In the legal landscape of the United Kingdom, the Legal Ombudsman plays a crucial role in ensuring fair and impartial resolution of disputes between clients and their legal service providers. Regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), the Legal Ombudsman offers a mechanism for clients to address grievances and seek redress when they believe they have received inadequate service from a solicitor or a law firm.

What is the Legal Ombudsman?

The Legal Ombudsman is an independent body established under the Legal Services Act 2007. It serves as the first point of contact for clients who wish to complain about the service they have received from a solicitor or a legal firm in England and Wales. The role of the Legal Ombudsman is to investigate complaints impartially and to facilitate a resolution that is fair to both parties.

Role of the SRA in Relation to the Legal Ombudsman

The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) oversees the regulation of solicitors and law firms in England and Wales. It sets out the standards and principles that solicitors must adhere to, including requirements related to client care and handling of complaints. The SRA works in conjunction with the Legal Ombudsman to ensure that solicitors maintain high standards of service and conduct. If a complaint made to the Legal Ombudsman raises issues related to the conduct or behavior of a solicitor, the SRA may also become involved in investigating and taking regulatory action where necessary.

How to Make a Complaint to the Legal Ombudsman

Clients who are dissatisfied with the service provided by their solicitor can make a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman if they have already tried to resolve the issue directly with the solicitor or law firm without success. The complaint must generally be made within six years of the problem occurring, or within three years from when the complainant became aware of the problem, whichever is later. The Legal Ombudsman provides guidance and assistance throughout the complaint process, ensuring that complaints are handled fairly and efficiently.

Resolution Process

Once a complaint is received, the Legal Ombudsman will assess whether it falls within its jurisdiction and whether it is appropriate for them to investigate. They may attempt to resolve the complaint through negotiation, mediation, or adjudication. The aim is to achieve a fair outcome that addresses the concerns of both the client and the solicitor or law firm involved.

Importance of the Legal Ombudsman

The Legal Ombudsman serves an important role in upholding the integrity of the legal profession in the UK. By providing an independent and impartial avenue for clients to seek redress, it promotes transparency, accountability, and trust in legal services. It also encourages solicitors and law firms to maintain high standards of professionalism and client care, thereby enhancing overall confidence in the legal system.

Contact Details for the Legal Ombudsman


In conclusion, the Legal Ombudsman, overseen by the SRA, plays a vital role in ensuring that clients receive fair treatment and satisfactory resolution of complaints regarding legal services. Its independence and impartiality are fundamental to its effectiveness in upholding standards within the legal profession and promoting trust between solicitors and their clients. Understanding the functions and processes of the Legal Ombudsman is essential for both clients seeking recourse and legal professionals striving to maintain best practices and ethical conduct.

For more detailed information and specific case studies, you can visit the official websites of the Legal Ombudsman and the Solicitors Regulation Authority, where comprehensive guidelines and resources are available to assist both clients and legal practitioners.

Looking for an Expert Solicitor?

Contact Us