Telephone: 020 7601 2222 PO Box 36451 London EC2M 4WN
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Making a complaint
about the conduct of an individual police officer or member of
It is important that you read the information on this page in
full before making a complaint.
If you think that a police officer or member of police staff has
behaved incorrectly or unfairly, you have the right to make a
People who work in the police service should behave
appropriately at all times. Expectations about the behaviour of
both police officers and members of police staff are set out in
their respective Standards of Professional Behaviour. These
expectations include requirements to:
If you feel that someone working for the police has not met
these standards, you can make a complaint. These types of
complaints are dealt with under the Police Reform Act 2002, as
amended by the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act
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Complaints about the overall policies or procedures of a police
force are often referred to as ‘direction and control issues’.
These can include complaints about the organisation of a police
force or general policing standards in your local area. These
complaints cannot be dealt with under the Police Reform Act 2002,
as amended by the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act
There are several ways to make a complaint.
Public complaints (PDF)
If you are not happy with the way an officer has dealt with you,
please complete this form save it to your own computer, attach to
an email and send it to us at the following:
Expression of dissatisfaction
(PDF)If you would like to
express dissatisfaction with any element of the service, please
complete this form save it to your own computer, attach to
an email and send it to us at the following:
Free Adobe Reader software is required to complete this
Download Adobe Reader (external)
You can complain in person at your local station or any other
station within the City of London. A police officer or a member of
police staff will speak to you about your complaint and will
explain your options.
You can email us at
Write to the following address:
Professional Standards Directorate
City of London Police
PO Box 36451
Your complaint will be recorded by the Professional Standards
Department (PSD). PSDs have overall responsibility for recording
and handling complaints about the conduct of individual officers or
members of police staff. PSDs are completely separate from the
officers or members of staff who are complained about.
Once your complaint is accepted and recorded as being about the
conduct of a police officer or member of police staff, it will be
dealt with in one of two ways:
Local resolution is an informal approach to resolving
complaints. It allows forces to learn lessons and improve the way
they do things. Many people prefer their complaint to be dealt with
in this way. You cannot have your complaint dealt with using
local resolution unless you agree to it.
If you agree to have your complaint addressed through local
resolution, a local manager will discuss your complaint with you
and draw up an action plan covering the issues you have raised.
If at the end of the local resolution process you are
dissatisfied with the process followed, you have a right of appeal
to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC). For more
information, visit the IPCC website
If your complaint is not suitable for Local Resolution, a local
investigation will be carried out by a police investigator. The
investigator will usually be assigned from the police PSD, but they
could be from a local police division.
You will be informed how your complaint will be investigated,
what co-operation is required from you, how a decision will be
reached and what action will be taken at the end of the
investigation. The type of investigation will depend on the nature
and seriousness of your complaint and the likely outcome. An
investigation might range from telephone enquiries conducted in a
few hours to a more extensive process perhaps taking a number of
For more information visit the IPCC website
If you have made a complaint against the police and you are not
happy with the way it has been handled, you may be able to appeal
The appropriate authority, who is the Professional Standards
Directorate Appeal Decision Maker on behalf of the Commissioner of
the City of London Police.
If the complaint is about the Commissioner of the City of London
Police the appeal will be assessed by appropriate authority, which
is the Common Council for the City of London.
For more information visit the IPCC’s website.
Complaints about the conduct of people serving with the police
can be sent to the IPCC, but the IPCC does not have the power to
record complaints. If you complain to the IPCC, it must, by law,
forward the complaint back to the force involved for
Due to the exceptionally high numbers of complaints made to the
IPCC, it can take a number of weeks before a complaint is forwarded
to the relevant police force. In order to have your complaint dealt
with as quickly as possible, we advise you to complain to the City
of London Police using one of the methods set out in the making
your complaint section above.
The IPCC also investigates the most serious complaints and
allegations of misconduct against the police in England and Wales.
These complaints are referred to the IPCC by police forces. The
IPCC may decide to investigate an incident using its own
investigators (referred to as an independent investigation).
Alternatively, it can manage or supervise a police investigation
into the matter. The IPCC will only conduct independent
investigations into incidents that cause the greatest level of
public concern – for example, deaths in or following police