2011 - Law Society Review

In November 2011 the SLCC concluded a review of the Law Society of Scotland's Conduct Complaint Process under its powers set out in section 36(5) of the Legal Profession and Legal Aid (Scotland) Act 2007.  The review concluded that the SLCC Board could take 'reasonable assurance' in the Law Society's overall complaints handling system but recognised that the processes, procedures and controls under review could benefit from a number of improvements.

In particular, the SLCC has recommended that:

  • Policies and procedures, including the Complaints Investigation procedures manual, should be finalised
  • Defined timescales and Key Performance Indicators should be established
  • An effective version control system should be implemented for key documents
  • The quality assurance process should be formalised and reviews documented
  • Management information on complaints could be refined, including the use of trend analysis

These findings have been discussed with the Law Society of Scotland which has accepted the overall finding of 'reasonable assurance' and the recommendations in relation to complaints handling.  These will be monitored by the SLCC in terms of its on-going oversight role and some will form the subject of future reviews.

The SLCC's current review is of how Guarantee Fund Claims are processed, following the report of the research carried out by the University of Manchester.  It is anticipated we will report on this in May 2012.