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The Association has three categories of membership:


Ombudsman membership is open to ombudsman schemes which meet the published criteria in the Association’s Terms and Rules, (essentially: independence of the Ombudsman from those whom the Ombudsman has the power to investigate; effectiveness; fairness; openness and transparency and public accountability).

Complaint Handler

Complaint Handler membership is open to escalated complaint-handling schemes and organisations which meet the requirements for such membership published in the Association’s Terms and Rules. 

Associate Membership

(Corporate and Individual) is open to organisations such as consumer bodies, professional companies and trade associations, and to individuals who are interested in and support the objects of the Association and have significant relevant expertise.

Please contact the Chief Executive before submitting a membership application to discuss further which category of membership might be most appropriate.


OA Terms and Rules (Sept 2023)
DOC 94.5 KB
Guidance from the Board to the Validation Committee (Sept 2023)
DOCX 88.14 KB
Ombudsman Member application form (Sept 2023)
DOCX 91.4 KB
CH Member application and re-validation form (May 2024).
DOCX 87.85 KB
Associate Members - application form (Sept 2023)
Application form notes
DOC 71.5 KB
2024-25 OA Membership Fees
DOCX 25.45 KB