The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman is a free, independent service which can investigate individual complaints about councils, all adult social care providers (including care homes and home care agencies) and some other public service organisations. If they decide to investigate, they look at whether organisations have made decisions the right way.
Before making a complaint to the LGSCO, the constituent must first complain to the organisation involved to give them a chance to resolve the issue. They must go through all of the stages of that organisation’s complaints process, and the LGSCO’s website lists some tips for making a complaint. If, after the organisation’s complaint process has been completed, and the constituent is still not satisfied, then they can complain to the LGSCO – but only if it is a matter which they are able to investigate. The LGSCO will not investigate unless the organisation’s complaint process has been completed.
The types of issue the LGSCO can investigate include
- Adult social care
- Children’s Services
- Benefits and tax
- Planning and building control
- Environment, regulation and waste services
- Transport and highways
- Leisure and culture
- Corporate services, elected members and personnel
You should check on the LGSCO website to make sure that the matter you wish to raise is one that they cover.
The best way to make a complaint to the LGSCO is for the constituent to fill in the complaint form on their website: https://www.lgo.org.uk/how-to-complain It is better that the constituent does this themselves, if possible – it’s quite simple and does not need to be an essay, just a paragraph will do. It is preferable to use the online system, so that it keeps the telephone line free for those who are not able to go online.
Those who are not able to use the online system may telephone 0300 061 0614 to speak to an adviser.
The telephone line is open:
Mondays 10am till 1pm
Tuesdays 10am till 1pm
Wednesdays 1pm till 4pm
Thursdays 10am till 1pm
Fridays 10am till 1pm