Complaints - Stage 2: Assess complaint using risk filter (FOD)

Step 2.1

For: Band 5 Complaints Handling Officer

Applying risk filter

Before applying risk filter

  • Ensure correct enforcing authority decision has been made¬†and seek guidance from technical inspector if needed.
  • Use any information from B6 about dutyholder and from COIN or local issues lists to identify any previous relevant advice or enforcement history.
  • For gas complaints about a landlord, consider contacting relevant Local Authority (LA) Housing department who may have information about the landlord concerned or might be investigating them for other reasons.
  • Using the information received on the Notifiers Concern Form apply the risk filter to obtain initial prioritisation of the complaint
  • Apply the Local factors to decide whether the initial prioritisation needs adjustment
  • Refer complaints on the local "hotlist" to the B2 immediately for decision.

After applying risk filter

  • If complaint is coded red or amber and dutyholder is not known take further steps to find details of dutyholder. If unsuccessful record details, including efforts to find dutyholder, as a Matter of Concern on local spreadsheet and email details immediately to relevant FMU B2
  • Where the complaint is classified as Green inform the complainant if feedback has been requested, by letter or telephone, that HSE will be taking no further action and the reasons for this decision.

For FMU B2

  • If details of a matter of concern which has been classified red or amber and where the dutyholder is not known are forwarded to you - inform the complaints team of whether any subsequent action has been taken by the FMU or not.


  • Create a new case on COIN for red and amber complaints. Add notes to the case and amend the relevant sections on the primary page. In the summary of the Notes make a note of the FMU number and that the complaint has been classed as red or amber, as appropriate.
  • In notes record PAWR code if the complaint has come via the Pay and Work Rights Helpline operated by BERR.

For guidance on this please see:

  • Green complaints do not need to be input on COIN, but details should be recorded on spreadsheet in accordance with local arrangements.
  • Make record on spreadsheet if concern came via Pay and Worker Rights Hotline using PAWR code.
  • Keep any letters sent to Green complainants with the relevant Notifiers Concern Form and store for 3 months

Where the complaint is classified as green, the complainant is dissatisfied and new information is received:

  • the B5 should review the new information and assess whether there should be a change in classification
  • If the status is changed from green to amber input a new case on COIN and carry out the complaint follow up. The notes should contain details that the category of complaint has changed and the factual information that prompted the change.
  • If the status is not changed, and the complainant is still dissatisfied, the information should be passed to the Appeals manager to respond to the complainant as per Appeals stage

Performance standards

  • Decide whether HSE is the enforcing authority and take the appropriate action:within one working day of receipt, or immediately, where there is an obvious risk of serious personal injury.
  • Apply the risk based filter within one working day of receipt
  • For green complaints where the complainant requested feedback inform them that HSE will take no further action and why, within 10 working days.
  • Email details of red and amber Matters of Concern to the relevant FMU Band 2 immediately, or within 24 hours, of the complaint being received.
  • If details of a matter of concern which has been classified red or amber, and where the dutyholder is not known, are forwarded to the Band 2, the Band 2 should¬† inform the complaints team of whether any subsequent action has been taken by the FMU or not.

Step 2.2 - Referring technical queries to an inspector

For the B5 Complaints Handling officer

  • The Band 5 should request assistance from an inspector where they have doubts regarding technical aspects of the complaint or categorisation of the complaint.

The inspector should:

  • Provide support to assist in categorisation of complaints when requested
  • Provide technical advice when requested

Step 2.3 - Referring exceptional complaints to Band 2 inspector

Refer the assessed complaint to a Band 2 for a decision on investigation or follow up if:

  • the complaint cannot be disclosed and involves a vulnerable person.
  • there is an ongoing issue, eg formal enforcement action is underway, or a previous history similar to the complaint, eg an accident within the last 12 months, or, for gas-related complaints, there has been a previous gas complaint or incident.
  • the complaint concerns 'work-related stress' affecting groups and not individual cases.
  • the complaint is from an elected representative on behalf of a constituent eg member of Parliament, the European Parliament or a devolved administration or local government.
  • It concerns conventional safety at a nuclear site. See memorandum of understanding.
  • it is a "serious" gas complaint (as defined), or a gas complaint where a third party dutyholder has been identified, or a gas complaint relating to an installer/engineer and the work was carried out over 12 months ago.
  • The complaint concerns ill health relating to storage or use of pesticides.

Performance standard

Ensure the Band 2 is made aware of the complaint:

  • immediately or at the latest within 24 hours of receipt

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Updated 2022-08-16