Designated Person - Guidance

If you remain unhappy with our Complaints procedure you can request that your complaint be considered by a “Designated Person”.

Note: A “Designated Person” is either a landlord recognised “Designated Tenant Panel" any MP in England or any Local District Councillor.

The designated person may try to help resolve the complaint directly and /or may refer the complaint to the Ombudsman.

The Process

If, having exhausted our Complaints procedure, you wish to contact the Housing Ombudsman Service we will make arrangements for a Designated Tenant Panel (The ‘Panel’) made up from three members of the Residents’ Forum Group to be convened.

The Panel will carry out an independent desk-top review of the case (normally within 6 weeks) from a tenant’s perspective to ensure to the best of their abilities that the Trust has:

  • Correctly followed its policies and procedures
  • Acted in a “fair and reasonable” way
  • Proposed remedial measures or compensatory amounts that are “adequate and proportionate”

There are 3 likely outcomes from such a review:

1.    The Panel does not believe they possess the necessary technical or professional skill sets to enable resolution of the complaint and therefore with the approval of the complainant they refer the case to the Housing Ombudsman Service. 

2.    The Panel identifies either:

  • Some form of service failure not previously addressed
  • That the Trust has not acted in line with its policies or procedures
  • That the Trust has not acted in a fair and reasonable way
  • That the remedial measures or compensatory offers are not adequate

In such cases the Panel will ask the Continuous Improvement Team to liaise with the relevant staff to re-consider the final response and outcome from the Trust;

Following this the Panel will consult with the complainant who will either accept any revised outcome or they will authorise the Panel to refer the complaint to the Housing Ombudsman Service

3.    Alternatively the Panel considers that the response from the Trust was fair, reasonable and proportionate and that there are no unaddressed service failure issues. The Panel will advise the complainant of this and no further action will be taken by the Trust – complainant can take their case to the Housing Ombudsman Service.       

The Panel will not act on behalf of the complainant unless they first have written and signed authority that allows the Panel members to review all of the relevant complaint correspondence, data and information held by the Trust in relation to the case.   

All Trust staff will cooperate fully with any questions or requests made by the Panel and the Trust will not be involved in the review or decision making processes of the Panel.

The Panel will aim to complete their review within 6 weeks from being contacted by the complainant. A written response will be issued by the Panel.   

The Trust undertakes to consider carefully the outcomes of any such review or suggestions for improvement. 

If a complainant requests an MP or a Local District Councillor to act as their Designated Person then it will be the responsibility of that individual to decide how they wish to deal with the complaint. If approached we will provide answers to specific questions or copies of correspondence subject to signed authorisation being received from the complainant. We will aim to respond to such requests within 6 weeks.

The other option available to complainants, having first exhausted the Trust’s complaints procedure, is to wait for a period of eight weeks following the Trust’s final complaint response and then to approach the Ombudsman directly without involving a designated person/panel.

All our employees will cooperate with the Ombudsman and make all files and records available upon request. The Chief Executive or relevant Senior Manager will be the point of contact and all correspondence issued through them. The Trust will ensure full compliance on receipt of the Ombudsman’s “Final Determination” barring any exceptional circumstances.