Article 1: definitions
In this complaints mechanism the following definitions apply:
– complaint: any written expression of dissatisfaction by or on behalf of the client with respect to the lawyer or the persons working under his responsibility, concerning the conclusion and performance of a contract for services, the quality of the services or the amount of the bill, not being a complaint as referred to in paragraph 4 of the Dutch Lawyers Act;
– complainant: the client or his representative who makes a complaint;
– complaints officer: the lawyer charged with handling the complaint;
Article 2 scope of application
1. This complaints mechanism is applicable to any agreement for services between YELH and the client.
2. We will ensure that complaints are handled in accordance with this complaints mechanism.
Article 3 Objectives
The objectives of this complaints mechanism are:
a. to establish a procedure for the constructive resolution of client’s complaints within a reasonable period of time;
b. to lay down a procedure for determining the causes of clients’ complaints;
c. maintaining and improving existing relationships through proper complaint handling;
d. improving the quality of services by means of complaint management and complaint analysis.
Article 4 information at the start of the service
1. This complaints mechanism has been made public. Before entering into an engagement letter, we inform the client that we use this complaints mechanism and that this is applicable to the services provided.
2. We have included in the engagement letter with which independent party or authority a complaint that has not been resolved after treatment can be submitted for a binding decision.
3. Complaints as referred to in article 1 of this complaints mechanism that are unresolved after treatment shall be submitted to the court of Midden-Nederland, location Utrecht, the Netherlands.
Article 5 Internal complaint procedure
1. If a client approaches us with a complaint, the complaint will be handled by Lars Braams, who will thereby act as complaints officer.
2. The person complained about shall attempt to reach a solution together with the client, whether or not after intervention by the complaints officer.
4. The complaints officer will deal with the complaint within four weeks of receiving it, or will notify the complainant, giving reasons, if this term is not observed and stating the term within which a decision will be made on the complaint.
5. The complaints officer shall inform the complainant and the person about whom the complaint has been made in writing of the decision on the merits of the complaint, whether or not accompanied by recommendations.
6. If the complaint has been dealt with satisfactorily, the complainant, the complaints officer and the person about whom the complaint was made shall sign an agreed opinion on the merits of the complaint.
Article 6 confidentiality and free complaint handling
1. The complaints officer and the person about whom the complaint has been made shall observe confidentiality during the handling of the complaint.
2. The complainant shall not be liable to pay any compensation for the costs of handling the complaint, but the complainant shall bear its own costs if it instructs a third party to file and handle the complaint.
Article 7 responsibilities
1. The complaints officer is responsible for the timely handling of the complaint.
2. The person about whom the complaint has been made shall keep the complaints officer informed about any contact and a possible solution.
3. The complaints officer shall keep the complainant informed about the handling of the complaint.
4. The complaints officer keeps the complaint file up to date.
Article 8 Registration of complaints
1. The complaints officer registers the complaint and the subject of the complaint.
2. A complaint may be divided into several subjects.
3. The complaints officer shall periodically report on the handling of complaints and make recommendations for the prevention of new complaints, as well as for the improvement of procedures.
4. At least once a year, the reports and recommendations shall be discussed at the office and submitted for decision.
If applicable, the complaint shall also be reported to the relevant liability insurer.