As a non lawyer, can I ask....
Transdimension… 23 Mar 23 18:27
Reply |

...I have been buying a property of late, and the service received by the conveyancing solicitor (not my choice) has been appalling (borderline rude in communications, has sent through contracts this morning with incorrect deposit amounts and now gone on leave for 4 days without checking the figures with me earlier, despite demanding the deposit be paid by COB).

Is it best to complain via their internal channels or elsewhere??

Don't bother. Assume you are spending hundred of thousand of pounds but cheapest bucket shop you could find?


No, as stated previously it wasn't my choice. Too much to expect basic competence and courtesy, even at a low level shop though?

unless intending to change solicitors now (not ideal but I might be tempted to) then I would keep my powder dry until after completion before going medieval on the ass of managing partner at his/her firm and demanding a 50% discount (i.e.£200 off?). don’t agree to deduction of bill at completion (you might have already done so). in the meantime all you can do is watch like a hawk and chivvy them along. most resi conveyancing is sausage factory stuff now - problems are not picked up or dealt with - mostly the customers’ fault because they will not pay sufficient for the job to be done properly 

Via a Housing Association who are building them. I went with their recommendation for ease. Tell a lie, there may have been a choice of 2, but still.

‘Too much to expect basic competence and courtesy, even at a low level shop though?‘

Pretty much, you’ve probably got a put upon paralegal on £20k p/a dealing with 150 people (and 150 sols on the other side, and 150 estate agents ringing every 5 mins) all of whom think that because they are paying £450 plus VAT they should be treated like the Sultan of Brunei

The cost of cheap conveyancing is some 20 something drowning in student debt being a bit rude to you. If you want somebody to do the job and be nice to you then you are looking at £4k +

Any large brand agent or a developer will have a referral deal so their recommendation is based on cash changing hands.

Very much what FF said, if it's cheap then it's because it's poorly paid staff with huge case numbers or its not viable. 

It's a bit crazy people agree to this. If someone said they could service your car for a tenner you'd probably wonder how.

To actually answer the question, the first complain is made to your conveyancer.

If that doesn't result in a satisfactory resolution the next complaint is to the firm - ask for the name of the complaints partner.

If that doesn't result in a satisfactory resolution the next complaint is to the Legal Ombudsman. (At which point you might as well plant some seeds so that you have some fruit to eat while you're reading the Ombudsman's decision.)

Thanks benj, I was wondering if someone might get round to that! Calmed down slightly after yesterday and someone on their side getting back to me.

don’t bother with ombudsman. post completion email the managing partner and complaints partner detailing how crap they have been and generously offer to pay 50% of the bill (smaller percentages are available). Forward it to minions who dealt with your matter explaining possibly not your fault but you should be aware…. weave in to a telephone conversation that you are holding off reviewing the firm on Trustpilot (or whatever bollocks they use) until 1. you see how complaint addressed 2. post completion e.g. SDLT and registration at HMLR - are dealt with satisfactorily. As a ps you could ask for ombudsman contact detain case you need them (but don’t bother in fact)