The Law Society Consumers Complaints Services that acts for the Protection of Lawyers
Zahida Manzoor the Law Society's Defence Attorney

28 February 2005

Your ref: 30451
Zahida Manzoor CBE
Legal Services Ombudsman
3rd Floor
Sunlight House
Quay Street
Manchester M3 3JZ


Dear Ms Manzoor

Re; Your letter of the 18 January 2005
In your above mentioned letter you state in reference to my earlier complaint against Thos Boyd Whyte "…I do not intend to revisit these particular complaints…" Considering comments in recent correspondence I have received from the Information Commissioner's office I can understand why you would not want to "revisit these particular complaints" also why you "didn't investigate your complaints properly or didn't investigate them at all" (quote from your 'little blue rule book'). However that does not stop me commenting on the Information Commissioner's remarks.

First let me refresh your memory about my earlier complaint, the Senior Partner and the Senior Litigation Solicitor at Thos Boyd Whyte, my solicitors at the time, failed to turn up for a pre-arranged meeting to hear my grievances but sent an ex-employee who some of my complaints were against, at my second request he refused to see me. After I contacted the OSS by 'phone who advised I should again request to see the Senior Partner responsible for my case and explain to my Solicitor that the OSS said he must comply with the Client Care Agreement and see me, he again refused. You will recall the OSS refused to investigate this part of my complaint as you did, although during the same period you did treat a woman with the same problem more favourably than you did me.

WhenI 'phoned the OSS on the second occasion for assistance they advised me I should send them an official complaint which I did on 13 May 1999, then over 2 years down the road my file would be allotted to a Caseworker for investigation. However according to the Information Commissioner the OSS by advising me to send a complaint to them had brought about an 'inherent conflict of interests' and the IC believes the reason(s) for a complaint(s) is irrelevant at which point my Solicitor only had to inform the Ethics Committee that a complaint had been made against them and they will be advised that an 'inherent conflict of interests' exists giving reasons to sack the client.

When I telephoned the OSS for help they did not give me any assistance but they must have known that the advice I was given would bring about a 'conflict of interests' and they should have informed me of the situation I would find myself in if I followed their advice, which I did. This advice from the OSS led to me being sacked by Thos Boyd Whyte weeks before the trial which was not sufficient time for me to find a new solicitor and prepare my case properly.

Bearing in mind the CCS say they "help you if you have a problem with your solicitor" please tell me, how did asking for help then taking OSS/CCS advice that led to my sacking by Thos Boyd Whyte "help" me with the "problem" of Gordon Luckhurst's refusal to comply with the Client Care Agreement???

If you look at a letter I sent Samantha Hicks at the OSS dated 10 August 2001 it will be seen my complaint clearly mentions Gordon Luckhurst's refusal to see me and I have continued complaining which the OSS and yourself refused to investigate. I believe the reasons the OSS and you refuse to see this was investigated was the fact Gordon Luckhurst the Senior Partner was, by the Law Society's rules, guilty of Professional Misconduct also the OSS and yourself was aware I had been ill-advised by the OSS and they should have given me assistance when the Senior Partner refused to see me instead of setting me on a course to bring about a 'conflict of interest' and an excuse for Thos Boyd Whyte to sack me with total disregards to the Client Care Agreement which in its self was a breach of contract and possibly why I was not offered the opportunity of the advice of an independent solicitor at the time. Let me repeat what I quoted in my letter to you dated 28th January last;
Complaints about negligence
Complaints of this sort should also go in the first instance to the Office for the Supervision of Solicitors. The OSS will review the complaint and if appropriate will refer the matter to one of the solicitors on their Negligence Panel. These are independent solicitors who have volunteered to give one hour's free advice on whether a solicitor was negligent and, if so, what to do next. Ultimately it may be necessary for you to take action in the courts to obtain compensation for the negligence of a solicitor. Enquiries should be directed to:

At this point let me refer you to your 'little blue rule book'. First, "Of course, you can contact the Ombudsman's Office at any time if you have any more information". Second, "'Special reasons' are circumstances outside your control…" this one you used in favour of TBW but the only rules that are complied with are those that are advantageous to members of the Law Society as you know.

Yours sincerely

B R Gray

cc Dr Howard Stoate MP for the Dartford Constituency for referral to the Parliamentary Ombudsman. The letter I have written to Dr Stoate MP can be accessed at www.solicitorsfromhell.com/Dr_Stoate MP2.htm

See 'Legal Eagles' http://www.solicitorsfromhell.com/Legal-Eagles.htm

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