79 Boulcott Street,
P O Box 10 675,
(04) 472 7852 or
0800 ADHELP (0800 234357)
(04) 471 1785
How to Make a Complaint - ASCB
Any person can complain about any advertisement in any media which
they consider to be in breach of the Codes.
The complaints procedure is simple.
Complaints should be addressed to the Secretary, Advertising Standards
Complaints Board, PO Box 10-675, Wellington. Complaints should be in
writing, dated and signed by the complainant. Complaints can also be made
using the online complaints form at www.asa.co.nz. Where the complaint
involves a print advertisement, a copy of the advertisement should be
included. Where a television or radio advertisement is the subject of a
complaint, the approximate time, date and station of broadcast should be
The Chairperson will determine whether the complaint is suitable for the
Board’s consideration and within the Board’s jurisdiction. If it is, the complaint
will be sent to all parties concerned seeking their opinion and comments
and you will be advised. If it is not, you and other parties will be advised and
shortly after a formal written decision will be distributed to you, the other
parties and to the media.
If a complainant does proceed, then the Board will then determine whether the
Codes of Practice have been breached and all parties will be informed of the
outcome. A formal written decision is distributed to you, the parties and to the
In lodging a complaint with the Complaints Board the complainant accepts that
he/she will not pursue the complaint in any other forum and is required to sign
a waiver to that effect.
Please note a copy of your complaint, including your contact details, is
provided to the other parties as part of the process. However, any contact with
you will be via the Complaints Board. Your first initial and surname is included
in the written decision.
If a complaint is upheld by the Board the advertiser, in accordance with selfregulatory
principles, is requested to voluntarily immediately withdraw the
advertisement. Additionally the media are similarly requested not to publish or
broadcast an advertisement which has been held by the Board to be in breach
of the Codes of Practice. The requests are invariably followed.
Decisions of the Complaints Board may be appealed to the Advertising
Standards Complaints Appeal Board on certain grounds. The main grounds
are new evidence, the rules of natural justice were not followed, and the
Decision was against the weight of evidence. All Rulings of the Chairperson of
the Complaints Board are appealable to the Chairperson of the Appeal Board.
Full details on appeals are available from the Secretary to the Complaints
Board. Appeals must be made to the Secretary of the Complaints Board within
14 days of receipt of the written Decision.