The UKEB is committed to providing a high-quality service to everyone we deal with. If you think we have not met these standards, please tell us so we can continuously improve.

If you wish to submit a complaint, please complete our complaints form and submit this to

You can find out more about the types of complaints we can review and how we investigate them below. If you ask for your concern to be treated in confidence, the UKEB will seek to protect your identity and, where possible, only disclose your identity with your consent.

1. What types of complaints can we review?

We can review complaints about:

  • Our standard of service.
  • The behaviour of our personnel.
  • Any action or lack of action by personnel affecting an individual or group when exercising or failing to exercise the UKEB’s functions.

2. What will we not review?

  • Complaints already investigated through this process.
  • Anonymous complaints.
  • Requests for, or regarding access to, information or complaints about such requests where procedures and remedies are set out in legislation (e.g. Freedom of Information Act, Data Protection Act).
  • Complaints where you disagree with a decision by the UKEB, where the decision has been reached fairly and in line with any appropriate processes.  We are not an avenue for appeal against a decision you may disagree with but which has been made in line with due process.
  • Complaints about our relationship with personnel or contractual or commercial matters or disputes.

3. What might we decline to review or defer any review?

  • Complaints that would more appropriately be dealt with in another way (e.g. by referral to another body, or at a Tribunal or through the courts). 
  • Matters which we consider, in our sole discretion, may be more appropriately considered by a member of the Board or their nominee.
  • Complaints arising from any form of continuing action (such as an investigation or review by the UKEB or by another body which is still in progress).

4. Time limit for complaints?

  • Complaints should be submitted within 12 months of the conduct or matter that you wish to be reviewed, or within 12 months of you reasonably becoming aware of it.
  • If 12 months have passed, we will ask you to explain why we should look into it and why you did not complain earlier.

5. What happens to my complaint?

Once we receive your complaint, there is a two-stage process, as follows:

  • Stage 1: Internal Review of your complaint by the UKEB’s Central Complaints Manager.  Their decision on the substance of the complaint will be final and cannot be appealed.
  • Stage 2:  External Review by our Independent Complaints Reviewer of complaints about the process or service provided by the Internal Review. They will not overturn the Internal Review decision but may make recommendations to improve the process.  They may ask the UKEB to reconsider their prior review. 

6. What and when will I hear back from the UKEB?

We will acknowledge your complaint within 5 working days telling you who will be dealing with it. We will aim to fully respond within 6 weeks, however, this may vary depending on the complexity and nature of your complaint. We will tell you if it may take longer than this.

7. Outcome letter

The outcome letter will contain:

  • An explanation of how your complaint has been considered.
  • Our conclusions on your complaint, with reasons.
  • Acknowledgement of any mistakes and the actions we intend to take.

8. What if I disagree with the outcome letter?

There is no appeal if you disagree with the Internal Review. The complaint is considered closed and further correspondence will be acknowledged but, unless significant new issues are raised, further replies will not be sent. However, if you have a complaint about how the matter has been handled you can ask for an External Review by the Independent Complaints Reviewer.

9. Who is the Independent Complaints Reviewer (ICR) and what is their role?

The ICR is an external appointee with experience of complaint systems and of the consumer standards that can reasonably be expected of public bodies. The ICR is an independent contractor with no other connection to the UKEB. Please email to contact the ICR.

9.1 Is there a time limit for requesting the ICR to look at your complaint?

Yes, within 1 month of the date of the Internal Review response.

9.2 What types of complaint does the ICR review?

  • Poor service in regards to handling of the complaint, including failure to follow policies or comply with standards related to speed and accuracy.
  • The way in which the UKEB has investigated the complaint.
  • A decision by the UKEB not to investigate a complaint.
  • The behaviour of our personnel in relation to the review of your complaint.

In requesting an ICR review you should outline in what way you think the Internal Review has been mishandled or failed to follow process so that the ICR can direct their review to address the issues you see as important.

9.3 What complaints will the ICR not review?

The ICR will not review complaints which have not had an Internal Review.

9.4 What complaints may the ICR decline to review or defer review of?

The ICR will not usually review the following types of complaints:

  • Complaints about an ongoing Internal Review until it is complete unless there has been an unreasonable delay.
  • Complaints where you have failed to provide information or clarification as requested.

9.5 When will I hear back from the ICR?

  • We will acknowledge your complaint in 5 working days and may ask for further information.
  • The ICR will aim to complete a report within 6 weeks of having received the UKEB file. The time taken to respond may vary depending on complexity of your complaint and volume of documentation to be considered. If the ICR is unable to respond within 6 weeks the ICR will explain why and update you regularly as to when you may expect their report.

9.6 What will the ICR outcome letter do?

  • It will consider whether the UKEB has acted appropriately and in accordance with its policies in connection with the Internal Review.
  • It may make recommendations, where appropriate, regarding how complaints should be dealt with or Internal Reviews conducted in future cases.
  • It will not act as an appeal against the substance of the underlying Internal Review outcome i.e. it cannot overturn the original decision. 

If the ICR considers that the relevant decision was not reached reasonably, or in accordance with due process, the ICR may remit the matter to the UKEB and ask the UKEB to undertake the Internal Review again (or other action that the ICR considers appropriate).

9.7 What if I disagree with the ICR’s response?

The ICR’s report represents the final stage in the UKEB’s process.  There is no route of appeal or avenue of further engagement. 

Unreasonable Complaints & Communications Policy

Dealing with unreasonable, persistent or repetitive complaints can place strain on our resources. Please refer to our policy for further detail (available here). We may limit or stop communicating with complainants considered to be unreasonable, persistent, repetitive or vexatious.