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Scottish Public Services Ombudsman

Call us on 0800 377 7330

Complaining to the SPSO about a council

We look at complaints after you have gone through the council complaints procedure to try to sort things out first.  If you have already complained to the council and are still not happy, you can ask us if we can look at your complaint.


Have you complained to the council?


If you have completed the council complaints procedure, the final response letter from them should tell you that you can take your complaint to our office. If it does not, you should contact them for advice on what to do next.

Complaining to the SPSO: what to do.


If you have not yet complained to the council or completed their complaints procedure, you should ask them for help.

See our leaflet “How to Complain about a public service” (PDF, 300KB) for information about making a complaint and getting help with your complaint. We have some tips on making a complaint that you may find helpful.

Bringing a complaint to the SPSO

If you’ve not yet complained to the council please do not send us your complaint. We can only look at complaints after they have been through the right complaints process. Please note, we cannot look at complaints made anonymously.

If you are still unhappy after the council sends you their final letter in response to your complaint, please tell us as soon as you can. We don’t usually look at complaints if the matter you want to complain about happened more than a year ago. We also don’t look at complaints that have been dealt with in court.

If you have completed the counci's complaints procedure and want to bring it to the SPSO, it is best to use a SPSO complaints form. Contact us for a form or make your complaint online.

What we do when we get your complaint

You can read about what we do when we get your complaint on our page "how we handle complaints".

Contact us

We can help with any questions before you send your complaint to us – one of our complaints reviewers is always available.

Please call us on freephone 0800 377 7330. You can also visit our office. You don’t need to make an appointment.

Contact us: full contact details

Updated: October 4, 2016