Help us to put things right: our complaints procedure
Making a complaint
The Department for Transport aims to provide a high quality of service to the public. Please let us know if you feel we have not achieved that aim and we will try our best to put things right. Feedback - both good and bad - helps us continue to improve our service.
If your complaint is about ...
... the service you have received from the central part of the Department for Transport (not one of the executive agencies), the guidance below explains who you should complain to and how we will deal with your complaint.
... our policies or transport-related legislation, you should contact the relevant policy division, the details for which you will find on our website. Alternatively, you can ask your MP to take up your complaint with the Secretary of State for Transport.
... the service provided by one of our executive agencies, you will need to get in touch with that Agency direct. Each of the Agencies have their own complaints procedure and details can be found on their websites - addresses below.
... our handling of a request for information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, Environmental Information Regulations 2004 or the Data Protection Act 1998 , please follow the links for further guidance, or contact the Enquiry Service.
Complaints about our service
If you have a complaint about our service, normally the best way to resolve it is through the officer you have been dealing with. You can do this over the phone, by email, in writing, or you may be able to make an appointment to see them in person.
If you feel that this is not the right way to resolve your complaint, or you have already tried and are not satisfied with the outcome, you should make a formal complaint by writing to the Head of the Division you have been dealing with. The correspondence address for our staff is available through our Enquiry Service. The division should acknowledge your complaint within 5 working days and provide a full response within 20 working days.
Please contact the Enquiry Service if you need any help in making a complaint.
If you remain dissatisfied, you can write to our independent Complaints Officer, Lara Bolch. She is independent of the policy and operational divisions in DfT and will look at your complaint with a fresh pair of eyes.
Please note that the Complaints Officer cannot consider a complaint until it has first been reviewed by the relevant division. Sending your complaint direct to the Complaints Officer will delay the handling of your complaint.
The Complaints Officer is also unlikely to be able to consider our actions during the course of court proceedings which have their own procedures for appeal.
The address to write to is:
Department for Transport
D/04, Ashdown House
Sedlescombe Road North
St Leonards on Sea
The Complaints Officer will acknowledge your complaint within 5 working days. As part of his investigation she will need to discuss your complaint with the Division you dealt with originally. She will then make recommendations to them on how best to resolve your complaint and, if appropriate, how to prevent the same thing happening again.
Following this you will receive our final response, which should be within 15 working days. If we need longer, we will let you know why and when to expect our final reply.
What to do if you remain dissatisfied
If you are not satisfied with the Complaints Officer's response you can write to your MP, who can refer your complaint to the Parliamentary and Health Services Ombudsman (The Ombudsman). Further information about the Ombudsman service can be found from:
Office of the Parliamentary and Health Services Ombudsman
London SW1P 4QP
Helpline: 0845 015 4033
Fax: 020 7217 4160
Complaints about the DfT agencies
All DfT Agencies have their own procedure for handling complaints. Further information about each agency can be found at their website:
- Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) - www.dvla.gov.uk
- Driving Standards Agency (DSA) - www.dsa.gov.uk
- Government Car and Despatch Agency (GCDA) - www.gcda.gov.uk
- Highways Agency (HA) - www.highways.gov.uk
- Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) - www.mcga.gov.uk
- Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA) - www.vosa.gov.uk
- Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA) - www.vca.gov.uk