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Comments, compliments and complaints procedure

We take complaints about our services seriously and deal with them in confidence. We use the information to try to improve our services to prevent the same issues happening again.

When complaining, tell us:

  • your full name and address
  • as much as you can about the complaint
  • what has gone wrong
  • how you want us to resolve the matter

Data protection

When you make a complaint, we will log information about your complaint and your name and contact details.  Information will only be collected and stored for the purposes of dealing with your complaint and improving our services. Your complaint and details will be treated confidentially.


Comments received will be evaluated. Where it is possible to improve service delivery, the manager will write to the sender, advising of the outcome within 10 working days. You can use the online comments and complaints form.


Compliments received will be brought to the attention of the manager and staff member(s) concerned.

What's a complaint and what's not

There are some things we can't deal with through our complaints handling procedures. For more information please read our what is a complaint and what is not a complaint page.

How long do I have to make a complaint

It is usually easier for us to resolve complaints if you make them quickly and directly to the service concerned.

Normally, you must make your complaint within six months but no longer than 12 months after the event itself.

In exceptional circumstances, we may be able to accept a complaint after this time limit. If you feel that the time limit should not apply to your complaint, please tell us why.

Have you been treated fairly?

If you feel you did not get the service, help or information you expected because of your age, gender, gender identity, race, disability, sexual orientation or religion/belief, please let us know.

Getting help to make your complaint

We understand that you may be unable, or reluctant to make a complaint yourself. Please read our page on getting help to make your complaint for help and advice.

Guide to our complaints procedure

You can make your complaint in person, by phone, by email, using our comments and complaints form or in writing. 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 a detailed investigation, we will tell you and keep you updated on our progress.

Stage 1: frontline resolution

We will always try to resolve your complaint quickly, within five working days if we can.

If you are dissatisfied with our response, you can ask us to consider your complaint again.

Stage 2: investigation

We will look at your complaint at this stage if you are dissatisfied with our first response. We may also look at your complaint immediately at this stage, if it is clear that it is complex or needs detailed investigation.

We will acknowledge your complaint within three working days. We will give you our decision as soon as possible. This will be after no more than 20 working days unless there is clearly a good reason for needing more time.

The Scottish Public Services Ombudsman (SPSO)

If, after receiving our final decision on your complaint, you remain dissatisfied with our decision on the way we handled your complaint, you can ask the SPSO to consider it.

We will tell you how to do this when we send you our final decision. For more information please go to our Scottish Public Services Ombudsman page.

The SPSO offers a range of fact sheets designed to give advice on some common topics of complaint that members of the public enquire about.  They outline what the SPSO can and cannot do about a specific complaint and provide details of other organisations that might be able to offer help or support to customers.

Related content

  1. Comments, compliments and complaints procedure
  2. Our standards for handling complaints
  3. Getting help to make your complaint
  4. Complaints performance