My ambition is to support the EU institutions in becoming more effective, transparent and accountable by strategically increasing the visibility and impact of the work of the European Ombudsman.

Emily O'Reilly, 30 June 2014

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60th Rome Treaty anniversaryYour Europe - The portal to on-line European and national public services

European Network of Ombudsmen Conference 2017

The annual European Network of Ombudsmen 2017 conference took place on 19 and 20 June.  Videos of the four sessions covering 'populism' in the EU; Brexit and citizens' rights; open governance;  and current and future challenges for Ombudsmen ...

Ombudsman's Annual Report 2016

The European Ombudsman, Emily O'Reilly, has launched her Annual Report for 2016. Concerns about transparency in the EU administration accounted for the biggest proportion of the cases

Ombudsman launches list of Dos & Don’ts to help EU officials deal with lobbyists

The European Ombudsman, Emily O'Reilly, has published practical advice for EU officials on interacting with interest representatives.

Ombudsman urges appropriate Brexit transparency

The European Ombudsman has asked the European Commission to ensure transparency during the upcoming Brexit negotiations

Ombudsman asks nine questions on handling of Commissioners’ post-mandate jobs

European Ombudsman, Emily O'Reilly, has asked the Commission to reply to nine questions about the role of its Ad Hoc Ethical Committee and how the Commission deals with the post-mandate activities of Commissioners, including its ...

Lodge a complaintRequest for information

What we do

The European Ombudsman investigates complaints about maladministration in the institutions and bodies of the European Union.

If you are a citizen of a Member State of the Union or reside in a Member State, you can make a complaint to the European Ombudsman. Businesses, associations or other bodies with a registered office in the Union may also complain to the Ombudsman.

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Who we are

Emily O'Reilly took office as European Ombudsman on 1 October 2013.

She is the former National Ombudsman of Ireland and National information Commissioner of Ireland (2003-2013), and an award-winning political editor, broadcaster, and author.

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The institution has a highly qualified, multilingual staff.

This means that we can deal with your complaint in your language as one of the 24 EU languages that we work in. We are committed to making our service fully accessible to people with disabilities.

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How it works

Who can turn to the European Ombudsman?

Citizens, NGOs, associations, businesses, universities, journalists...

  • With complaints concerning an EU institution, office or agency
  • Who have already tried to solve the problem with the EU body concerned
  • When the issue is not over two years old
  • Where there is no other legal action underway

The Ombudsman can help with

  • Unfair treatment by EU bodies
  • Problems with EU tenders/contracts
  • Late payments from EU funds
  • Refused access to documents
  • Delays in dealings with EU bodies
  • Undisclosed or improper lobbying

What can the Ombudsman do?

  • Follow-up your complaint with the EU body
  • Help find a fair solution to your problem
  • Issue recommendations to EU bodies
  • Inspect EU documents

How to contact the Ombudsman?

  • You can contact the Ombudsman in the 24 official EU languages
  • Fill out the easy online complaint form
how to contact the ombudsman

What's new?

  • 20 September 2017
    • Correspondence -
      Reply from the European Medicines Agency (EMA) to the Ombudsman's strategic inquiry OI/7/2017/KR into pre-submission activities organised by EMA.
    • Speech -
      Address to ICIC on the future of transparency and access to information
  • 13 September 2017
    • Press release -
      Ombudsman welcomes proposals to strengthen Commissioner ethics and transparency rules
  • 08 September 2017
    • Correspondence -
      Reply from First Vice President Timmermans to the European Ombudsman concerning suggestions for improvement of the European Citizens Initiative procedure
  • 06 September 2017
    • Case opened -
      The European Commission’s handling of a request for prolongation of part-time work as a reasonable accommodation for a seriously ill staff member
  • 30 August 2017
    • Correspondence -
      Reply from the Council to the Ombudsman's strategic inquiry OI/2/2017/AB on access to documents relating to Council preparatory bodies when discussing draft EU legislative acts
  • 29 August 2017
    • Event -
      Visit to Copenhagen and Aarhus (24/09/2017)
  • 08 August 2017
    • Case opened -
      The Council’s refusal, following a request from an MEP, to give public access to the opinion of its Legal Service concerning an interinstitutional agreement on a Transparency Register
    • Case opened -
      The European Commission’s handling of a request for access to documents on salary data for civil servants in the Member States of the EU
    • Case opened -
      The Commission’s handling of a request from AccessInfo Europe to give public access to the opinions of its Legal Service concerning the transparency register