Reasonable adjustment policy

23 January 2017

An inclusive approach

It is important that everyone has equal access to our information and resources 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 we may be able to support you even if you do not have a disability as defined by the Act.

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.

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 depends 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).
  • Offering you an alternative if you are unable to use our online applications.
  • Allowing you to have someone with you during an interview or firm visit.
  • Agreeing 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:

  • Offering you an alternative to our online services and applications.
  • Taking your complaint and keeping you updated over the telephone if that is easier for you.
  • Using your preferred way of communication - by email, telephone or in person.
  • Providing information in a format that is easier for you to read.
  • Involving someone who is supporting you.

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.

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. This usually applies to the people we regulate when we are dealing with serious regulatory matters.

For further information and for copies of this policy in an alternative format please speak to the person dealing with your case or contact us.