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Make a complaint about Adult Social Care

We always try to give you the best services possible, but sometimes that does not happen. Making a complaint can help fix problems and make sure they do not happen again.

Please note, we can only accept complaints about the council. If you're complaining about a care home, home care provider, or any other support service, you must contact them directly.

Lots of problems can be fixed without needing to make a complaint. You can talk to the staff member concerned (or their manager) about what's gone wrong, and what you'd like them to do.

If that does not help, you can make a complaint.

Make a complaint

If you'd like to make a complaint about our services, the quickest way to do it is online. We do not normally accept complaints about events or issues which happened more than 12 months ago.

Alternatively, you can email complaints@middlesbrough.gov.uk, or write to: Complaints Team, PO Box 500, Middlesbrough, TS1 9FT.

If you need help, call the Complaints Team on 01642 729814.

How the Adult Social Care complaints policy works

Initial complaint


Your complaint will be sent to the complaints team. They'll let you know when they've received your complaint, usually within one working day.

We'll contact you if we need more information.

Some complaints can be dealt with immediately. If this is possible, the complaints team will do this, if you agree.

If your complaint cannot be dealt with within 5 working days, it will go to the formal complaints process.

Stage 1 (local resolution)


A member of staff from the service you're complaining about will look at your complaint. It will not be the person or team your complaint is about. We call them the investigating officer.

The investigating officer will contact you as soon as possible. They'll double check the details of your complaint with you.

They'll also decide when they'll respond to your complaint by, and agree that date with you. It will be between 20 working days and 6 months from the date they contact you. This will depend on how complicated your complaint is. If it's not possible to meet this deadline, the investigating officer will contact you and let you know.

Once the investigating officer has looked into your complaint, they'll contact you to let you know what they've decided. This will be one of three things:

  • your complaint is upheld - meaning the council did something wrong
  • your complaint is partially upheld - meaning the council did something wrong
  • your complaint is not upheld - meaning the council did not do anything wrong

If we did something wrong, we'll apologise and tell you what we'll do to put things right.

If you're still unhappy, you can complain to the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman (LGSCO).

Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman


The LGSCO investigates complaints made to councils. It looks at whether the council did something wrong, for example when making a decision or providing a service. It also looks at whether there were any problems with how your complaint was handled.

You can visit the LGSCO website to find out more and make a complaint.