Complaint categories


Listed below are the complaint categories we use and their definitions.


see Potential misconduct

______ information deficient

No information was provided about _______.
The ________ charged were more than the estimate and the complainant wasn't notified.
The complainant wasn't told about specific extra ______, such as disbursements.
Allternative _______ options available to the complainant were not mentioned.

_______ excessive

_______ has been charged when it is not chargeable.
The same piece of work or ______ has been charged more than once.
There are errors in the invoice calculation.

Criminal activity


Data protection/breach of confidentiality

Information being disclosed to a third party without the complainant's consent.


Taking an unreasonable amount of time to carry out a specific task.


The complainant makes a claim of discrimination by the ______. This will be referred to the approved regulator.

Failure to advise

Legal advice, which would reasonably be expected, was not given.

Failure to comply with agreed remedy

After agreeing to a remedy to resolve a complaint, the remedy has not been implemented. This can be a remedy agreed with or without the involvement of the Legal Ombudsman or a predecessor complaints handling body.

Failure to follow instructions

Failure to follow a specific instruction or request from the complainant.

Failure to investigate complaint internally

Failure to provide details of their internal complaints procedure.
Delay in responding to the complaint.
Only responding to part of the complaint.

Failure to keep informed

Failing to keep the complainant informed of progress.

Failure to keep papers safe

Loss of specific documents or a file.
Damage to specific documents or a file.
Loss of property.
Damage to property.

Failure to progress

Failure to act as would reasonably be expected to move a complainant's case forward.

Failure to release files or papers

Refusal or failing to release files or papers.

Failure to reply

Failure to respond to telephone calls, emails or letters.

Potential misconduct

The complaint is about a potential breach of the professional rules of conduct. A potential misconduct complaint will often be accompanied by another complaint type concerning service that can be investigated.


If the complaint raised does not fall into one of the above categories, this option is used

Complain about a Police Officer

Force: An allegation that an officer used excessive or inappropriate physical or deadly physical force.

Control Techniques: An allegation that a "control technique" was used unreasonably or improperly. This would include control holds, hobble, "take downs," and handcuffing.

Conduct: An allegation that tends to bring reproach or discredit upon the Police Bureau or City of Portland. It involves behavior by a Bureau member that is unprofessional, unjustified, beyond the scope of their authority, or unsatisfactory work performance.

Disparate Treatment: Allegations of specific actions or statements that indicate inappropriate treatment of an individual that is different from the treatment of another because of race, sex, age, national origin, sexual orientation, economic status, political views, religious beliefs, or disability.

Courtesy: Allegations relating to rude or discourteous conduct, other than disparate treatment.

Procedure: Allegations that an administrative or procedural requirement was not met. This would normally include the failure of a police officer to follow general policies and procedures that relate to identification, report writing, notebook entries, and property/evidence handling.