How do I file a complaint?
What’s the difference between filing an appeal and filing a complaint?
The Safety Codes Council complaint procedure
applies to the conduct, performance, or competency
of an organization or individual having authority, powers, or duties under the Safety Codes Act.
In contrast, the appeal process
applies to orders, refusals, suspensions and cancellations
For example, if you feel an SCO overlooked something or acted unprofessionally during an inspection, you may wish to file a complaint. If you were refused a permit and wish to take up this issue, you would appeal the refusal.
I’m unhappy with the quality of work done by a contractor or tradesperson. Can I file a complaint with the Safety Codes Council?
No, our complaints investigations deal only with people or organizations that have authority, powers, or duties under the Safety Codes Act and its regulations. This includes, but is not limited to:
- Safety codes officers (SCOs)
- Master electricians
- Permit issuers
- Accredited municipalities
- Accredited corporations
- Accredited agencies
- Accredited Regional Services Commissions
A contractor or tradesperson did poor quality work, and the inspecting SCO didn’t tell me. Do I have grounds for a complaint?
No. When an SCO performs an inspection, his or her job is to determine whether the work being inspected meets the intent of the applicable code. The codes are there to provide an acceptable level of safety only, not quality. The safety codes officials are not responsible for quality control of construction or installation outside of the safety codes aspects defined in the applicable codes.
The SCO who inspected my property didn’t inspect some part of it, such as the roof or sprinkler system.
Safety codes officers are not on site the entire time construction is being undertaken. While they do inspect, they may not inspect every aspect every time. Some specific installations such as sprinkler systems are also the responsibility of professionals such as engineers and qualified or certified installers. While the safety codes officer may not have looked at such an installation on site, the documented review of the other professionals is obtained. The Quality Management Plan of the organization that employs the safety codes officer outlines the types of things that must be inspected along with the inspection frequency.
I disagree with a fee charged to me by an accredited organization. Can this be resolved by filing a complaint?
No, the Council has no jurisdiction or influence over contracts, fees, or fee disputes. In addition, the Council does not award monetary damages or compel payment of monies at the end of an investigation.
What sets the standards for inspections and permits?
The standards are set by the Safety Codes Council. The Council has adopted a model Quality Management Plan (QMP) which every accredited organization must meet or exceed. The QMP states the requirements surrounding permits, plans reviews, site inspections, and inspection requirements. Requirements vary according to type of organization (municipality or corporation) and which discipline the work in question falls under.
I think something is unsafe. What can I do about it?
The first thing to do is to bring it to the attention of someone that can affect the correction. This is first the owner, then the authority, which in most cases is the municipality. Only when the accredited organization (accredited municipality or corporation) or safety codes officer is failing your expectations would the matter become a complaint for the Safety Codes Council.