How we deals with complaints

We want to make sure that when you tell us that you are not happy with something, your complaint is dealt with fairly and as quickly as possible.  We have tried to make our complaints process as straight forward as possible, which is set out below.


There are separate complaints processes for some specific services.

These are:

  • Data Protection (Subject Access Requests)/Freedom of Information/ Environmental Information Regulations
  • Your Mayor or Councillor
  • The outcome of statutory police complaint reviews where the GMCA (as the local policing body) is the Relevant Review Body. Such complaints can only be dealt with by way of Judicial review. More information is available here - Police Complaint Reviews - Greater Manchester Combined Authority (
  • Matters already subject to legal proceedings
  • Insurance claims against the GMCA
  • Employee (or, former employees) complaints relating to employment issues or disciplinary and grievance process
  • Issues raised through the GMCA’s 'Whistle-blowing' policy – these matters can be reported here - Reporting Fraud and Whistleblowing

You don’t have to know which process your complaint falls within, this is just to let you know that we will sometimes deal with things differently depending on the type of complaint

The Complaint Stages

If you are not happy with the services provided by the GMCA, the next step is for you to make a formal complaint.

You can do this by:


c/o GMCA Enquiries
Broadhurst House
56 Oxford Street
M1 6EU    

If you are unable to make a complaint using the above methods, please contact us by phone on 0161 778 7000 to discuss your requirements. Your complaint will be handled by a manager in the team you're complaining about.

For all complaints we will:

  • Let you know that your complaint has been received within 3 working days.
  • Provide you with a full response within 20 working days or explain why it might take longer.
  • Give you details of who has investigated your complaint and their decision on it.
  • Advise you on how to take your complaint further if you are still unhappy with the outcome.

You should complain to us within 12 months of the issue happening. We will not normally act on any complaint made after a period of 12 months. However, we will consider any exceptional reasons you may give us for not meeting this time limit.

If you submit a Data Protection (Subject Access Requests)/ Freedom of Information/Environmental Information Regulations request at the same time as a complaint relating to the same issue, we are likely to deal with the information request first as there are statutory timescales for these requests and the response may help resolve your complaint.

If you do not wish to complain yourself, with your written permission, someone else can do so on your behalf.

If you have been through Step 1 of the complaints procedure and you are unhappy with the outcome, you can ask for your complaint to be reviewed. Please do this within 10 working days of receiving the outcome of your complaint.

We will write to you within three working days to let you know:

  • Who is reviewing your complaint;
  • approximately how long it will take us to carry out the review; and
  • when they will send you a written reply.

We aim to complete a complaints review within 20 working days.

Managing Unreasonable Complainant Behaviour

We are committed to dealing with all complaints fairly and impartially, and to providing a high-quality service to those who make them. Occasionally customers may pursue a complaint in an unreasonable way which impacts on the GMCA’s resources and capacity to respond to their, or other people’s complaints.  We refer to such complainants as either vexatious or unreasonably persistent, and in such cases, we may take action to limit the contact the complainant has with us.  Such occurrences are rare, and we will first write to the complainant to advise that their contact is no longer considered reasonable.  Further information can be found on our policy below:

Policy on the management of unreasonable complainant behaviour (PDF, 206KB)

If you'd like to take things further – Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman

We hope we can resolve any complaints you might have. If, however, you are unhappy with the action we have taken, you may want to contact the Local Government Ombudsman.

You can contact the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman about your complaint at any time. However, the Ombudsman usually gives the Combined Authority the opportunity to investigate first.

You can contact the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman at:

Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman

PO Box 4771
Coventry CV4 OEH
Phone: 0300 061 0614
Text: 'call back' to 0762 480 3014

If your complaint relates to a matter that is overseen by the Information Commissioner your right of appeal will be to the ICO rather than the LGO, but we will let you know when we write to you.