Consumer complaint checklist

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You may find it useful to use this checklist and keep it with you when you make your complaint.  You can also find out what happens when you make a complaint.

The Department has also produced fact sheets on the concilliation process and business tips for handling complaints

Check your rights

Know your rights.  Look for more information about: 

Are you able to claim a refund, repair or replacement? If in doubt, contact us.

Are you clear about your complaint?

What’s the fault with what you’ve bought or the service you’ve received? For example, it doesn’t work, it’s damaged, it doesn’t do what it’s supposed to.

If you are not sure about your rights contact Consumer Protection by calling 1300 30 40 54 or sending an email.

Act quickly - Report the fault as soon as you can. 

Are you reporting an unlicensed trader or scam?

You can do a licence search to check if your trader is licensed.  Please send Consumer Protection an email if you suspect your trader is operating unlicensed.  

If you think you have recieved a scam, please contact WA ScamNet

Contact the business and stay calm, even if you are angry

Once you know where you stand with your rights and responsibilities, contact the shop or business to talk it over with the trader. Assert your rights without being aggressive. Stay polite but be clear about what you want. You can also write a letter.

Sample letters

We have created some samples which may be helpful. They include templates for complaints about general reatil issue, residential tenancy, motor vehicle repairs, faulty goods, retirement village and building work.

Complain in person or on the phone

Remember the person you’re talking to may not be in a position to give you what you want. Stay polite and if necessary ask to discuss the matter with the person in charge. 


  •  What the problem is
  •  What you want them to do about it. Decide what you want, for example, a refund, a replacement or repair.
  •  When you want it done by (give a reasonable amount of time)

Give your contact details

Give them a contact name and telephone number in case they need to contact you.

Keep records

Keep a record of:

  • Who you talk to
  • What you talked about
  • The date

Keep a copy of any:

  • Receipts
  • Letters​
  • Emails
  • Notes from phone conversations

Putting a complaint in writing

If you haven’t resolved your issue with a phone call or visit, follow-up with a letter

Provide details about the issue and your attempts to resolve it. (We have produced some sample letters to assist you).

  • Quote your reference, agreement or account number if you have one.
  • Enclose a copy of any receipt, proof of purchase or any other relevant documents.  
  • Request a response within a reasonable timeframe (set a deadline).
  • Don’t send originals.
  • Keep a copy of your letter.
  • Check you have the correct name and address.

If you don’t get a response

If talking or writing doesn’t work, contact us to find out who is responsible for the industry or practice with which you are having problems.

Contact us for details about the industry body, e.g. board or committee, to contact for your particular issue. Check whether the industry responsible has its own internal complaint resolution body. Contact the industry association and explain your issue. 

Making a formal complaint

If you still can’t resolve the issue, you can make a formal complaint to Consumer Protection 

You can lodge a complaint online or print a complaint form to mail or hand deliver to Consumer Protection. 

Make a complaint

After you have tried to resolve the issue yourself without success you can make a formal complaint.  If you need assistance please contact our Advice Line on 1300 30 40 54.

Consumer complaint form

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