A mandatory complaints levy will be imposed on a firm by the SLCC if one or more service issues of complaint are upheld at the final stage of Determination.
A complaint will only be referred for Determination if no resolution is reached and the practitioner and/or complainer disagree with the recommendations made by the SLCC’s investigator.
The levy follows the “polluter pays” principle, and represents a small percentage of the resources that SLCC has expended when a complaint has reached this far.
A Determination Committee may take any or all of the following factors into account when deciding on a complaints levy:
- Did the practitioner adhere to their own complaints handling policy?
- Did the practitioner follow the best practice principles in this Guide? This would include accepting and responding to the complaint, enquiring fully into the circumstances giving rise to the complaint, and reporting back in an appropriate way on all issues raised to the complainer.
- Did the practitioner signpost the complainer to the SLCC?
- Did the practitioner delay unreasonably in providing any new points or justification or reasoning to the complainer, until after the complaint had been made to the SLCC?
- Did the practitioner respond and report thoroughly, promptly and fully to the SLCC, at every stage of the process?
- Did the practitioner concede any shortcoming and offer an appropriate and reasonable settlement?
- Have there been other issues upheld against the firm in the previous three years that are an aggravating factor.
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