Rules for Disputes

Rules for Disputes

We will do our utmost best to provide you with the highest possible level of ser-vice. However, it could still happen that you are not fully satisfied with a certain aspect of our services. Hereafter, it is explained what you could do in that event. Our firm has joined the Disputes Committee for the Legal Profession (Geschillencommissie Advocatuur, hereafter: Disputes Committee). This committee has existed since June 1st 1999 and falls under the Foundation for Disputes Committees for Consumer Cases (SGC) and that for Profession and Business (SGB) in The Hague. Under the Regulation for the Disputes Committee for the Legal Profession (Geschillenregeling Advocatuur, hereafter: Regulation), a complaint can quickly be decided upon by an independent third party, should the matter not be re-solved under the internal procedure for complaints. This Regulation provides that any dispute in connection with our services, including a dispute with respect to our invoice, will be settled by arbitration according to the Regulation. For private clients, this may be binding advice. How do these rules work? 1. Should you not be fully satisfied with the quality of our services or with an invoice, it is kindly requested that you first put these objections to the responsible advocaat. You can also contact one of the partners in our firm. Our internal complaint rules will serve as the basis for our handling the complaint. A copy will be provided upon request. 2. Any complaint must be notified to our firm within three months after the moment you learned or reasonably should have learned about the act or omission that caused your complaint. 3. In close consultation with you, we will as soon as possible try to resolve the problem at stake. This solution will be confirmed to you in writing within four weeks after the first notification of the complaint. 4. Should this consultation regrettably not lead to a satisfying result, then a complaint may be submitted with the Disputes Committee. This is only possible after you have first brought your objections before our firm, or if our firm should not have responded to your complaint in writ-ing within four weeks after the notification of your objections. 5. A complaint can be filed with the Disputes Committee within twelve months after you received our written reply to your first complaint. After that, a complaint cannot be filed anymore. 6. The Disputes Committee handles the case according to the Regulation in force at the time when the complaint is submitted to the Disputes Committee. A copy of the most recent Regulation can be requested from: Disputes Committee for the Legal Profession PO Box 90600 2509 LP The Hague The Netherlands 7. Our firm itself can also submit unpaid invoices to the Disputes Committee. 8. For the benefit of business clients the Disputes Committee decides in the form of an arbitral award or, in case the dispute has been submitted by a private client, in the form of a binding advice, unless the client turns to the competent court within one month after the complaint has been handled by our firm. A dispute with respect to the collection of an invoice from our firm will only be settled by binding advice if the client provides the outstanding amount to the Disputes Committee. If not, the procedure will be arbitration. 9. The Disputes Committee is authorised to adjudicate on complaints concerning the quality of the services rendered by an advocaat and the amount of our invoice. Should you feel that you are entitled to damages, the Disputes Committee is also empowered to adjudicate on damages claims to a maximum sum of € 10,000. Higher damages claims can only be submitted to the Disputes Committee if (i) the amount thereof is explicitly limited to a maximum of € 10,000 and (ii) the excess has been waived in writing. 10. Adjudication by the Disputes Committee precludes adjudication by a regular court, excluding the jurisdiction by any other court. No appeal is possible against a decision by the Disputes Committee. …….. Click here to go to the (Dutch) website of the Disputes Committee.