We try to carry out our reviews as openly as possible. It is important that both the student and the provider know what information we will consider when we review the complaint and that both have a fair opportunity to respond to what the other has said.
What information do we ask for?
We may need to ask for information to help us decide whether we can look at the complaint. If we can look at the complaint, we will ask for all the information we need to make a decision or otherwise resolve it.
When reviewing a complaint, we will normally look at all the information that was available to the provider during its internal processes and when it made its final decision. We may also need information to help us understand the background and context of the complaint, even though the provider did not consider it during its internal processes.
Who do we ask for information?
When a student makes a complaint to us, we normally ask them to include a copy of their Completion of Procedures Letter and final decision with their OIA Complaint Form but not to send us any other documents at that stage.
We may ask the student or the provider for some information to help us to decide whether we can look at the complaint.
When we have decided the complaint is one we can look at, we will ask the provider to send us the information we think we may need to review the complaint. Providers are required to comply with any reasonable request for information that we make. We will also ask the provider to comment on the student’s complaint to us. The Information requests page gives guidance for providers on dealing with our requests for information.
The student has an opportunity to comment on the information the provider gives us.
Sometimes as we progress our review, we realise that we need more information and we may ask either the provider or the student for this at any stage of our review.
We will normally share all information sent to us with the student and the provider. Information that is sent to us in confidence will normally be returned to the sender and we won’t take it into account when we make our decision.
However, in very limited circumstances we might agree to accept information from either the student or the provider on the basis that it is not to be disclosed to the other party. If you think there are good reasons for any of the information you are sending us to remain confidential, please let us know.
See our Personal data pages for information about how we manage personal information we receive.
Deadlines and extensions
We set a deadline when we ask for information from the provider or the student, because receiving information in a timely way helps us to progress our review. If you are having difficulty meeting a deadline, please let us know. You can find out more about our approach on the Deadlines and extensions page.
Other things to tell us about
Please keep us up to date with any relevant changes of circumstance or contact details.
It is very important to tell us about any legal proceedings that may be relevant because this could affect whether we can review the complaint.