Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council (14 018 708)

Category : Housing > Allocations

Decision : Closed after initial enquiries

Decision date : 24 Mar 2015

The Ombudsman's final decision:

Summary: The Ombudsman will not investigate this complaint about a housing application. This is because she is unlikely to find fault by the Council.

The complaint

  1. The complainant, whom I refer to as Mr X, complains about the way the Council has handled his housing application.

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The Ombudsman’s role and powers

  1. The Ombudsman investigates complaints about ‘maladministration’ and ‘service failure’. In this statement, I have used the word fault to refer to these. She must also consider whether any fault has had an adverse impact on the person making the complaint. I refer to this as ‘injustice’. She provides a free service, but must use public money carefully. She may decide not to start or continue with an investigation if she believes it is unlikely she would find fault. (Local Government Act 1974, section 24A(6))

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How I considered this complaint

  1. I read the complaint and considered information provided by the Council. I invited Mr X to comment on a draft of this decision.

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What I found

  1. Mr X says the Council will not allow him to bid for properties in the Sefton area. He is unhappy that the Council will not put him in housing band B. He also complains that the Council cancelled his application in January 2015 because it said he is adequately housed.
  2. The Council says Mr X has a live housing application but it is managed by a different council and is registered to a previous address. Mr X can, and has, bidded for properties in the Sefton area but his bids have not been successful. The Council has explained that Mr X is in band F but the decision to place him in band F was made by a different council. The Council has asked the other council to update its records to reflect Mr X’s current address.
  3. I will not start an investigation because there is no suggestion of fault. The Council has not closed Mr X’s application, he can bid for homes in the Sefton area and the Council is not responsible for his banding.

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Final decision

  1. I will not investigate this complaint because it is unlikely I would find fault by the Council.

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Investigator's decision on behalf of the Ombudsman

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