On 12 August 2010, the Secretary of State for Justice and Lord Chancellor made directions (which will take effect on 6 October 2010) instructing the legal services ombudsman to limit her investigations to those arising from service complaints against persons described in section 22(1)(a) and (b) of the Courts and Legal Services Act 1990. The directions were made by virtue of his powers under section 21 of, and paragraph 1(1) of schedule 3 to, the Courts and Legal Services Act 1990 (c.41).
The directions support the transitional arrangements. They ensure a timely cessation of the current system under which the legal services ombudsman operates and establish (as of 6 October 2010) the new Office for Legal Complaints which will administer a fair, transparent and independent legal complaints handling scheme, namely the Legal Ombudsman (LeO). Under the new scheme the LeO will not have jurisdiction to deal with conduct complaints and these will be dealt with by the respective approved regulator.