Making a Complaint

In the vast majority of cases, clients of our Members receive excellent service. 

 Occasionally, if Members don’t get it right and if a client is not happy with any aspect of service provision, Members are keen to know about it. Not only does it allow them to rectify the situation, they will then also be able to ensure the same problem doesn't happen again.

 If a client isn't happy, in the first instance, they should write to the firm concerned. They should be able to find the name of the professional and their contact details on the contract/Terms of Business/Letter of Engagement that are provided to all clients. 

 Clients should not contact the Institute or the Estate Planning Arbitration Scheme until they have given the firm or the professional the opportunity to put things right. 

 The Institute’s Code of Practice requires that letters of dissatisfaction should be acknowledged within three working days and will include information about how the issues that have been raised will be dealt with. The firm then has a further 20 days to complete an investigation and respond to those issues. 

 If a client isn't happy with this response, they have three options: 

1. To refer the matter to the Institute by writing to us. 

 The Institute will help the client and the firm to reach a mutually acceptable outcome. 

 2. If the client is not happy with the response from the Institute, or if they elect not to refer the matter to the Institute, they may refer the matter to the Estate Planning Arbitration Scheme (EPAS). This is a completely independent scheme run by the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. They will be required to contribute towards the costs of this process.

3. They may pursue the matter through the courts, irrespective of whether they have followed any or all of the above procedures.

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