Parliamentary Ombudsmen

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Mind Map by Sebss , updated more than 1 year ago
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Parliamentary Ombudsman

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Parliamentary Ombudsmen
1 Investigates complaints of maladministration by the general public that have suffered injustice as a result
1.1 R (on the application of Bradley) v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions - workers worked towards their pensions. Which they were expecting when they retire. But the company had collapsed so they were unable to receive their pension payouts
1.1.1 The claimants could not show if the injustice was caused by the maladministration
1.2 Injustice has not been defined within the Act
2 Maladministration is not defined in the act but this allows flexibility on a case to case basis
3 The public cannot complain directly to the ombudsman, they have to make a complaint in writing to the MP
3.1 The MP may reject this complaint or progress it to the ombudsman - known as the MP filter
3.1.1 This illustrates three functions: that the ombudsman is a servant (but they are independent) to Parliament, allows the MP to decide whether the claim is fit for investigating,, and it allows irrelevant complaints to be rejected which would decrease the workload of the ombudsman
3.1.2 MP has the choice to solve the problem themselves or using an alternative rather than using the ombudsman
3.1.2.1 May result in MP's preventing relevant complaints reaching the ombudsman, they may be unwilling to submit complaints (could conflict with rule of law)
4 The complaint must be made within 12 months from the issue was first discovered. But this is discretionary to allow some late applications
5 After investigations have been conducted, the ombudsman must report is back to the MP who referred the complaint
5.1 Illustrates Parliamentary supremacy
6 Complaints for the ombudsman are rising so workload is increasing
6.1 But the high rise in complaints could illustrate the great success rate it has and it is efficient
7 Judicial review has expanded so much with locus standi widening that the use of an ombudsman has decreased
7.1 But judicial review can cost around £10,000 if a claim is lost - an ombudsman is a cheaper alternative as it is a free service
8 Available legal redress - this was introduced in order to stop the ombudsman from overlapping with the courts
8.1 The ombudsman should decline an act where a judicial remedy exists regardless of whether it would have been successful or not - R v Local Commissioner for Local Administartion ex p Croydon London Borough Council 1989 1 All ER 1033
8.2 They will investigate minor matters that are not suitable for judicial review
8.3 Decisions taken under royal prerogative are not subject to be investigated by the ombudsman, students' complaints against the university are also not subject to this
9 Investigations are done in public and the ombudsman has access to relevant papers
9.1 But can lead to the process to become slow - can take 48-52 weeks
10 Maladministration is not defined within the Act
10.1 What is considered to be good administration is getting it right, being customer focused, being open and accountable, acting fairly and proportionately, putting things right and seeking continuous improvement
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