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Weightmans offers support to universities as student complaints reach record high

National law firm Weightmans LLP has created a bespoke complaints package to support universities facing widespread grievances  in anticipation of a…

National law firm Weightmans LLP has created a bespoke complaints package to support universities facing widespread grievances  in anticipation of a flurry of new complaints .

The firm’s RESOLVE product aims to support universities following an academic year of disruption to studies for students across the UK, culminating in the Coronavirus pandemic which temporarily closed many educational establishments around the world.

Complaints to the Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA) reached a record high this year – an increase of 21% on 2018, with dissatisfied students receiving more than £740,000 in refunds and compensation.

Last year, almost one third of the complaints related to “service issues”, including the quality of teaching, supervision and facilities – the highest proportion recorded by the OIA. Weightmans anticipates this will increase even further in the year to come, due to the mass closures of premises due to lockdown measures across the UK and beyond. The firm’s package of support has been designed by the firm’s expert higher education lawyers using the latest legal technology to deliver support to the sector in anticipating and managing complaints before they result in formal proceedings. 

Partner and Head of Education at Weightmans Martin Vincent said:

“In recent weeks, universities have responded to support students and maintain services as much as they can in the current circumstances. However, the class of 2019/20 have faced unprecedented disruption to studies from industrial action, COVID19 and other issues and student complaint services will face significant challenges from the volume and complexity of grievances  following the assessment period.

“At Weightmans, we have a track record of dealing with student disputes for universities. Our RESOLVE product encompasses the entire process, and is supported by analytical technology which will not only assist with an efficient management of claims, but allow us to consider trends and look at lessons learned in order to develop a plan for business moving forward.”

For more information, please contact Martin Vincent or Susan Matthews, or visit https://www.weightmans.com/landing-pages/resolve/

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