Appendix 4: Complaints about earthquake-related matters

Earthquake Commission: Managing the Canterbury Home Repair Programme.

As a general principle, it is preferable for complaints to be resolved as close to their source as is possible. Potential sources of advice and assistance include:

  • the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority's Residential Advisory Service (; and
  • the Canterbury Insurance Assistance Service, administered by the Canterbury Insurance Assistance Trust Board ( The Canterbury Insurance Assistance Service has informed us that it expects to be fully functional from early 2014.

When parties are unable to reach resolution, complaints can be made to a range of agencies (see Figure 24). We are providing the information in Figure 24 because, to our knowledge, it has not been made available in one location before.

Figure 24
Agencies to which formal complaints about aspects of the recovery effort in Canterbury can be made

Agency Types of complaint considered Website address
Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority Concerns about the earthquake recovery strategy, policy, planning, and co-ordination
Human Rights Commission Consideration of whether a person's human rights have been breached
Institution of Professional Engineers New Zealand (IPENZ) Complaints about alleged unethical conduct or incompetent or negligent engineering work by a member of IPENZ, or a Chartered Professional Engineer, or a holder of an engineering quality competence mark
New Zealand Police Instances of fraud or other criminal behaviour
Office of the Auditor-General Improper conduct affecting a public entity's effectiveness or efficiency
Office of the Ombudsman Disputes about administrative decisions by a public entity, including individual repair and settlement decisions made by EQC

Concerns about agencies' handling of requests for information under the Official Information Act 1982
Office of the Privacy Commissioner Instances where personal information may not have been protected or respected
Relevant licensing body for a given trade – for example, the Building Practitioners Board for builders Disputes about whether the conduct of a tradesperson has been consistent with the licensing requirements for their trade
Serious Fraud Office Instances of serious or complex fraud, or bribery and corruption

As well as these agencies, there is the option of testing decisions and practices in the courts.

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