Go to top of page

Complaints about TEQSA policy

13 June 2018

Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to establish principles informing TEQSA’s approach to managing complaints about TEQSA’s practices and services, or about the actions of a TEQSA employee or contractor.

Scope

This policy applies to external complaints about practices and services that TEQSA provides to its external stakeholders, and external complaints about the actions of TEQSA employees or contractors, including complaints alleging TEQSA employee or contractor bias.

This policy does not cover:

  • complaints about regulatory decisions by TEQSA—these are covered by review and appeal provisions
  • complaints about fees or charges for TEQSA applications—these are set by legislative instrument
  • complaints about higher education providers—these are covered by TEQSA’s policy on complaints about providers
  • internal complaints about TEQSA’s practices and services—these are covered by TEQSA’s internal grievance and public interest disclosure procedures
  • investigations about TEQSA conducted by the Commonwealth Ombudsman.

Principles

  1. TEQSA aims to provide high quality services to all stakeholders, and invites complaints from external stakeholders when its practices or services, or the actions of its employees or contractors, do not meet the standards set out in its Service Charter.
  2. TEQSA does not restrict the manner in which a complaint may be made. However, in general, complaints should be submitted using the complaints form accessed from the TEQSA website.
  3. If a complainant provides contact information, TEQSA will confirm receipt of the complaint, and provide information about how the complaint may be used.
  4. All complaints against TEQSA or its employees will be considered seriously and all such complaints will be investigated on the basis of an impartial examination of the evidence.
  5. Complaints about TEQSA will be handled in a way that is prompt, respectful, responsive, fair and consistent.
  6. Principles of procedural fairness will be applied to all parties when investigating and responding to a complaint about TEQSA’s activities and practices, and about the activities and practices of its staff.
  7. TEQSA will employ strategies to ensure impartiality in consideration of a complaint. To this end, consideration of complaints about TEQSA and staff members will be coordinated by TEQSA Legal Group—except in the case of a complaint about Legal Group or a member of Legal Group, in which case the complaint will be referred to the TEQSA CEO—and will be informed by TEQSA’s conflict of interest policy and any other relevant policies.
  8. A TEQSA staff member who is the subject of a complaint, or who was involved in a matter subject to a complaint, will not be involved in consideration of that complaint. The direct supervisor of a staff member who is the subject of a complaint will not, to the extent possible, be involved in consideration of that complaint and, where that supervisor is to be involved, this will be with the agreement of TEQSA Legal Group.
  9. Complaints are handled in accordance with TEQSA’s privacy and confidentiality obligations. In particular, to the extent that TEQSA proposes to disclose a complainant’s personal details, the complainant’s consent will be sought.
  10. Subject to TEQSA’s confidentiality obligations, complainants are informed of the action TEQSA takes in response to a complaint.
  11. Records of complaints about TEQSA will be maintained separately from other complaints, including from records of complaints about providers.
  12. TEQSA will use findings following investigation of a complaint to improve its practices and services to stakeholders.
  13. There a complaint falls outside TEQSA’s remit, the complainant will be informed of any other agencies to which the complaint may be relevant. 
  14. TEQSA may decide not to investigate a complaint found to be fraudulent, vexatious or vindictive.

Further information

Further information about our approach to the management and handling of complaints about TEQSA can be obtained by emailing: enquiries [at] teqsa.gov.au (subject: Further%20information%20regarding%20complaints%20about%20TEQSA)

Document information

Title

Complaints about TEQSA policy

Category

Regulatory policy

Audience

Staff

Policy owner

General counsel

Version

1

Effective date

7 June 2018

Review date

7 June 2021