The Ombudsman can investigate complaints about the actions and decisions of Australian Government agencies to see if they are wrong, unjust, unlawful, discriminatory or just plain unfair. The Ombudsman also seeks remedies for those affected by administrative deficiencies, and acts to improve public administration.
The types of complaints that can be investigated include problems with Centrelink and Veterans’ Affairs payments and concessions, child support and immigration.
The Ombudsman can also investigate complaints about contractors providing goods and services to the public under a contract with an Australian Government agency, including those associated with immigration detention centres and Job Active providers.
The Ombudsman can't investigate complaints about:
- private individuals or companies (other than when providing goods and services to the public under a contract with an Australian government agency or in his role of Overseas Students Ombudsman or Private Health Insurance Ombudsman)
- decisions of courts or tribunals
- employment disputes (except in the Australian Defence Force)
- actions of State or local governments
- actions of government ministers and
- actions of some government business enterprises.