Individuals and other organisations can complain under the INSPIRE Regulations in the following areas. In each case, organisations other than the ICO are responsible for giving guidance to organisations. We have provided links to the appropriate bodies below, depending on the type of complaint.

Complaints about the application of INSPIRE technical standards

Under regulation 6 (metadata) and regulation 7 (network services), a user can complain to a public authority if they believe the required standards have not been met.

For more information about how to deal with complaints in this area, visit the DEFRA website.

Complaints about refusing access to data or services

Regulation 9 of the INSPIRE Regulations allows public authorities to limit access to spatial data sets or spatial data services in certain circumstances. If a user believes that information has been incorrectly withheld under regulation 9 they may make a complaint to the public authority. For more information about how to deal with complaints in this area, visit the DEFRA website.

If the user remains dissatisfied after receiving the public authority’s decision and reasoning for continuing to withhold the information under regulation 9 they may complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). See our page ‘What should I do if a complaint has been made to the ICO’.

Complaints about charging

The INSPIRE Regulations allow, under regulation 10, for public authorities to charge users for certain services in particular circumstances.
Guidance on charging under the INSPIRE Regulations is set out in the UK Location Data Sharing Operational Guidance Part 2 – Licensing and Charging.

Complaints about re-use

Complaints about re-use are subject to the complaints procedures as set out in the Re-use of Public Sector Information Regulations 2005 (PSI Regulations).

Complaints from public authorities about your data sharing arrangements

Under regulation 12(1) a public authority must enable other public authorities or relevant bodies to access spatial data sets or services.

The provision does not mention personal data but the ICO advises that public must still comply with the provisions of the Data Protection Act 1998 when sharing personal data. Public authorities should follow the Statutory Code of Practice on Data Sharing to decide if personal data can be shared.

For more information about dealing with complaints from other public authorities, see the DEFRA website.