We carry out independent reviews of how policing bodies operating in Scotland handle complaints made about them by members of the public. We call these complaint handling reviews.

In this section you can find out how to ask the PIRC to review how the relevant police body (See 'For Police' Q1 for a list of those bodiesPlease click here) handled your complaint, what the review process involves, the possible outcomes following a complaint handling review and some frequently asked questions. You can also access published complaint handling reviews. 

If you prefer, you can download our leaflet, A guide for the public on the role of the PIRC, which gives an overview of our services and the complaint handling review process.

The complaints process:

  • First, make your complaint to the Professional Standards Department of the relevant policing body concerned.
  • Then, if you are dissatisfied with their final response, you may then apply to the PIRC for a complaint handling review.
  • Finally, once we have completed our review, we may publish the findings.

What we publish

We publish an anonymised Executive Summary version of our complaint handling reviews on our website. A small number are not published, where there is a risk that publication could lead to identification of any of those involved.

Before you contact the PIRC

Before you contact the PIRC, we recommend that you read this section carefully to make sure that you have completed all the necessary steps in order for us to assist you.

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Complaint Handling Review process

Here you can find out more about what to do if you have a complaint about a policing body and more details about our role in reviewing complaints.

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Applying for a Complaint Handling Review

To apply for a complaint handling review please complete a form.

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Possible outcomes of Complaint Handling Reviews

This section lists some of the possible outcomes of your complaint handling review.

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