What kind of complaints can we consider?

What we do and how we do it is governed by the Housing Ombudsman Scheme. In particular this sets out the matters that we can and cannot consider, what is called the Ombudsman’s jurisdiction.

There are some complaints that are always ‘out of the Ombudsman’s jurisdiction’ that is to say we can never consider them, these include for example complaints about landlords that are not members of the Scheme.

There are many other complaints that we may or may not be able to consider and these decisions are made at the Ombudsman’s discretion, for example, complaints that involve problems with service charges or if either party has started legal action.

There are some complaints from local authority tenants that could be considered by the Housing Ombudsman, the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman (LGSCO) or both Ombudsman. See our fact sheet for more information on these complaints.

We work with the LGSCO, under a memorandum of understanding, to agree a common approach to the definition of jurisdictional boundaries, early handling and signposting of complaints and other forms of joint working.

We also work closely with the Regulator for Social Housing, which is part of the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA). While we have different functions, we have a Memorandum of Understanding in place to work with each other within our legal frameworks. See Working with the Regulator for more information about our roles.

For more details on the Ombudsman’s jurisdiction please contact us.