The Scottish Legal Complaints Commission (SLCC), the independent body for complaints about solicitors, advocates and commercial attorneys has published its Annual Report for its 2016-17 year.
The report covers complaint statistics and the work and projects delivered by the SLCC; it also sets out future challenges and opportunities for the organisation. This year the current Chair, Bill Brackenridge, comments on coming to the end of his statutory term after five years as well as this year’s performance: “the SLCC has sought to drive efficiency within the current statutory process whilst making bold calls for reform. This year we were pleased to see the Scottish Government announce an Independent Review of the Regulation of Legal Services, and we will continue to contribute to work to improve the regulatory and complaints system for consumers and lawyers”
“This year complaints against lawyers continued to rise, a further 2% on top of 12% last year. We recognise that complaints form a tiny proportion of overall transactions in which lawyers support clients, but increasing case load continues to be a key factor in performance and costs. This year we have also seen a continuing trend towards more complaints entering the later stages of our process. To tackle this we’ve worked to support consumers and the sector with guides to reduce the common causes of complaints.”
SLCC Chief Executive Neil Stevenson added “this has been a challenging year, with significant litigation that has driven delays and costs and which was outwith our control. We are delighted the court upheld our position, and hope we can now move beyond some of these challenges to work with others in the sector to improve confidence in regulation.
On a personal level one of the organisational achievements we all contributed to, and which I am most proud of, is a significant improvement on our staff engagement survey results. I’m also delighted that we are in the rare position of gender pay parity.”