Available in Russian
Author: Vadim Gabrielov
Keywords: ombudsman; human rights commissioners; tendencies of the development of the institution of ombudsman; the United Kingdom; Great Britain
This scientific article explores the features and tendencies of the development of the institution of ombudsman in the United Kingdom. The relevance of the issues this article deals with lies in the process of development of this institution in many countries, its transformation and evolution. Assessment of its effectiveness and its possible development requires studying the practices of the countries in which this institution has undergone considerable development but still continues to evolve. In this regard, the experience of the United Kingdom appears to be very valuable, as the institution of ombudsman in this country is an established and rapidly developing human rights protection mechanism. However, in Russian constitutional and legal science, a comprehensive analysis of the institution of ombudsman in the United Kingdom has not yet been conducted. One of the aims of this article is to fill this gap. This article focuses on the following types of ombudsman: Parliamentary Commissioner for Administration, Health Service Commissioner, Legal Ombudsman, Financial Ombudsman, Pensions Ombudsman, Housing Ombudsman and Furniture Ombudsman. The author analyses the Acts of Parliament, secondary legislation and acts of self-regulation which regulate the legal status and activity of these ombudsmen. Furthermore, the author analyses annual reports and accounts of the ombudsmen which allow conclusions to be drawn about the effectiveness of their activity. The author draws the conclusion, after studying the British model of the institution of ombudsman, that there is a trend in the UK to separate the institution of ombudsman from the UK Parliament. The UK Parliament has not resisted this tendency and has delegated its authority to other governmental bodies, agencies, and officials to regulate the status of the ombudsmen, leading to the tendency of implementing legal regulation of their activities through various levels of legislation. Besides, the institution of ombudsman in the UK is a popular and highly effective way of dispute resolution that allows the parties to reach agreement and avoid litigation. Ombudsmen often act as independent mediators and do not impose binding decisions on the parties unless the parties are unable to reach an agreement on the subject matter of the proceedings.
About the author: Vadim Gabrielov – Graduate student, Higher School of Law and Administration of the Higher School of Economics, Moscow, Russia.
Citation: Gabrielov V. (2022) Institut ombudsmena v Soedinyonnom Korolevstve: osobennosti i tendentsii razvitiya [The institution of ombudsman in the United Kingdom: features and tendencies of its development]. Sravnitel’noe konstitutsionnoe obozrenie, vol. 31, no. 2, pp. 147–171. (In Russian).
Bradford B., Creutzfeldt N. (2018) Procedural Justice in Alternative Dispute Resolution: Fairness Judgments Among Users of Financial Ombudsman Services in Germany and the United Kingdom. Journal of European Consumer and Market Law, vol. 7, no. 5, pp. 188–200.
Buck T., Kirkham R., Thompson B. (2016) The Ombudsman Enterprise and Administrative Justice, London: Routledge.
Buzenkova O.Yu., Sungurov A.Yu. (2017) Institut Upolnomochennogo po pravam cheloveka v RF i sub'ekte RF: razvitie normativnoy osnovy ikh deyatel'nosti i vzaimodeystviya [The Institution of Commissioner for Human Rights in the Russian Federation and the Subjects of the Russian Federation: Development of a Regulatory Framework for Their Activities and Cooperation]. Vestnik Mariyskogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta. Seriya “Istoricheskie nauki. Yuridicheskie nauki”, no. 4, pp. 47–53. (In Russian).
Carroll A. (2017) Constitutional and Administrative Law, Harlow: Pearson Education Limited.
Creutzfeldt N. (2016) What Do We Expect from an Ombudsman? Narratives of Everyday Engagement with the Informal Justice System in Germany and the UK. International Journal of Law in Context, vol. 12, no. 4, pp. 437–452.
Galyautdinov B.S. (2014) Pravovaya priroda instituta Upolnomochennogo po pravam cheloveka (ombudsmena) v Rossiyskoy Federatsii [The Legal Nature of the Institution of the Commissioner for Human Rights (Ombudsman) in the Russian Federation]. Vestnik Penzenskogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta, no. 2, pp. 40–47. (In Russian).
Kornilov R.B. (2019) Istoriya sozdaniya instituta ombudsmena v mire [History of Establishment of the Institution of Ombudsman in the World]. In: Obrazovatel'naya sistema: voprosy teorii i praktiki: sbornik nauchnykh trudov [Educational system: issues of theory and practice: a collection of scientific papers], Kazan: OOO “SitIvent”, pp. 82–85. (In Russian).
Maer L., Priddy S. (2018) The Parliamentary Ombudsman: Role and Proposals for Reform. Parliament. Briefing Paper. Available at: https://researchbriefings.files.parliament.uk/documents/CBP-7496/CBP-7496.pdf (accessed: 03.04.2022).
Orfield L.B. (1966) The Scandinavian Ombudsman. Administrative Law Review, vol. 19, no. 1, pp. 7–74.
Parpworth N. (2012) Constitutional and Administrative Law, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Seneviratne M. (2005) Researching Ombudsmen. In: Banakar R., Travers M. (eds.) Theory and Method in Socio-Legal Research, London: Bloomsbury Publishing, pp. 142–152.
Shamrin M.Yu. (2015) Administrativno-pravovoy status Upolnomochennogo po pravam rebyonka: istoriko-teoreticheskiy aspect: monografiya [The administrative and legal status of the Commissioner for Children’s Rights: a historical and theoretical perspective: a monograph], Tula: Izdatel'stvo Tul'skogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta. (In Russian).
Shamrin M.Yu. (2020) Institut detskogo ombudsmena v Rossii, Shotlandii i Yamayke: sravnitel'no-pravovoy analiz: monografiya [The institution of the children’s ombudsman in Russia, Scotland and Jamaica: a comparative legal analysis: a monograph], Moscow: Prospekt. (In Russian).
Stacey F. (1971) The British Ombudsman, Oxford: Clarendon Press.
Tkharkakho M.M. (2008) Osobennosti formirovaniya instituta ombudsmena v zarubezhnykh stranakh [Features of the establishment of the institution of ombudsman in foreign countries]. Vestnik Adygeyskogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta, no. 2, pp. 228–231. (In Russian).
Timofeev M.T. (2006) Institut ombudsmana v Velikobritanii i Irlandii. Kontrol', osnovannyy na sotrudnichestve [The institution of ombudsman in the United Kingdom and Ireland. Cooperative Control], Moscow: Novaya yustitsiya. (In Russian).
Volkov N.A. (2009) Vozniknovenie i osobennosti funktsionirovaniya instituta upolnomochennykh po pravam cheloveka (ombudsmanov) v zarubezhnykh stranakh [Origins and features of the activity of the institution of human rights commissioners (ombudsmen) in foreign countries]. Srednerusskiy vestnik obshchestvennykh nauk, no. 3, p3–99. (In Russian).