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An outline of how the broadcasting standards complaints process works
Find out what you can complain about
How to know which broadcasting standard applies
What action can the BSA take after it determines a complaint?
Frequently asked questions
The BSA only has jurisdiction to consider formal complaints about programmes. Formal complaints must:
- be in writing
- relate to a programme that has been broadcast (and identify the date, time and channel)
- identify the broadcasting standard(s) which you consider have been breached
- be made within the required timeframe (usually 20 working days since broadcast).
If you are complaining to the broadcaster in the first instance, you need to make your complaint within 20 working days of the broadcast.
If you are referring your complaint to the BSA, you must refer your complaint to the BSA within 20 working days of receiving the broadcaster’s decision, or if the broadcaster did not respond, within 60 working days of the original broadcast.
For complaints regarding programmes that have not yet aired, see Can I complain about a programme that hasn’t aired yet?
Complaints referred to the BSA will generally be decided within 3 months. However, timeframes vary depending upon complexity, input required from the parties and whether the BSA considers it across 2 or more meetings. BSA staff will keep you informed of the progress of your complaint once it is submitted.
The complaints process is free of charge.