Code of Conduct

Complaints procedure

This complaints procedure applies where a publisher wishes to make a complaint about any aspect of PLS’s dealings with that publisher, including failure to adhere to this Code of Conduct.

This procedure does not apply to:

  • the interpretation of copyright law;
  • the licence tariffs quoted or charged by CLA or NLA or any other matter that is within the jurisdiction of the Copyright Tribunal; or
  • vexatious or unjustified complaints.

 

Our employees are fully aware of the procedures for handling complaints and resolving disputes in accordance with this complaints procedure and will always explain those procedures to publishers, licensees and the general public in plain English. We will provide all reasonable assistance to complainants when forming and lodging a complaint, and will make adequate resources available for the purpose of responding to complaints. We will aim to deal with and resolve all complaints within four months of the complaint being sent to us in accordance with the procedures set out below:

1) The publisher should send its complaint in writing, together with any supporting evidence, to PLS at the address on the PLS website and marked ‘PLS Complaints’, or by email to plscomplaints@pls.org.uk. We will  acknowledge letters and emails within two working days of receipt, and we will endeavour to provide a substantive response in writing within a further ten working days. We will advise the publisher within this ten day period if we will not be able to resolve the matter within such timescale and of the likely time it will take us to respond in full.

2) If the publisher remains dissatisfied with the response it should write to the Chief Executive of PLS at the address on the PLS website. Letters will be acknowledged within five working days of receipt and the Chief Executive will either:

  • undertake to send a further response in writing after appropriate advice has been taken, with an indication of the timescale within which the publisher can expect that further response; or
  • confirm in writing the original decision and that it is PLS’s final decision, and notify the publisher of its right to refer the matter to an independent reviewer.


Independent reviewer
If we have advised the publisher of our final decision under the complaints procedure outlined above and the publisher is not satisfied with our decision, the publisher may send its complaint in writing, together with any supporting evidence, to the following independent reviewer:

Ombudsman Services
The Brew House
Wilderspool Park
Greenall’s Avenue
Warrington
WA4 6HL

Ombudsman Services will not deal with a complaint about a matter which:

  • concerns or relates to the licence tariffs quoted or charged by CLA or NLA or any other matter that is within the jurisdiction of the Copyright Tribunal;
  • concerns a dispute which is the subject of court action by either party, unless that action has been suspended pending referral to, and decision from, the Ombudsman;
  • has, substantially, previously been the subject of a decision by Ombudsman Services: Copyright Licensing; or
  • appears to the Ombudsman to be vexatious or unjustified.

 

PLS will bear the proper costs and charges incurred by Ombudsman Services in relation to any complaint that the Ombudsman agrees to deal with. Ombudsman Services shall be the final arbiter of any complaint referred in accordance with this complaints procedure. If the publisher accepts the decision of Ombudsman Services we will recommend to the PLS Board that such decision be implemented as soon as practicable.