FSNI complaints procedure

Details of Forensic Science Northern Ireland complaints handling policy and procedure.


It is the policy of FSNI to ensure all complaints relating to the quality of results or the level of service provided by FSNI are fully investigated and reported promptly.


Complaint: A written or verbal expression of dissatisfaction by an identified complainant about FSNI or its staff that requires investigation, response and closure.

Complaint handler: person nominated by the relevant Director to investigate the complaint and draft up the response

Step one

A complaint can be notified to FSNI in writing, by e-mail, or by telephone. The complaint should be directed to a relevant member of staff, if known, or to the e-mail address on the following contact page, with the word ‘Complaint’ in the subject line.

It is the policy of FSNI that all complaints must be acknowledged within three working days of receipt of the complaint.

The complaint will be passed to the relevant Director, who will assign a complaint handler.  The complaint handler will undertake the investigation and draft up the response.  The Director will provide a response to the complainant within 20 working days.  This will either be a full response, or an interim response, if the complaint requires more time for investigation.

Step two

If you are not satisfied with the response, you should write directly to the FSNI Chief Executive Officer, providing details of your complaint.

FSNI will acknowledge, within three working days, the complainant’s expression of dissatisfaction. The Chief Executive will review the matter with the aim of resolving the complaint and a full written response will be issued within twenty working days.

Step three

If you are not satisfied with the investigation or the decision reached by FSNI, or the response from the Chief Executive, then you should write directly to, or contact, the Northern Ireland Ombudsman’s office at the following address /website, providing details of your complaint:

The Ombudsman
Freepost BEL 1478

It should be noted that the sponsorship of an MLA is required for a complaint to be submitted to the Ombudsman.

Back to top