18 September 2012 at 11:10 BST

Naming-and-shaming scheme goes live

Law firms and lawyers across England and Wales have been named in an on-line public list of complaints published by the jurisdiction's Legal Ombudsman.

A client vents a bit of spleen

A client vents a bit of spleen

The complaints relate to some 770 law firms, and include data regarding the area of law, date of the decision, nature of the remedy awarded and the reason for the complaint, reports London’s Law Gazette newspaper.
Chief legal ombudsman Adam Sampson told the Gazette: ‘What we are publishing is factual data, not opinion, and what we are trying to do with this policy is give objective information about the way the market is operating.’

Misleading data

However, the Law Society – the body that represents the jurisdiction’s 125,000 solicitors -- has questioned how effective the data is in its present form. A spokesman said: ‘It is unclear how the publication of this partial and potentially misleading data will be of any real benefit to consumers.’
But according to the ombudsman, the quarterly list will attempt to promote consumer interests and transparency, as well as encourage higher standards within the legal profession.


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