Kirklees Metropolitan Borough Council (18 004 142)

Category : Housing > Other

Decision : Upheld

Decision date : 02 Aug 2018

The Ombudsman's final decision:

Summary: The Ombudsman will not investigate this complaint about damage caused to the complainant’s fence. This is because the Council has agreed to repair the fence.

The complaint

  1. The complainant, whom I refer to as Ms X, complains that the Council had not responded to her requests to repair her fence.

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The Ombudsman’s role and powers

  1. 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 an investigation if the Council has provided a fair response. (Local Government Act 1974, section 24A(6), as amended)

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How I considered this complaint

  1. I read the complaint and got some information from the Council. This includes an email which says the Council has agreed to repair the fence. I invited Ms X to comment on a draft of this decision.

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What I found

  1. Ms X owns her home. The property next day is owned by the Council and rented to tenants. In June Ms X came home to discover that the Council had removed part of her hedge while doing work to the neighbouring property. Since then Ms X has been trying to get the Council to repair the fence.
  2. The Council visited Ms X in early July. The Council has agreed to fill in a small gap in the fence. The Council reports Ms X has accepted this as a remedy. The Council is considering how to prevent similar incidents happening again.

Assessment

  1. I will not start an investigation because the Council has provided a fair remedy by agreeing to repair the fence and consider ways it can stop similar events happening again. It is unlikely an investigation would lead to a different outcome.

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Final decision

  1. I will not start an investigation because the Council has agreed to repair the fence.

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Investigator's decision on behalf of the Ombudsman

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