If you have not be sated by the complaint handling of the OFT or
Trading Standards, there is another avenue, that of the Ombudsman.
The phrase, Ombudsman, has it's origins in the Old Norse mythology,
and it's use in the UK probably dates back to the Viking invasions
of Scotland and the North of England.
The term can be loosely translated as,
In the UK, an ombudsman is appointed to his position by the parliament
of Westminster, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland. His/her role
is as a representative of the people, and is there to address the
concerns of private citizens of the United Kingdom.
A UK ombudsman is usually attached to a specific area of private/public
life. Such as, an ombudsman of the health service, banking or agriculture.
Large and small businesses are often a part of ombudsman schemes
for their business sector.
Some examples of ombudsman schemes are listed below,
- http://www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk/ (Insurance, Banking etc
- http://www.ombudsman.org.uk/ (Parliamentary and Health Service
- http://www.lgo.org.uk/ (Local Government Ombudsman)
- http://www.tpos.co.uk/ (The Property Ombudsman)
- http://www.otelo.org.uk/ (Office of the Telecommunications Ombudsman)
- http://www.energy-ombudsman.org.uk/ (Energy Ombudsman)
- http://www.pensions-ombudsman.org.uk/ (Pensions Ombudsman)
- http://www.olso.org/ (http://www.olso.org/ (Office of the Legal
Contacting a ombudsman with a complaint is usually a means of last
resort. The ombudsman will have expected you to have exhausted all
previous mediation with the trader/company/organisation you wish
to complain about.
The services of an ombudsman are usually free. An ombudsman is
impartial and acts as a judge between his chosen field of expertise
and the complainant. The decision that an ombudsman purposes is
not binding within the law, but usually conveys enough weight for
the trader/organisation to comply with it.