How we are maintaining Service during the Coronavirus
We hope you are surviving this difficult time as best you can.
We wanted to explain the longstanding processes we have in place that allow us to continue to deliver our services safely and efficiently, notwithstanding the COVID-19 pandemic (Coronavirus).
Our systems are fully cloud based so that all members of our team are able to fully and seamlessly operate remotely from home in line with Government advice regarding social distancing, tiers, and the various lockdowns. We have had the ability to work in this way for a number of years.
At the moment, one member of staff attends each office daily by a safe and short journey to open, scan and send, physical post where necessary. We otherwise operate paperless offices.
As long as we have internet access there will be no disruption to our services and support.
You can contact us by telephone on 0345 314 2044 9:00am to 5:30pm on normal business days and emails are constantly monitored during business hours. Email us at [email protected] if needed. Aside from usual business hours in reality you will likely find our emails often monitored during evenings and weekends, including Public Holidays. You will often find us happy and able to respond outside traditional business hours reflecting the often emergency or urgent nature of our services.
We continue to be fully prepared and able to help with complex problems and disputes at very short notice.
Where large bundles of documents need to be delivered and collected we have always arranged this at our own expense where appropriate. All the time we can access courier services this will continue. As we are paperless we prefer to receive documents via Dropbox and/or WeTransfer services- both of which are free and efficient ways to send large volumes of documents to us.
Throughout the various developments of the pandemic the courts in which we operate, including County Courts throughout the country, and the High Court in London, have remained open. It has been confirmed that this will continue. We have resolved and have litigated significant numbers of disputes including adjudications, throughout the pandemic. Hearings are now almost exclusively conducted by video and/or remotely by telephone. We have all the equipment necessary to facilitate this and welcome this approach. We have worked in this way with domestic and international clients for many years.
There will of course be some delay at the courts but we do not expect this to be significant. Access to justice is rightly considered extremely important. As an example we are advised by the courts to expect approximately 10 working day processing times for post. Email, which we more commonly use, being quicker. Any delay will be slightly frustrating but these are not significant turnaround times in the context of the current situation and for many will provide reassurance that the courts are very much open for business. One area where the position is changing frequently, often without notice, is in relation to housing and possession/eviction claims. There have been a number of suspensions of evictions and changes in process and this area of law. We expect a degree of change and uncertainty to continue throughout 2021. Claims are however continuing to be processed and actioned, including as above. We of course keep the position under review and will update landlords, agents and investors subscribed to our email lists and social media feeds, as well as website visitors, as the position develops. In the meantime it is important to note that the vast majority of disputes continue to be resolved by the courts including by video hearings and telephone using arrangements that have been in place for some time.
We hope the above is useful but if you have any queries please contact us or any member of our team who will be happy to help. We hope you all stay safe.
Jonathan, Alex and the Helix Law team.