Instructions for complainants

Anyone can file a complaint with the Chancellor of Justice  if they feel that a Finnish authority or other public official has acted in an unlawful manner or has failed to fulfil their responsibilities.

Complaints must be filed in writing. You can file a complaint written in free form by email or letter. Handwritten complaints must be clearly legible.

Complaints emailed to the registry's address are transmitted via the public Internet.  If your complaint includes confidential information, you can use a secure email connection.

Do not send confidential or sensitive information in a regular email. These include information about:

  • income, wealth or taxation
  • state of health
  • client relationship with social welfare services

If you wish, you can send attachments containing such information via secure email or by post.

To send secure email to the Office of the Chancellor of Justice, use the Government’s secure email service at

When sending secure email, the sender must register their email address with the secure email service. A link used to access the service is sent to the registered email address. In the service, any content and attachments added to the secure message are appropriately encrypted.

How to send secure email:

1. On your browser, go to the page to register to the secure email service (

2. Enter your email address in the From field.

3. Select Continue and Register. An authentication link is sent to the email address. Once you are registered, you can use the service to send secure emails.

By law, the sender is responsible for messages containing sensitive or confidential information (Finnish Act on Electronic Services and Communication in the Public Sector section 8, 13/2003).

You can also submit written complaints in person by visiting the Government’s distribution centre at Ritarikatu 2 B, 00170 Helsinki. The distribution centre is open from Monday to Friday at 8.00 am to 4.15 pm. Please note that at the distribution centre, you can only submit a ready, written complaint. It is not possible to write a complaint or receive legal advice at the distribution centre.

The letter of complaint should include whom and what the complaint concerns The complaint must include the complainant’s name and contact information. Your contact information are needed to send a response to the complaint and any other documents. In your complaint, include any decisions and other documents relevant to the matter. Attachments sent to the Office of the Chancellor of Justice in printed format will be returned to the complainant with the Office’s decision.

The Chancellor of Justice does not handle complaints that concern a matter that is more than two years old, unless there are special grounds to do so. You will be notified without delay if your complaint cannot be handled for this reason. You will also be notified if the matter falls beyond the scope of the authority of the Chancellor of Justice. You will also be notified if the matter cannot be handled by the Office of the Chancellor of Justice because it is currently under consideration by a competent authority, or still open to appeal.

The Chancellor of Justice may forward the handling of a complaint to a competent authority if there are grounds for this based on the nature of the matter. In this case, you will be notified about the transfer.

Decisions issued about complaints cannot be appealed. The handling of complaints is free of charge.