How we handle your compliments, comments and complaints

A compliment is an unsolicited expression of praise, admiration thanks or satisfaction from a customer.

A comment is a proposal or a suggestion for change or improvement from a customer.

Comments suggesting ideas will be considered by the service manager in charge and where possible we will ensure an immediate action is taken. However, some ideas may need further investigation and discussion with different services and/or service managers, therefore it may take slightly longer to agree the next steps.

There may be other suggestions that we are unable to take forward.

Compliments and comments will immediately be passed onto the appropriate service manager, who is responsible for the service that you are providing your feedback about. You will receive a response to acknowledge and thank you for your feedback.

A complaint is an expression of dissatisfaction by one or more members of the public about the council’s action or lack of action or about the standard of service, whether the action was taken or the service provided by the council itself or a person or body acting on behalf of the council.

By law, the council has to consider complaints about the following matters under separate procedures set by the government:

Complaint will not be considered about

  • A first request for service
  • Reporting a problem or fault for the first time
  • Reporting a breach in planning control, or any other legislation
  • An insurance claim
  • A concern raised by a contractor, member of staff, or partner agency about something which does not directly relate to a service provided to them as service users by the county council
  • Issues raised by county council staff relating to their employment with the council
  • Complaints about schools – these should be referred direct to the school
  • Complaints about issues covered by a separate appeals procedure for example, Penalty Charge Notices (PCNs)
  • Any matter on which you have commenced legal action against the council
  • Complaints from county council employees in respect of matters relating to their employment.

Please contact our customer service centre directly for these enquiries.

The corporate complaints procedure

The corporate complaints procedure deals with all complaints where there is not a specific or legal procedure to deal with the matter. 

This is a two stage procedure. 

  • Stage 1 – A formal acknowledgement by the area of the council that the complaint relates to. A response is usually provided within 20 working days unless a longer timescale is agreed due to the nature of the complaint.
  • Stage 2 – If appropriate, the complaint is considered by the county council's corporate complaints committee
A complaint can only be made after the issue that has been identified has already been considered as part of the usual business processes of the Council.
Complaints received anonymously will be recorded and considered where the Complaints Manager feels that is appropriate, but action may be limited if there is insufficient information available to ensure a full and fair investigation.

Confidentiality

We appreciate there maybe reasons why you may wish to remain anonymous when complaining to Lancashire County Council; however, please be assured that all your complaints are treated in confidence.

Lancashire County Council safeguards all personal information in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998. Your information will only be shared with those parties involved in resolving your complaint. For further information, please visit our privacy statement.

Reports

Social care complaints and customer feedback for the period 1 April 2016 to 31 March 2017.