Housing Ombudsman Complaint Handling Code LHP Self-Assessment

Housing Ombudsman Complaint Handling Code: LHP Self-assessment


Compliance with the Complaint Handling Code 


Definition of a complaint




Does the complaints process use the following definition of a complaint?


An expression of dissatisfaction, however made, about the standard of service, actions or lack of action by the organisation, its own staff, or those acting on its behalf, affecting an individual resident or group of residents.





Does the policy have exclusions where a complaint will not be considered?



Are these exclusions reasonable and fair to residents?

Evidence relied upon

Best practice examples provided by the HOS Code sections 1.4 and 15







Are multiple accessibility routes available for residents to make a complaint?



Is the complaints policy and procedure available online?



Do we have a reasonable adjustments policy?



Do we regularly advise residents about our complaints process?



Complaints team and process




Is there a complaint officer or equivalent in post?



Does the complaint officer have autonomy to resolve complaints?



Does the complaint officer have authority to compel engagement from other departments to resolve disputes?



If there is a third stage to the complaint’s procedure are residents involved in the decision making?

We have a two-stage process



Is any third stage optional for residents? 



Does the final stage response set out residents’ right to refer the matter to the Housing Ombudsman Service?



Do we keep a record of complaint correspondence including correspondence from the resident?



At what stage are most complaints resolved?

Early Resolution







Are residents kept informed and updated during the complaints process?



Are residents informed of the landlord’s position and given a chance to respond and challenge any area of dispute before the final decision?



Are all complaints acknowledged and logged within five days?



Are residents advised of how to escalate at the end of each stage?



What proportion of complaints are resolved at stage one?




What proportion of complaints are resolved at stage two?




What proportion of complaint responses are sent within Code timescales?


·       Stage one

Stage one (with extension)

·       Stage two

Stage two (with extension)







Where timescales have been extended did we have good reason?



Where timescales have been extended did we keep the resident informed?



What proportion of complaints do we resolve to residents’ satisfaction




Cooperation with Housing Ombudsman Service




Were all requests for evidence responded to within 15 days?




Where the timescale was extended did we keep the Ombudsman informed?




Fairness in complaint handling




Are residents able to complain via a representative throughout?



If advice was given, was this accurate and easy to understand?



How many cases did we refuse to escalate?



What was the reason for the refusal?





A complainant’s refusal to accept documented evidence as factual




Did we explain our decision to the resident?



Outcomes and remedies




Where something has gone wrong are, we taking appropriate steps to put things right?



Continuous learning and improvement








How do we share these lessons with:


a)    residents?

Feedback to complainant, updates on website and tenant newsletter and Board update through their Annual report


b)    the board/governing body?

Using quarterly performance reporting specifically regarding complaint response reporting and updates regarding learning through “Listen, Act, Learn”.


c)     In the Annual Report?










Has the Code made a difference to how we respond to complaints?




What changes have we made?
  • Updated Policies to align to the new code.
  • Trained all staff in the new approach focussing on learning
  • Created Customer First Champions within services
  • Reviewed and updated all correspondence
  • Delivered a communication campaign to customers launching the new approach
  • Created a Complaints handbook delivered to every customer explaining the new service, and how to make a complaint





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