Client Complaint Procedure

Legal Aid at Work (LAAW) welcomes client comments and takes complaints seriously. If you feel you have been treated unfairly as a client, you are entitled to protest the policies or actions that you believe have affected you unjustly.

You can make an oral complaint by calling (415) 864-8848. You may also send a written complaint to: President, Legal Aid at Work, 180 Montgomery Street, Suite 600, San Francisco, CA, 94104.

Complainants’ rights

If you file a complaint, you have the following rights:

  • To discuss the complaint with those who will be making the decision regarding the complaint.
  • Not to be denied service or otherwise retaliated against because you filed the complaint.
  • To have your identity kept confidential to the extent possible while allowing for an investigation.
  • To take other avenues or redress provided by law even though you have used this complaint procedure.
  • To be provided with copies of LAAW information that you request related to the complaint that is not confidential and/or legally protected from disclosure. Depending on the number of pages requested, you may be required to pay a copying charge for this service.
  • To choose to have an advocate present for any meetings with the LAAW. This other person, who might be a friend, other client, family member, or formal advocate, must be provided at your own expense to the extent they are a paid advocate. Staff members of LAAW may not act as your advocate in any way.

How to file a complaint

  1. If you have a complaint, you may contact the President to register your complaint either orally or by sending the complaint in writing. (If your complaint is made orally, you may request at that time that the President summarize your concerns in writing and provide a copy of that summary to you.) Complaint subjects may include, but are not limited to, communication issues, such as a staff member’s failure to return your calls or an attorney’s failure to definitively accept or complete a task for you.
  1. The President will facilitate a mutually acceptable resolution if possible. Resolution efforts may include acting as a liaison between you and person you complained about. The President shall act as a neutral party when conducting these discussions.
  1. If your complaint is not resolved to your satisfaction at this level within 30 days, or if your complaint concerns the President, you may request a review of your complaint with the Chair of the Board of Legal Aid at Work.
  1. Within 60 days of receiving the complaint, Legal Aid at Work’s Chief President will complete his/her investigation and notify you in writing that he/she will either:

– Take appropriate action regarding the matter complained about, or

– Close the matter with no action.

The State Bar of California (1-800-843-9053) will also take complaints concerning attorneys licensed in California.