Accessibility Policy – clients

Important note – this policy has been written in preparation for KJM Legal seeking authorisation from the Solicitors Regulation Authority to be a Recognised Body. We are not yet a Recognised Body and though we will generally act in accordance with this policy document, it cannot be fully in force until we become one. When we are, we will update this policy document to remove this additional wording.

We are committed to practising what we preach and will take all reasonable steps to make our services accessible to people who might want to instruct us.

We can supply documents we produce electronically (so that you can use your own software to read them). We can also supply documents by post in a variety of formats. We produce all printed documents in “Clear Print” ie. At least size 12 Arial font. We can easily produce documents for you in Large Print or Giant Print or using alternative fonts. We can provide hard copies on different coloured paper ie. Off white. If you would like documents in Braille or Easy Read please let us know.

We can tailor our communications in most instances to suit your preferences; some people prefer telephone calls, other people prefer emails and we will try to work with these preferences. In some cases, the information we need to convey to you will be sufficiently complex that we will need to communicate it both in writing and in another way eg. telephone, face to face. Most requests can be made by telephone as well as in writing. Complaints can be made by telephone if you would prefer.

Where documents are sent to us by others, it may be more difficult to send you an accessible version. We will discuss with you how you want us to deal with documents sent to us that are inaccessible.

If you are unable to use a telephone to make voice calls, we are happy to accept calls via the Next Generation Text Service or other third party sign language interpreters. Alternatively, we are happy to arrange to speak via Instant Messaging software, if you would prefer to have a real time conversation in text.

If you don’t speak English well enough to communicate with us, we will arrange for an interpreter, whether you need a BSL interpreter or an interpreter into another spoken language.

If we need to meet in person, this can be arranged at meeting rooms that provide level access, good acoustics and suitable lighting. If we need to meet with a barrister, we can ensure that the barrister’s chambers arranges for us to meet in a meeting room accessible to you. If you need a lipspeaker or palantypist or similar assistance with communication, we will make arrangements for one to be available, taking into account any preferences you have over who acts in these roles. If you would prefer to bring your own communication support person with you, we will make sure the meeting is booked into a large enough room. We are also willing to travel to your home to meet you there, where this is necessary as a reasonable adjustment to our services ie. Because you are dependent on medical equipment that cannot easily be moved or because travel would make you too fatigued to attend to our conversation.

Where you have communication or other difficulties that mean it will take us longer to talk through an issue, we will allow time for that (whether in person or by telephone). We can also arrange to take breaks during meetings or telephone calls where you need to stop concentrating on the conversation for a short period. It is in any event our policy to take short /micro breaks in meetings that last for more than 30 minutes, because this assists everybody to concentrate well.

We will consider requests to make recordings of our telephone or in person conversations sympathetically where they are made by a disabled person seeking to do so because they are less able to retain a meeting in their minds and/or less able to take notes during the meeting.

We can discuss with a third party eg. A carer, what adjustments you need to access our services, if you would like us to do so.

We are willing to consider communicating with clients via a third party, where there is somebody who you would want to act in this role. This is on a case by case basis, as it is important that we are sure you are not being abused or manipulated by anybody into giving us instructions that don’t match your true views. If you use a professional or charity based advocacy service to help you communicate your views to others, we are happy to work with them, because we know that organisations that offer that service are accountable. We can help you identify such a service if you don’t currently have an advocate and think it would be helpful.

We can liaise with Courts and Tribunals regarding any access arrangements that need to be made for you to attend hearings. This will include making any application for adjustments to assist you with giving evidence where needed.

You will not be charged extra for any adjustments we make to our services to enable you to access them.