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The Investigation Process

Once your conduct complaint has been received it shall be reviewed by the Professional Conduct team to determine whether same can be registered for investigation.

If your complaint is not registered you will be contacted and advised of the reasons why the Law Society cannot assist i.e., if there are live proceedings before the Court or the issues that you raise are not matters for the Law Society to consider.

Where the complaint is registered for investigation, it shall be assigned to a Caseworker, and you will receive the Society’s triage letter confirming that a complaint has been commenced. This will usually result in the conduct complaint form and accompanying documents, you have provided, being shared with the solicitor for their comment.

Upon receipt of the solicitor’s reply, the relevant Caseworker may need to raise further enquiries with you prior to progressing the matter to the Professional Conduct Committee (“the Committee”) for determination.  There may, however, be instances where the matter does not need to be referred to the Committee for consideration i.e., the complaint has been resolved or subsequently withdrawn.

A Caseworker will, where appropriate, keep you updated of the progress of the complaint.

Depending on the nature of the complaint the Law Society may have to take specific regulatory action which they are unable to disclose to you in the first instance.

Where the Committee consider the complaint both you and the relevant solicitor will be provided with a letter advising of the determination of the Committee. There may, however, be times where the Law Society can provide only limited information regarding the regulatory and/or any other action that is being taken.

The Committee may:

(1) make further enquiries

(2) uphold the complaint

(3) not uphold the complaint

(4) issue a warning letter to the solicitor or

(5) make a referral to the independent Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal, the PSNI or other statutory Agencies.

The Committee are unable to review their decision in the absence of any change in circumstance or where there is no new and material evidence relevant to the complaint.

While the Law Society aims to conclude complaint investigations within 26 weeks there may be instances where this timeline cannot be adhered to.

Please click here to make a Conduct Complaint


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