The following terms used in the present document have the following definitions:
a. The firm: SPEE advocaten B.V., a private limited company, trading under the name of SPEE advocaten & mediation;
b. Client: a party that engages the firm;
c. Complaint: every reasonable oral or written statement of discontent concerning the service provided by the lawyer;
d. Complainant: the client or the representative of the client who makes a complaint;
e. Complaints officer: the person who will deal with the complaint.
a. This complaints regulation is applicable to every engagement agreement between the firm and the client.
b. Every lawyer of SPEE advocaten & mediation will deal with complaints in conformity with this complaints regulation.
3. Aims of the complaints procedure
The aims of the complaints procedure are:
a. Providing a procedure that enables dealing with client complaints within a reasonable period of time;
b. Providing a procedure to determine the causes of client complaints;
c. Maintaining and improving existing client relations by dealing with complaints in a proper manner;
d. Training the firm’s employees in dealing with complaints in a client-focused manner;
e. Improving the quality of the services provided by the firm, by making use of dealing with, and analysing, complaints/
4. Information at the start of the engagement
a. This complaints regulation has been made public. Before entering into an engagement agreement, the lawyer will point out to the client that the firm has a complaints regulation, which is applicable to the services provided by the firm.
b. The firm has pointed out to the client, in the engagement agreement, in the general terms of conditions of the firm, which independent party is competent to decide (in a binding way) with unresolved complaints.
c. Should the complainant disagree with the solution as proposed by SPEE advocaten & mediation, the complainant can submit his complaint within twelve months after the written decision of SPEE advocaten & mediation to the Dispute Committee (Geschillencommissie Advocatuur, P.O. Box 90600, 2509 LP The Hague).
5. Internal complaint procedure
a. If the client submits a complaint to the firm, the complaint will be forwarded to Ms. M.J.E. Spee. She will function as the complaints officer.
b. The complaint has to be submitted by the complainant within three months after the moment during which the client has taken note, or was reasonably able to take note, of the acts or omissions that give rise to the complaint;
c. The complaints officer will inform the lawyer to which the complaint applies. The complainant as well as the lawyer concerned will be given the opportunity to provide an explanation about the complaint.
d. The lawyer concerned will aim to reach a solution together with the client, if necessary with the help of the complaints officer.
e. The complaint will be handled by the complaints officer within four weeks after submission. If it is not possible to handle the complaint within this period of time, the complaints officer will inform the complainant about the reasons for the delay. The complaints will also inform the complainant when the complaint will be handled.
f. The complaints officer will inform the client as well as the lawyer concerned in writing about her opinion regarding the accuracy of the claim. If necessary the complaints officer will also provide recommendations;
g. If the complaint is dealt with in a manner satisfying both the complainant as well as the lawyer concerned, the complainant, the lawyer concerned and the complaints officer will sign the opinion on the accuracy of the complaint.
6. Secrecy and complaints procedure free of charge
a. The complaints officer and the lawyer concerned will guarantee secrecy.
b. Complaint will not be charged any fee regarding the complaints procedure.
a. The complaints officer is responsible for dealing with the complaint in a timely manner.
b. The lawyer concerned will keep the complaints officer informed about the status of the complaint and a possible solution.
c. The complaints officer will keep complainant informed about the processing of the complaint.
d. The complaints officer will manage the complaints file.
8. Registration of the complaints
a. The complaints officer will register the complaint as well as the subject of the complaint.
b. A complaint can be filed under several subjects.
c. The complaints officer will periodically report about the processing of complaints and will provide recommendations in order to avoid new complaints and to improve procedures.
d. At least once a year, the reports and recommendations will be discussed at the firm and presented for decision making.