Complaints procedure

We have a two-stage complaints procedure. We will always try to deal with your complaint quickly. But if it is clear that the matter will need investigation, we will tell you and keep you updated on our progress.

As from 1 April 2021 we have implemented the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman's revised model Complaints Handling Procedure (CHP).

You can make a complaint in person, by e-mail, by phone, in writing or use our online complaints form.

Stage 1 - frontline response

We will always try to respond to your complaint quickly, within five working days or less, if we can. This could mean an on-the-spot apology and explanation if something has clearly gone wrong and what we will do to put it right as soon as possible. If it is clear your complaint requires investigation, we might move it directly to stage 2 straight away.

We will try to give you our decision within five working days. If we can't respond to your complaint within 5 working days, we will let you know.

If you are not satisfied with the response we give at this stage, we will tell you what you can do next. If you choose to, you can take your complaint to Stage 2.

Stage 2 - investigation

We will acknowledge your complaint within three working days and then we may contact you to discuss and understand why you are still dissatisfied and what you would like to happen.

We will try to resolve your complaint where we can and where we cannot resolve your complaint, we will give you a full response as soon as possible, normally within 20 working days.

If our investigation will take longer than 20 working days, we will tell you. We will tell you our revised time limits and keep you update on progress.

Scottish Public Services Ombudsman (SPSO)

You can speak to the SPSO if you are still unhappy after receiving our final decision or are dissatisfied with the way we handled your complaint. You must have gone all the way through our complaints handling procedure before the SPSO can look at your complaint.

The SPSO have produced a handy step-by-step video explaining how to complain about a public service.

Care complaints

If your complaint relates to a care service we provide, you can choose whether to complain to us or the Care Inspectorate. You can find out more about their complaints procedure, or make a complaint, by contacting them.

The Care Inspectorate has several offices around Scotland. Please refer to:

Key changes as of 1 April 2021

Our CHP has been adopted from the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman (SPSO) revised Model Complaints Handling Procedure.

The revised CHP features a number of key changes.

The key changes include:

  • The previously separate CHP for social work and the rest of the Council have been merged into one single CHP.
  • It features a new complaints outcome of 'Resolved'. We may resolve a complaint by agreeing any action to be taken with you, without making a decision on whether the complaint is upheld/not upheld/partially upheld.
  • We will confirm the points of complaint to be investigated and what you want to achieve at the start of Stage 2 - investigation.
  • The six-month timeframe to make a complaint also now applies where you wish to escalate to Stage 2 because you are unhappy with the Stage 1 response.
  • We have detailed in the CHP how we will support equal access to the complaints process.
  • We will signpost complaints raised on social media and other digital platforms to the CHP, and provide relevant contact details, as well as the support that is available.

Further information

We've developed our complaints handling procedures in line with SPSO guidance and feedback from customers.


Page last updated: 08/02/2024
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