Investigations

In 2015-16, we conducted 1,118 investigations. Of these, 209 (19%) resulted in the total or partial rectification of an issue.

If you have a complaint about a state government department or agency (including state schools and TAFE), local council, or public university we may be able to investigate and help fix the issue. Find out what to expect if you make a complaint to us.

The Ombudsman Act provides special powers to support our investigations, including powers to:

  • make preliminary inquiries to decide whether a complaint should be investigated
  • investigate informally
  • investigate formally, using coercive powers.

Most investigations are completed informally and cooperatively. However, we have formal powers to obtain answers and access documents. We also have the power to enter and inspect premises. 

We can make recommendations to rectify unlawful, unfair or unreasonable decisions and improve administrative practices.

While the majority of our investigations are based on complaints, investigations into serious systemic issues may be initiated by the Ombudsman. These investigations are often released publicly to bring these issues to the attention of parliament, the public sector and the general public.

If your organisation is being investigated by us and you have been asked to respond to an enquiry from us, you may be interested to learn more about how we handle our investigation.