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Festive Period: Our office will be closed from Thursday 23rd December 2021 at 5 pm until Tuesday 4th January 2022 at 9 am (inclusive). You will still be able to submit enquiries and applications during this period to our contact mailbox: contact@scoaf.org.uk. But, they won’t be actioned until we re-open in the New Year.

Phone line: We are currently operating a voicemail call back service on our contact telephone number 0300 369 0689. All messages received are collected by our Enquiries Team, Monday to Friday, 9:00 am until 16:30 pm. Please leave a voicemail, with your name, phone number, email address (if possible), and enquiryWe aim to respond to all messages within 2 working days. Any messages received to our voicemail on Friday afternoon will be retrieved on Monday, after the weekend. 

You can ask the Ombudsman to review or investigate the decision

If you have received a decision letter and are unhappy with the outcome, then the Ombudsman maybe able to assist you. For more information on how the Ombudsman can help click on the decision you received below.

  • Admissibility

    If your complaint wasn’t accepted for investigation because it was:

    – out of time or

    – out of scope/excluded

    You can ask the Ombudsman to review the decision. You will need to have received the decision in writing. Applications to the Ombudsman must be made within 4 weeks and two days of the decision being sent.

    To find out more information and make an application click the button below.

    Application for Review of an Admissibility decision

  • Decision Body

    Whether you can ask the Ombudsman to investigate depends on the circumstances.

    The Ombudsman can only help you at this stage if you had no right of appeal after the Decision Body decision. If you had the option to appeal and chose not to, the Ombudsman cannot assist you. This is because the Ombudsman can only investigate if the complaint was finally determined in the internal process.

    If your Service decides that the appeal cannot proceed because the complaint is ruled out of time or it is not just & equitable for it to proceed, you can apply to the Ombudsman to review this admissibility decision. If the Ombudsman disagrees with the decision made, the complaint will go back to your Service to appoint an Appeal Body.

    However if the Ombudsman upholds the Service’s decision that the appeal can’t proceed this means that the Service Complaint is considered finally determined.  This means that you can only make a make a further application to Ombudsman for a substance and/or maladministration investigation. You will have 6 weeks and 2 days from the date of our appeal admissibility decision letter to submit your application to the Ombudsman.

  • Appeal Body

    If you believe that the wrong decision was reached or there was something wrong with the way your complaint was handled. You have 6 weeks and 2 days to make an application to the Ombudsman to request an investigation into:

    – alleged maladministration, and/or

    – the substance (merits) of your Service complaint.

    To find out more information and make an application click the button below.

    Application for investigation of Maladministration and Substance