Decision : Upheld
Decision date : 05 Nov 2018
The Ombudsman's final decision:
Summary: The Ombudsman will not investigate Ms A’s complaint about the Council’s actions regarding the delay in completing works needed in her home. This is because the Council and Ms A have agreed a remedy for the delay so there is no unremedied injustice for the Ombudsman to investigate.
- The complainant who I shall call Ms A says the Council failed to complete works arranged and agreed under a Disabled Facilities Grant (DFG). Ms A says the delay has caused additional stress and anxiety to her and her partner.
The Ombudsman’s role and powers
- We investigate complaints about ‘maladministration’ and ‘service failure’. In this statement, I have used the word ‘fault’ to refer to these. We must also consider whether any fault has had an adverse impact on the person making the complaint. I refer to this as ‘injustice’. We provide a free service, but must use public money carefully. We may decide not to start or continue with an investigation if we believe:
- it is unlikely we could add to any previous investigation by the Council, or
- it is unlikely further investigation will lead to a different outcome, or
- we cannot achieve the outcome someone wants.
(Local Government Act 1974, section 24A(6), as amended)
How I considered this complaint
- I considered the information and documentation Ms A and the Council provided. I sent Ms A a copy of my draft decision for comments
What I found
- Ms A complained about the time it had taken the Council to properly complete necessary works to adapt her property to meet the needs of her partner.
- The Council has accepted there were faults in this case. It has apologised to Ms A, awarded her £5000 in compensation and agreed to complete works to her garden. I understand Ms A is satisfied with this remedy.
- The Ombudsman will not investigate this complaint. This is because the Council and Ms A have agreed a remedy for the delay so there is no unremedied injustice for the Ombudsman to investigate.
Investigator's decision on behalf of the Ombudsman