Do you want to make a complaint?

The process for making a complaint depends on who you are and what your complaint is about. Please choose from one of the following options:

Are you an employer referring a social service worker? Find out how employers can refer a social service worker here
Do you want to make a complaint about a social service worker? Find out how members of the public can make a complaint about a social service worker here
Do you want to make a complaint about the SSSC? Find out how to make a complaint about SSSC here
Do you want to complain about a
Find out how to make a complaint about a service here

Do you want to make a complaint about us?

We want to know what you think about the SSSC, our services and the way we deliver them. We try to give the best possible service in all areas of our work but we accept that sometimes something may go wrong. When this happens we would like to know so we can try to put things right.

We have a guide for members of the public who wish to make a complaint. Our complaints handling procedure also has more in-depth information on how we report on and learn from complaints.

You will find a summary of the key points on this page.

What do we treat as a complaint?

We define a complaint as an expression of dissatisfaction about the way in which we work, including the conduct of our staff. You can complain about things like:

  • delays in responding to your enquiries and requests
  • failure to carry out our business properly
  • our standard of service
  • our policy
  • treatment by or attitude of a member of staff
  • our failure to follow proper procedure.

Your complaint may involve more than one part of the organisation or be about someone working on our behalf.

Anonymous complaints

We will attempt to investigate anonymous complaints if possible, however it may be that the anonymous nature of the complaint will prevent a full investigation. We will use any outcome from an anonymous complaint to identify any operational deficiencies and improve service delivery.

Stages of a complaint

Stage one

Our aim is to resolve complaints as quickly and as simply as possible. If you feel able to do so, please raise your complaint with the member of SSSC staff that you have been dealing with. If you feel you can't complain directly to that person, please refer your complaint to their manager. You can find out who this is by contacting the SSSC by email to: or by telephoning 0345 60 30 891.

Let the member of staff or their manager know what the problem is, how it happened, and what you would like us to do to sort it out.

We will give you our decision in five working days or less, unless there are exceptional circumstances. Sometimes we might need more time to investigate – if we do, we will tell you.

If we can't resolve your complaint at this stage, we will explain why and tell you what you can do next. We might suggest that you take your complaint to stage two. You may choose to do this immediately or after you get our initial decision.

Stage 2

Stage two deals with two types of complaint: those that have not been resolved at stage one and those that are complex and require detailed investigation.

When using stage two we will:

  • acknowledge receipt of your complaint within three working days
  • where appropriate, discuss your complaint with you to understand why you remain dissatisfied and what outcome you are looking for
  • give you a full response to the complaint as soon as possible and within 20 working days from the day we received your complaint.

If our investigation will take longer than 20 working days, we will tell you. We will agree revised time limits with you and keep you updated on progress.

If at the end of stage two you remain dissatisfied you may complain to the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman (SPSO).

All stage two complaints will be handled by a member of our Executive Management Team (EMT). Where required, complaints at this stage will be referred to our Chief Executive. The EMT member will manage the complaint, and appoint an investigator if necessary.

If the complaint relates to the Chief Executive, stage two will be handled by two Council Members appointed by the Convener, with the involvement of an independent person if the members think this is reasonable. If the complaint is about a Council member or sub-committee member then stage two will be handled by the Chief Executive.

How to complain

You can use the form below to send us a complaint.

complaints form

First name:(*)
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Telephone number:
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If you don’t want to use the form, you can also make a complaint:

  • in person or in writing:
    Scottish Social Services Council
    Compass House
    11 Riverside Drive
    DD1 4NY
  • by calling: 0345 60 30 891
  • by emailing:

You can also make a complaint to any member of SSSC staff.

Do you want to complain about a service?

If you have any concerns about a regulated care service in Scotland you can: