Article 1 definitions
The following terms in this office complaints procedure shall mean:
each written expression of dissatisfaction of or on behalf of the client against the attorney-at-law or the persons working under his/her responsibility on the establishment and the execution of an assignment agreement, the quality of the services provided or the amount of the invoice, which is not a complaint as referred to in paragraph 4 of the Counsel Act (Advocatenwet);
the client or his representative who gives notification of a complaint;
the attorney-at-law who is charged with the handling of the complaint, which is mr W.G.B. van the Ven.
Article 2 applicable scope
1. This office complaints procedure is applicable to each assignment agreement between VDVS and the client.
2. Mr. W.G.B. van the Ven ensures that complaints are handled in conformity with the office complaints procedure.
Article 3 objectives
The objective of this office complaints procedure is:
a. to record a procedure which serves to settle complaints of clients within a reasonable period in a constructive manner;
b. to record a procedure which serves to determine the causes of complaints of clients;
c. retaining and improvement of existing relationships by means of proper handling of complaints;
d. to train employees to react to complaints in a client-friendly manner;
e. to improve the quality of the services with the aid of handling of complaints and complaint analysis.
Article 4 information at commencement of services
1. This office complaints procedure has been made public. The attorney-at-law informs the client before entering into the assignment agreement that the office has an office complaints procedure in place and that that is applicable to the services provided.
2. VDVS has included, by way of the general terms and conditions, the name of the independent party or authority before which a complaint which has been dealt with but which has not been resolved can be put in order to obtain a binding decision and makes this known at confirmation of the assignment.
3. Complaints as referred to in article 1 of this office complaints procedure the handling of which has not led to a solution shall be submitted to the court which has jurisdiction in the matter.
Article 5 internal complaints procedure
1. If a client approaches the office with a complaint, the complaint is passed on to W.G.B. van the Ven, who acts in the capacity of complaints officer.
2. The complaints officer shall endeavour to reach a solution together with the client.
3. The complaints officer shall settle the complaint within four weeks after receipt of the complaint or, shall give notification stating reasons to the complainant about deviation from this period, specifying the period within which an opinion will be given on the complaint.
4. The complaints officer shall inform the complainant in writing of the opinion on the validity of the claim, whether or not accompanied with recommendations.
5. If the complaint is settled satisfactorily, the complainant and the complaints officer shall sign the opinion on the validity of the claim.
Article 6 duty of confidentiality and handling of complaint free of charge
1. The complaints officer shall observe the duty of confidentiality in the handling of complaints procedure.
2. The complainant is due no remuneration of the costs for the handling of the complaint.
Article 7 responsibilities
1. The complaints officer is responsible for the timely settlement of the complaint.
2. The complaints officer shall keep the complainant informed about the handling of the complaint.
3. The complaints officer shall keep the complaint file up to date.
Article 8 complaint registration
1. The complaints officer shall register the complaint and the subject of the complaint.
2. A complaint can be subdivided into a number of subjects.
3. The complaints officer shall issue periodic reports on the settlement of the complaints and provide recommendations for the purpose of prevention of new complaints, as well as for improvement of procedures.
4. Once per year, at minimum, the reports and the recommendations are discussed at the office and presented for decision-making.