Our approach to reasonable adjustments
22 June 2023
An inclusive approach
It is important that everyone has equal access to our information resources, services and offices and that people find it easy to communicate with us. We have an inclusive approach to engaging with people and recognise that we are all different and may have different needs. This applies to everyone including the people we regulate.
If you have a disability, health problem or mental health issue, we can help you by making adjustments to remove or reduce barriers you might be facing.
We have a duty to provide reasonable adjustments for disabled people under the Equality Act 2010 but will also consider adjustments for people who may not meet the legal definition of a disability.
Let us know as soon as possible if you need us to make any adjustments for you and how we can help.
How do you ask for help?
You can request an adjustment by contacting either:
- the person you are already dealing with at the SRA, or
- our contact centre
We will treat your request sensitively and we will discuss with you how best we can help.
To help us understand what adjustments you need please also complete a Reasonable Adjustments Request form. This can also be done with your SRA point of contact or with help from the contact centre.
What adjustments can we make?
We will try to find a way to remove or reduce any disadvantage that you might be facing because of your disability, health problem or mental health issue.
The nature of adjustments we make will depend on your individual circumstances and the reason for your contact with us.
Some examples of adjustments we can make for those we regulate include:
- Allowing more time when you make an application to us or respond to our enquiries (we will tell you if we cannot extend a time limit set by law).
- Agreeing for you to have someone with you during an interview or firm visit.
- Providing a single person to manage your communication with us if several departments are involved.
Some examples of the adjustments we can make if you are complaining about a solicitor or contacting us for another reason:
- Taking your complaint and keeping you updated over the telephone if that better suits your needs.
- Providing information in a format that is easier for you to read.
- Making sure your accessibility needs are met if you are attending one of our events.
How do we decide what is reasonable?
In most cases it will be quite straightforward to make arrangements for you. In some cases we will need to find out a bit more about what you need before we can make appropriate arrangements. We consider each request on an individual basis, taking into account your circumstances and the details of your case.
By telling us what you need, we can agree an effective way of helping you while considering:
- How practical it is for us to make the adjustment.
- The resources involved in making the adjustment you have requested.
- whether your request would affect our responsibilities towards other people.
We will not be able to agree an adjustment that fundamentally changes our responsibilities or powers as a regulator. For example:
- For people we regulate, if there is an immediate risk to a member of the public, we are unlikely to delay an urgent investigation into allegations made about you or your firm, but we can make arrangements to help you through the process.
- For people who have made a complaint to us, we will not be able to investigate the complaint if it is not within our powers, but we will take time to explain our decision to you and direct you to other agencies that may be able to help.
When an adjustment has been agreed this will be recorded on our systems so we can provide that adjustment each time you get in touch with us.
We will continuously review reasonable adjustments to make sure that the adjustment is still required and continues to meet your needs.
Will you need to provide medical evidence?
In most cases we will not need to see medical evidence, but there are times when this will be necessary. You can read about our approach to medical evidence and health issues for people we are investigating.
Please contact us on 0370 606 2555 or speak to the person dealing with your case if you would like this information in a different format or you have any other questions.