Adult care complaints

Most complaints can be resolved locally, by talking to your care worker, or their manager.

If you have tried this, or don’t feel it is an option in your circumstances and wish to take your complaint further, you can make a complaint through our official complaints procedure.

Making a complaint about adult social care 

Who can complain?

You can make a formal complaint to us as long as you:

  • Receive or have received services that are provided by or commissioned by Norfolk County Council
  • Are someone who is affected, or likely to be affected, by an action or decision of Norfolk County Council

Complaining on behalf of someone else

You can complain on behalf of someone else if they have grounds to complain and they:

  • Have died, or
  • Can’t make the complaint themselves because they aren’t physically or mentally capable, or
  • Have asked you to act on their behalf and we would only share information if we receive consent of the individual concerned

If you make a complaint on behalf of someone who doesn’t have mental capacity, you must act in that person’s best interests.  Otherwise, the complaint won’t be considered.

When you can't make a complaint

You can’t use the complaints procedure if:

  • You made a complaint orally and it was sorted out by the end of the next working day
  • You’re employed by the organisation and you want to complain about an employment issue
  • Your complaint has already been considered under the complaints procedure
  • Your complaint has been or is being investigated by the Local Government Ombudsman
  • If legal action is underway.

Time limits

You should normally make a complaint within 12 months of the date of the event that you're complaining about, or as soon as you first knew about the problem.

Adult Social Care Complaints Process - Informal Stage

If you have a complaint, you can tell someone you know from the service and they will try to resolve the problem promptly. If they cannot resolve the problem, they will offer to pass your details to the corporate complaints team to be dealt with under the Complaints procedure.

If you don’t feel your complaint can be resolved locally, or if local resolution has failed, you can use our online form to make a complaint.

Adult Social Care Complaints Process

If your complaint relates to adult social care services we will endeavour to respond within 15 working days where possible. However, depending on the complexity this may take longer. We should normally finish any investigation and provide you with a response within 6 months. 

When we first receive your complaint we will allocate it to a member of the complaints team. We will write to tell you we have received your complaint within five working days and let you know when you can expect to receive a response.

We will gather and review all of the evidence (what you have said, what staff and others said, what’s recorded in our systems, both electronic and paper, along with relevant legislation or guidance) to get the clearest picture possible of what has happened.

Once the complaint has been looked into we will write to explain the outcome of the investigation and what we intend to do to resolve the problem.

If you are not satisfied with the response you can contact us again and we will review the response and your comments and decide if the service needs to do more to put things right. If this is the case we will contact you to tell you what else we intend to do to resolve your complaint. If we believe the service has done all they reasonably can do we will write to advise you of this.

Adult Social Care – Independent Review 

If you are not satisfied with our response to your complaint you have the right to contact the Local Government Ombudsman (LGO) to discuss your concerns:
Tel: 0300 061 0614

Adults, Health and Wellbeing complaints – not social care

If your complaint does not relate to social care services we provide, but is about other services we’ve provided, for example financial services, homelessness services, or other aspects of the support and advice we’ve given, we follow the Corporate Complaints Procedure.

Get help

Mediation can sometimes be offered at any stage within the complaints process as an alternative way to resolve your complaint, and before the complaint is escalated to a higher stage.  We will discuss this option with you if mediation is appropriate.