Our Policy on Client Rights and Complaints

This policy describes how we expect our staff to behave with clients and how we resolve written client complaints.

On this page:

- Our code of client rights
- Our promise to clients
- How we resolve written complaints
- How you can appeal

Our code of client rights

You have the following rights when you’re our client.

  • The right to be treated with respect.
  • The right to have your privacy, culture, religion, social values, and ethnicity respected.
  • The right not to be discriminated against, coerced, harassed, or exploited in any way.
  • The right to have services provided in a way that respects your dignity and independence.
  • The right to an appropriate standard of service that
    • is provided with reasonable care and skill
    • complies with legal, professional, ethical, and other relevant standards
    • is consistent with your needs.
    • is provided with other agencies to promote quality and continuity of services.
  • The right to effective communication with us — we will do our best to communicate openly, honestly, and effectively

The right to complain. You can complain any way you prefer, but our complaint resolution process below will only apply to written complaints.

Email: [email protected] — include the word ‘complaint’ in the subject line

Write to: 

The Complaints Officer

Primary ITO
PO BOX 10-383
The Terrace
Wellington 6143

Our promise to clients

  • We will ensure we resolve complaints fairly, simply, quickly, and efficiently.
  • We will make every effort to resolve complaints with the parties involved before they become formal written complaints. However, you have the right to complain in writing at any time.
  • We will record all written complaints in our complaints register, and handle any personal information according to the Privacy Act 2020.
  • We will document all written complaints and the actions Primary ITO took to resolve those complaints.
  • You can ask for any information we have about the complaint. We will give you the information if it can be released under the Privacy Act and other legislation.
  • We accept our rights and responsibilities. We will not act illegally, unethically, or outside our contracts.
  • We have the right to take legal action against complaints that are intended to annoy or are made in bad faith.

How we resolve written complaints

We'll tell you in writing when we receive your complaint. Within 10 working days of our acknowledgement, we will tell you one of two things:

— whether we think the complaint is justified, the reasons for our decision, and any actions we’ll take and how much longer we need for the investigation
— if we need more than 20 working days, we’ll explain why and tell you how often we’ll update you.

We'll investigate your complaint

How we investigate the complaint depends on the nature of the complaint. We may do any or all of the following:

  • interview the person who made the complaint and take statements from any others involved
  • facilitate a discussion between the person who made the complaint and the persons complained about
  • review documents such as written agreements, emails, and publications
  • use any other investigative methods as necessary and appropriate. If we believe your complaint is of a criminal nature, we will notify the police.

 We’ll tell you the result of our investigation

When we finish investigating, we’ll write to you and discuss all the parts of your complaint. We may also outline what we’ll change to correct or improve the issues highlighted.

How you can appeal

If you’re dissatisfied with how we resolve your complaint, you can appeal to the Chief Executive. You must:

  • make your appeal in writing within 10 working days of receiving the result you wish to contest
  • clearly outline why you’re dissatisfied with the decision — attach supporting documentation and copies of any correspondence you would like reviewed.

The Chief Executive’s decision is final.

We may not be the right organisation to deal with your complaint

If your complaint is about any of the following issues, you can complain to the relevant agency.

If your complaint is about one of these issues

Contact this agency

We’re not delivering the right number of teaching hours for your course or study Tertiary Education Commission
Our performance does not meet the Tertiary Education Commission’s funding conditions  Tertiary Education Commission
You’re unhappy about how your course is taught or unhappy with its quality  New Zealand Qualifications Authority 
You face or notice discrimination   Human Rights Commission 
You’re concerned about how your information has been stored or used   Privacy Commission 
You’re an international learner and have a concern   New Zealand Qualifications Authority