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Policies for Complaint Handling (1413A/23)


Time period (where appropriate) 2018-2023

Please can you provide :

  1. Internal policy (or Guidance), procedure/process on complaint handling – to include initial receipt, processing complaint, professional standards, handling IOPC responses ( should be available in the professional ethics Dept)
  2. Internal policy (or Guidance), procedure/ process on handling legal claims submitted to the police – like letters of claim, letters of response, handling part 36 offers ( should be available in your legal Dept)


With regard to question 1; please see the following information from our Professional Standards Department:

Complaints against police are handled under the Police (Complaints and Misconduct) Regulations 2020.

Link: The Police (Complaints and Misconduct) Regulations 2020 (

A complaint, if submitted via the external complaints portal will be received in the Professional Standards Department and the complainant should be contacted by a complaint handler. If a complaint is recorded as a Schedule 3 complaint and an investigation is required, the complaint is required to be handled, ‘reasonably and proportionately’ and there is therefore no specific time frames for investigating a complaint. In relation to final outcomes there are specific timings in relation to disciplinary proceedings and the above legislation details this.

Below are links to the main legislation that addresses complaint handling which is underpinned by the Police Reform Act 2002 and are the main documents a complaint handler would refer to. The IOPC statutory guidance and Home Office guidance supports the legislation and the additional guidance specifically relates to discriminatory investigations. The IOPC publish Focus documents to support as does the College of Policing.

With regard to question 2; there are no internal policies held as the rules are set out in the Civil Procedure Rules.


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