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Fit for purpose?

Chris Kilroy considers the role and jurisdiction of the Legal Ombudsman

4 December 2014

The eye-watering estimate of £21,459,750 for dealing with a recent Freedom of Information request could be the starting pistol for a long overdue debate on whether the Legal Ombudsman (LeO) is 'fit for purpose'.

The request, which LeO refused to comply with, asked for the number of complaints accepted for investigation by LeO where the alleged act or omission occurred after the end of the retainer.

LeO estimates that it will take 858,319 hours to answer the request. It would therefore take a single member of staff about 510 years to compile the response.

Most of us take for granted the ease with which we can obtain information from our computer systems with just a few key strokes. Not so it seems for the staff of LeO, whose computer system seems to be anything but 'fit for purpose'.

The request is about the jurisdiction of LeO. Most of us probably think that the acts or omissions that can be investigated by LeO must occur during the retainer. N...

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