Scottish Public Services Ombudsman Act 2002

JurisdictionScotland
Citation2002 asp 11


Scottish Public Services Ombudsman Act2002

asp 11

The Bill for this Act of the Scottish Parliament was passed by the Parliament on 21st March 2002 and received Royal Assent on23rd April 2002

An Act of the Scottish Parliament to make provision (including provision for the purposes of section 91 of the Scotland Act 1998) for the appointment and functions of the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman; and for connected purposes.

The Scottish Public Services Ombudsman

The Scottish Public Services Ombudsman

S-1 The Scottish Public Services Ombudsman

1 The Scottish Public Services Ombudsman

(1) For the purposes of this Act there is to be an officer known as the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman (in this Act referred to as the ‘Ombudsman’) who is to be an individual appointed by Her Majesty on the nomination of the Scottish Parliament.

(2) Her Majesty may, on the nomination of the Parliament, appoint individuals to be deputy Scottish Public Services Ombudsmen; and in this Act references to a deputy Ombudsman are to any such deputy.

(3) There are to be no more than three deputy Ombudsmen at any time.

(4) The Ombudsman's functions may be exercised by a deputy Ombudsman if—

(a) the office of Ombudsman is vacant (unless there is an acting Ombudsman appointed under paragraph 5(1) of schedule 1), or

(b) the Ombudsman is for any reason unable to act,

and while exercising those functions the deputy Ombudsman is to be treated for all purposes, except those of paragraphs 3(a), 4, 7 and 8 of schedule 1, as the Ombudsman.

(5) Schedule 1 makes further provision about the appointment, status, etc. of the Ombudsman and deputy Ombudsmen and about other administrative matters in connection with those officers.

Investigations by the Ombudsman

Investigations by the Ombudsman

S-2 Power of investigation

2 Power of investigation

(1) The Ombudsman may investigate any matter, whenever arising, if—

(a) the matter consists of action taken by or on behalf of a person liable to investigation under this Act,

(b) the matter is one which the Ombudsman is entitled to investigate, and

(c) a complaint in respect of the matter has been duly made to the Ombudsman.

(2) The Ombudsman may investigate any matter, whenever arising, if—

(a) paragraphs (a) and (b) of subsection (1) are satisfied, and

(b) the person liable to investigation has requested the Ombudsman to investigate the matter.

(3) Without prejudice to paragraph 2(2) of schedule 1, it is for the Ombudsman to decide whether to initiate, continue or discontinue an investigation under subsection (1) or (2).

(4) The Ombudsman may take such action in connection with the complaint or request as the Ombudsman thinks may be of assistance in reaching any such decision.

(5) Such action may, in particular, include action with a view to resolving the complaint or request.

S-3 Persons liable to investigation

3 Persons liable to investigation

(1) The persons liable to investigation under this Act are the persons specified, or of a class specified, in Parts 1 and 2 of schedule 2; and references in this Act to a listed authority are references to any such person.

(2) Her Majesty may by Order in Council amend Part 2 of that schedule so as to—

(a) modify any entry in it,

(b) remove any entry from it, or

(c) subject to subsections (3) to (6) and section 4, add any entry to it.

(3) An entry may be added to that Part of that schedule only if the entry relates to a person who, or a class of persons each of whom, is—

(a) a Scottish public authority with mixed functions or no reserved functions,

(b) a publicly-owned company, or

(c) a person who is neither a Scottish public authority nor a publicly-owned company but who appears to Her Majesty to exercise functions of a public nature.

(4) An Order in Council under subsection (2) adding an entry to that Part of that schedule in pursuance of subsection (3)(c)—

(a) may provide for this Act to apply to any person to whom, or falling within any class of persons to which, the entry relates subject to such modifications or exceptions as may be specified in the Order in Council, and

(b) must, in relation to each such person or class of person, specify the functions of a public nature which appear to be exercised by that person or, as the case may be, persons of that class.

(5) No recommendation to make an Order in Council referred to in subsection (4) is to be made to Her Majesty in Council unless every person to whom the Order relates has been consulted.

(6) No entry is to be added to Part 2 of schedule 2 in relation to—

(a) a person whose sole activity is, or whose main activities are—

(i) the provision of education, or the provision of training otherwise than under the Industrial Training Act 1982 (c.10),

(ii) the development of curricula, the conduct of examinations or the validation of educational courses,

(iii) the control of entry to any profession or the regulation of the conduct of members of any profession, or

(iv) the investigation of complaints by members of the public regarding the actions of any person or the supervision or review of such investigations or of steps taken following them, or

(b) a person operating in an exclusively or predominantly commercial manner or a person carrying on under national ownership an industry or undertaking or part of an industry or undertaking.

S-4 Persons liable to investigation: supplementary

4 Persons liable to investigation: supplementary

(1) A person is a publicly-owned company for the purposes of section 3(3) if that person is a company wholly owned by the Scottish Ministers or by any listed authority.

(2) A company is wholly owned—

(a) by the Scottish Ministers if it has no members except—

(i) the Scottish Ministers or companies wholly owned by the Scottish Ministers, or

(ii) persons acting on behalf of the Scottish Ministers or of such companies,

(b) by a listed authority if it has no members except—

(i) the authority or companies wholly owned by the authority, or

(ii) persons acting on behalf of the authority or of such companies.

(3) In subsections (1) and (2), ‘company’ includes any body corporate.

S-5 Matters which may be investigated

5 Matters which may be investigated

(1) The matters which the Ombudsman is entitled to investigate are—

(a) in relation to a listed authority other than one to whom paragraph (b), (d) or (e) applies, any action taken by or behalf of the authority (other than action consisting of a service failure) in the exercise of administrative functions of the authority,

(b) in relation to a health service body or an independent provider, any action taken by or on behalf of the body or provider (other than action consisting of a service failure),

(c) in relation to a listed authority other than one to whom paragraph (d) or (e) applies, any service failure,

(d) in relation to a family health service provider, any action taken by or on behalf of the provider in connection with any family health services provided by that provider,

(e) in relation to a registered social landlord, any action taken by or on behalf of the landlord.

(2) In subsection (1), ‘service failure’, in relation to a listed authority, means—

(a) any failure in a service provided by the authority,

(b) any failure of the authority to provide a service which it was a function of the authority to provide.

(3) The Ombudsman may investigate a matter falling within subsection (1) pursuant to a complaint only if a member of the public claims to have sustained injustice or hardship in consequence of—

(a) where the matter is such action as is mentioned in paragraph (a), (b) or (e) of that subsection, maladministration in connection with the action in question,

(b) where the matter is such failure or other action as is mentioned in paragraph (c) or (d), the failure or other action in question.

(4) A person making such a claim is referred to in this Act as the ‘person aggrieved’.

(5)...

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