Decision : Closed after initial enquiries
Decision date : 22 Nov 2021
The Ombudsman's final decision:
Summary: We cannot investigate this complaint about a report the Council completed for the Court. This is because, by law, the content and production of such reports falls outside our jurisdiction.
- The complainant, who I will refer to as Mr B, complains that the Council was at fault in the production of a report for the Court.
The Ombudsman’s role and powers
- We cannot investigate a complaint about the start of court action or what happened in court. (Local Government Act 1974, Schedule 5/5A, paragraph 1/3, as amended)
- The Courts have said that we cannot investigate a complaint about any action by a council, concerning a matter which is itself out of our jurisdiction. (R (on the application of M) v Commissioner for Local Administration  EHWCC 2847 (Admin))
How I considered this complaint
- I considered information provided by the complainant.
- I considered the Ombudsman’s Assessment Code.
- Mr B’s children have been the subject of private law proceedings, during which the Court ordered the Council to produce a Section 7 report. Mr B complains that the report is inaccurate, and discriminates on the grounds of sex and disability.
- The Ombudsman cannot investigate this complaint because it concerns a Section 7 report. By law, matters relating to reports completed for a court fall outside the Ombudsman’s jurisdiction and we cannot investigate them. There is no discretion available to us.
- We cannot investigate Mr B’s complaint because it concerns a report completed for the Court.
Investigator's decision on behalf of the Ombudsman