This fact sheet is aimed at residents with complaints that have:
- completed the landlord’s complaints procedure and part or all of the complaint is still unresolved, and
- either eight weeks have passed or the complaint has been referred by a designated person, and
- either the complaint was not resolved through our early resolution investigation procedure or early resolution was not attempted (e.g. because of objections by the parties or because the complaint was complex).
What happens next?
When a complaint has not been resolved by this stage we have a duty to investigate it.
How will you investigate my complaint?
The investigation will be conducted by a caseworker who will assess whether the actions taken by the landlord were fair in all the circumstances of the particular case.
Our role is different to that of the courts. We cannot determine whether the law has been broken but rather consider what is fair in all the circumstances of the case. We collect and examine all the evidence, such as a landlord’s policies and procedures, plus any internal files, documents and correspondence. We may request further evidence from both parties in order to address the key issues. The purpose of the investigation is to establish whether the landlord has been responsible for maladministration.
What happens at the end of the investigation?
We will send a determination letter to the complainant and/or their representative, the landlord and any designated person involved. It will include information about the complaint, the investigation process, the findings and conclusions reached and the reasoning behind this.
How long will it take?
We receive high volumes of cases and our aim is to deal with them as quickly and effectively as possible. An investigation can be a long, complex process but we aim to complete 95% of cases within 12 months and to reach six months on average by March 2018.
More detail on our approach to investigating complaints in accordance with the Housing Ombudsman Scheme is set out in our investigation guidance.
We are always keen to find ways of improving the services we give. See our Comments and complaints page.