promote equality of access and service.
A Conduct Complaint will often include mismanagement of client money.
To make a Conduct Complaint, complete the Complaints Form found here:
You will be asked to provide documentary evidence in support of your complaint. Such documentation should support the grounds of the complaint and must be relevant to your complaint.
CLC Compensation Fund
lf a a valid claim is made against a person or practice for a loss arising out of work for which they are legally responsible, and the CLC are unable to meet the liability in full, there may be an entitlement to claim from the Compensation Fund administered by the CLC.