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Wet - was it you that received a payment from the LGO?

(31 Posts)
screamingcarrots Fri 25-Oct-13 18:03:25

I have received an initial view from the investigator with a financial offer but am advised that this could change following my comments.
Do they normally put in a small offer and expect you to challenge it?
Any advice would be good. Thanks

inappropriatelyemployed Fri 25-Oct-13 18:26:48

God, if you are getting any kind of offer, you are doing really well!

screamingcarrots Fri 25-Oct-13 18:33:53

Well it's nothing compared to all the distress we've had though.
Do they not normally offer anything then?

inappropriatelyemployed Fri 25-Oct-13 19:00:02

No, they don't. You normally have to go through years of fighting them tooth and nail, through reviews even just to eek out a minor sum.

Blimey!!!! An offer <faints>

sazale Sat 26-Oct-13 07:31:44

Screamingcarrots, I had an initial view recently with a financial offer too. Just waiting on the final report now. I didn't realise it was rare!

screamingcarrots Sun 27-Oct-13 11:37:10

Sazale did you feel your offer was reasonable though? The sum offered is actually derisory in relation to the harm caused.
I do have concerns regarding part of the decision that makes it seem o.k that the LA acted unlawfully hmm and will be questioning this.

TBH, I would be wary of accepting money over an apology.

An apology admits fault and opens the potential for future legal action should you need compensation for a screwed up education or stress related illness.

screamingcarrots Sun 27-Oct-13 12:04:07

Hmm,thanks Star, good point. There has been an apology about part of the issue but not the main point that was the actual illegality.

wetaugust Sun 27-Oct-13 12:23:22

Yes, they offered me £250 in compensation for the distress caused and the trouble it had taken me in pursuing the complaint and the LGO also ordered the LA to make a formal apology.

I took the money, as it was the apology that I really wanted.

The money probably didnt cover the papaer, postage and printer catridges I used.

wetaugust Sun 27-Oct-13 12:27:47

before I accepted the offer I asked my solicitor to check whether it could affect the legal case that I was pursuing in parallel for educational negligence. Answer was no.

We mentioned in the legal case submissions that the LGO had found in our favour and it was all settled out of Court - so I'm inclined to think that the LGO decision in out favour actually strengthened our other case.

screamingcarrots Sun 27-Oct-13 12:53:17

Wet Can I pm you to ask something please?

2tirednot2fight Sun 27-Oct-13 13:11:29

I have had four payouts following LGO findings, none of which I accepted as appropriate for the level of distress caused other than one where the LA looked very silly having not recorded meetings and then disputing they had happened which I could prove. I think the LGO completely misses the point in terms of the level of stress families face. It would be interesting for there to be some form of outcome sharing because I am sure there would be inconsistency.

Complaint number five about to be lodged!

screamingcarrots Sun 27-Oct-13 13:13:38

2tired What happened when you didn't accept?

wetaugust Sun 27-Oct-13 13:18:24

Yes Screaming - ask away.

\definitely agree that the LGO 'compensation' is just token. Their investigatotrs obvioulsy see that many of these disputes are long drawn out and have cause severe distress. Small amounts really don't compensate for that.

But I suppose they do it to keep both parties happy. The complainant gets their complaint upheld and an apology (the importmt bit) whilst the LA does not feel too hard done by as it only has to pay small amounts to the complainant. The LA probably even manages to hide these payments from their Councillors as the amounts are so small they would not need Councillor sign-off.

The whole thing is a farce.

2tirednot2fight Sun 27-Oct-13 13:26:15

They ignore the fact that you don't accept the amount to be appropriate and still tell the council to pay the amount they claim to be appropriate, though in one case they did increase the amount but it didn't go anywhere near covering loss of earnings in order to pursue the complaint. This process is all we have though so I will still use it.

2tirednot2fight Sun 27-Oct-13 13:27:45

Anyone get onto the LGO advisory forum? I think mumsnet parents should set up their own!

screamingcarrots Sun 27-Oct-13 13:53:28

Thanks Wet, pm has been sent.

sazale Sun 27-Oct-13 14:24:51

My complaint is regards social services and the amount definitely does not reflect what they have put us through but the money is secondary to the letter of apology they have proposed to be sent and that the payment is to acknowledge the injustice they have caused me. The ombudsman has also managed to get them to finally complete the core assessment.

2tirednot2fight Sun 27-Oct-13 14:37:05

I would agree with everyone that the apology is the most important bit but when you have had umpteen apologies for the la to carry on regardless the apology whist still important is a few words on a piece of paper which is written on the instruction of another body. If an LA were sorry it would change what it does and if they thought that doing the right thing was what was needed you would have got this in the internal complaint.

Oh I agree, and apology plus an order to change practice WITH A REVIEW DATE (coz LA's pay no bloody attention to LGO orders) and subsequent heavy fine for not complying.

2tirednot2fight Sun 27-Oct-13 15:07:43

Star that Sounds much more like a way forward if that is the aim of the LGO and it isn't just a process to stall or prevent legal challenge which is what I personally feel is its purpose, for me the best a LGO finding does is embarrass the LA and now the findings are published again does so openly, I don't expect justice from an LGO complaint because that isn't how it works in my experience.

wetaugust Sun 27-Oct-13 15:49:05

The LGO also told my LA to change its practices but there was no review date or any indication that this action would be followed up.

The only 'penalty' to LAs (apart from bunging a few pence of Council Tax to disgruntled parents) is that adverse LGO decisons are one of the performance indicators that the LAs are assessed against. So each upheld decision is a black mark against the council. I think they do actually care about tha.

2tirednot2fight Sun 27-Oct-13 15:53:11

That's interesting wet but as so many seem to end in local settlements which the complainant has no say in, I wonder if these count in the same way?

Can the LGO enforce a local settlement?

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