Complaints Office

Complaints Office

Company Complaints Regulations for C-law B.V.

C-law aims to provide high-quality services. In the unlikely event of dissatisfaction with the work performed by a lawyer or employee on behalf of C-law or with a C-law invoice that you have received, please notify us of your complaint. In accordance with the procedure set out in the following Company Complaints Regulations for the Legal Profession, we will deal with your complaint and will endeavour to resolve it within a reasonable period.

Section 1 Definitions
In these Company Complaint Regulations, the following terms will be understood to have the meanings assigned to them below:

Lawyer/Employee
A Lawyer [advocaat] associated with C-law or a person who works under the responsibility of the Lawyer concerned;

Client/Representative
A Client or a Client’s Representative who makes a Complaint;

C-law
C-law B.V. is the first full-service niche law firm in the south of the Netherlands that focuses on competition and regulation.

Company Complaints Regulations
The present set of Regulations in which the procedure is laid down for dealing with Complaints from Clients of C-law, as referred to in the (Dutch) Legal Profession Regulations [Verordening op de advocatuur];

Complaint
Any written expression of dissatisfaction by or on behalf of a Client against a Lawyer or persons working under the responsibility of a Lawyer regarding the creation or performance of an agreement for professional services, the quality of the service provided, or the amount of an invoice, other than a Complaint as referred to in Section 4 of the (Dutch) Act on Advocates [Advocatenwet];

Complaints Officer
The person designated by C-law to deal with the Complaint.

Section 2 Scope
1. These Company Complaints Regulations apply to all agreements for professional services between C-law and the Client.
2. Every C-law Lawyer must ensure the handling of Complaints in accordance with the Company Complaints Regulations.
3. These Company Complaints Regulations provide a framework for dealing with Complaints. For reasons of efficiency and speed the Client should first discuss any Complaint with the employee or Lawyer concerned. If no appropriate resolution can be reached by mutual agreement, the Client may submit a formal Complaint.

Section 3 Purpose
The purpose of these Company Complaints Regulations is:
a. to lay down a procedure for dealing with Complaints from Clients within a reasonable period of time and in a constructive manner;
b. to lay down a procedure for determining the causes of Complaints from Clients;
c. to maintain and improve existing relationships through the proper handling of Complaints;
d. to train employees to respond to Complaints in a Client-focussed manner;
e. to improve the quality of service provision with the aid of Complaints handling and Complaints analysis.

Section 4 Information at Commencement of Service Provision
1. These Company Complaints Regulations have been made public. Before an agreement for professional services is concluded, the Lawyer concerned will notify the Client that the firm has a set of Company Complaints Regulations and that those Regulations apply to the service provided.
2. C-law has stated in its General Terms and Conditions to which independent party or body an unresolved Complaint can be submitted in order to obtain a binding ruling, and has made that clear in the assignment confirmation.
3. Complaints referred to in Section 1 of these Company Complaints Regulations which remain unresolved after being dealt with will be submitted for a ruling to the competent court in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands.

Section 5 Submission of a Complaint
1. The Client will be required to submit the Complaint within three months after the point when the Client became aware, or could reasonably have become aware, of the act or omission on the part of the Lawyer which has given rise to the Complaint. If a Complaint is submitted after the expiry of that three-month period, the Complaints Officer may decide not to deal with the Complaint. In such case, the Complaints Officer will notify the Client, in writing, as soon as possible after receipt of the Complaint as to whether or not the Complaint will be dealt with.
2. The Client must submit the Complaint to C-law in writing, for the attention of the Complaints Officer. The Client must provide at least the following information:
(i) the name and address details of the Client;
(ii) the name of the Lawyer against whom the Complaint is directed;
(iii) an account of the act or omission on the part of the Lawyer or the invoice which has given rise to the Complaint;
(iv) the file number to which the Complaint relates;
(v) a statement that the Complaint should be dealt with according to the Company Complaints Regulations; and
(vi) the date of submission of the Complaint and signature.
3. If the Complaint does not comply with the requirements specified in Section 5.2, the Complaints Officer will notify the Client to that effect after receipt of the Complaint. In such case, the Client will be given the opportunity to provide the missing information within seven days, failing which the Complaints Officer will not deal with the Complaint. In such case, the Complaints Officer will notify the Client, in writing, that the Complaint will not be dealt with.

Section 6 Acknowledgement of Receipt of Complaint
After receiving a complete Complaint, the Complaints Officer will send the Client confirmation of receipt. The Client will also be provided with the contact details for the Complaints Officer and information about the further course of the procedure in accordance with the Company Complaints Regulations.

Section 7 Internal Complaints Procedure
1. If a Client approaches the firm with a Complaint, the Complaint will be forwarded to the Complaints Officer.
2. The Complaints Officer will notify the person against whom the Complaint is directed that a Complaint has been submitted and will give the complainant and the person complained against the opportunity to explain the Complaint.
3. The person complained against will endeavour, together with the Client, to arrive at a resolution, with or without the intervention of the Complaints Officer.
4. The Complaints Officer will attempt to ensure that the Complaint is resolved to the satisfaction of the Client within four weeks of receipt of a complete Complaint. If it is not possible to deal with the Complaint within four weeks, the parties concerned will be informed, in writing, of the reason for the delay and of the period within which an opinion on the validity of the Complaint will be provided.
5. The Complaints Officer will notify the person against whom the Complaint is directed, in writing, of the opinion on the validity of the Complaint; such notification may be accompanied by recommendations.
6. If the Complaint has been resolved satisfactorily, the complainant, the Complaints Officer, and the person complained against will sign the opinion on the validity of the Complaint.

Section 8 Handling of the Complaint
1. The Complaints Officer will notify the Lawyer against whom the Complaint is directed of the Complaint, in writing and as soon as possible, and will give the Lawyer the opportunity to respond to the Complaint in writing.
2. The Complaints Officer will obtain the information required for the proper and impartial handling and assessment of the Complaint. The Complaints Officer will give the Client and the Lawyer the opportunity to provide an explanation (in greater detail) and may request additional information.
3. If the Complaints Officer considers it necessary or if one party or both parties so wish, the parties will be invited to discuss the matter jointly, at a place, date, and time determined by the Complaints Officer.
4. The Complaints Officer may request both parties to make a proposal for resolving the Complaint. Based on all the information acquired, the Complaints Officer will submit a proposal for resolution of the Complaint to both parties.
5. Both parties will be required to respond to the proposal for resolution of the Complaint, in writing, failing which the party that does not respond will be deemed to agree to the Complaints Officer’s proposal for resolution of the Complaint.

Section 9 Confidentiality and Handling of Complaints Free of Charge
1. The Complaints Officer and the person complained against will observe confidentiality regarding handling of the Complaint.
2. The complainant will not be required to pay the cost of dealing with the Complaint. Each party will bear its own costs.

Section 10 Responsibilities
1. The Complaints Officer will be responsible for the timely handling of the Complaint.
2. The person complained about will keep the Complaints Officer informed about any contact and any possible resolution.
3. The Complaints Officer will keep the complainant informed about the handling of the Complaint.
4. The Complaints Officer will keep a file on the Complaint.

Section 11 Recording of Complaints
1. The Complaints Officer will record the Complaint and the subject it concerns.
2. A Complaint can be categorised under a number of different subjects.

Complaints may be submitted by email (info@c-law.nl) for the attention of the Complaints Officer. Any questions regarding the Company Complaints Regulations for the Legal Profession should be directed to info@c-law.nl

Address details (if by post):

Onderwijsboulevard 225
NL- 5223 DE ‘s-Hertogenbosch
The Netherlands
attn. Company Complaints Regulations for C-law