Decision : Closed after initial enquiries
Decision date : 10 Jun 2020
The Ombudsman's final decision:
Summary: The Ombudsman will not investigate B’s complaint about the way his name is recorded on the electoral register. There is no significant injustice arising from the fault B claims.
- The complainant, whom I shall call B, complains the Council has failed to properly record his name on the electoral register and has omitted a hyphen and a colon.
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 would find fault, or
- the fault has not caused injustice to the person who complained, or
- the injustice is not significant enough to justify our involvement, or
- it would be reasonable for the person to ask for a council review or appeal.
(Local Government Act 1974, section 24A(6), as amended)
How I considered this complaint
- I considered the information B provided when he made his complaint. I sent a draft decision to B and considered his comments before making a final decision.
What I found
- While B says the way his name is recorded on the electoral register is incorrect, because it does not include the colon after his hyphenated first names, he has not explained how this causes any injustice to him. The Ombudsman will therefore not start an investigation into his complaint.
- The Ombudsman will not investigate this complaint. This is because there is no significant injustice to B from the fault he claims.
Investigator's decision on behalf of the Ombudsman