The aim of an investigation by our office is to help you and the public transport operator reach a fair and reasonable resolution to your public transport complaint.

Fair and reasonable outcomes depend on all the circumstances, relevant laws, codes and guidelines and good industry practice.

Types of outcomes

The types of outcomes we can achieve include:

  • A detailed explanation
  • An apology
  • Refunds, compensation or goodwill payments
  • Changes to public transport operator’s policies or procedures
  • Staff training or counselling
  • Commitment by the public transport operator to undertake corrective action

The individual circumstances of a person may influence the outcome of their complaint about public transport.  For example, a person relying on a mobility aid may be more impacted than a person without a mobility aid if a Melbourne tram service is terminated early at an inaccessible stop. 

Case Assessment

If your public transport complaint can’t be resolved through conciliation, we will undertake a case assessment to understand what is fair and reasonable in the circumstances.

If we don’t think the public transport operator’s response is fair, we will notify the operator and advise what we consider as a reasonable outcome to resolve the complaint.

If we believe the operator has acted reasonably, we will write to you and explain why we believe that.  If you disagree with the Public Transport Ombudsman’s assessment, the case will be reviewed by senior team members who will decide whether further investigation by the Public Transport Ombudsman is warranted. If we don’t think this is necessary, we will finalise the investigation into your public transport complaint. 

At all stages, you are invited to provide new and additional information that you think supports your complaint.

Binding decisions

If an agreed outcome can’t be reached and we feel there is action the member should take to resolve your complaint, the Public Transport Ombudsman can make a decision that is binding on the member. A binding decision can be up to the value of $5,000 or $10,000 with the agreement of the operator.