Lodge a Complaint

About complaints

What can't we investigate?

Under the Ombudsmen Act, an Ombudsman cannot investigate complaints about:

  • private individuals, 
  • privately-owned companies, 
  • person acting as legal adviser to the Crown or as Counsel for the Crown, 
  • decisions made by courts or tribunals, 
  • government Ministers.  However, an Ombudsman can investigate complaints about: 
  • advice provided to government Ministers by government agencies; 
  • decisions made by government Ministers on requests for official information. 
  • An Ombudsman cannot investigate your complaint if you have a right of appeal or  review to a Court or Tribunal on the merits of your case, unless there are special circumstances that make it unreasonable for you to use those appeal rights, 
  • An Ombudsman cannot investigate any decision, recommendation, act, or ommision  made under the provisions  of the Constitution or any Act or regulation, 
  • An Ombudsman cannot investigate any decision, recommendation, act, or ommision of any person in his capacity as a trustee within the meaning of the Trustee Act 1956,

If we are not able to investigate your complaint, we will tell you why and may direct you to other complaint handling bodies that may be able to assist.

If you are unsure whether an Ombudsman can investigate your complaint, please contact us to discuss your complaint with one of our investigating staff.

Complaints about Police 

  • First, report the complaint to a member of the Police superior in rank to the member to whom the complaint relates 
  • If the complaint has not been investigated or the complaint has been investigated and you are not satisfied with the final result, call us on 20605

Who can make a complaint? 

Anyone can make a complaint. The Ombudsman can investigate complaints made by a person, group, company, organisation or government contractor. You can make a complaint on behalf of someone else, but we may still need to contact them to get their approval to proceed.

How can you make a complaint?

  • First, contact the Department your complaint is about 
  • If you are still not happy, call us on 20605

What can we investigate?

We can investigate complaints about the actions of:

  • Government Departments & organisations listed in the Schedule to the Ombudsman Act regarding "matters of administration" 
  • Before you make a complaint to our office, we suggest you try to resolve the problem with the relevant government department, agency or organisation. 

What can a complaint achieve? 

If the Ombudsman considers that there has been a deficiency in the administration actions of any Government Department or Agency, she can recommend that the relevant Government Department provide a solution or remedy. These recommendations might include asking the Government Department or Agency to: 

  • Reconsider the original decision 
  • Give further reasons for a decision 
  • Offer an apology 
  • Change a policy or procedure 
  • In the case of a debt, consider a waiver or write-off 
  • Consider compensation 
  • Review legislation or policy

How do you lodge a complaint? 

You can complaint by:

  • Letter: P.O. Box 748, Avarua, Rarotonga
  • by phone 20605, 
  • by fax 21 605, 
  • email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • fill in the on-line form on this website by clicking on "complaint form", or 
  • come and see us.



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