Complaints against CSP members

This process explains what you should do if you have a concern or complaint about a member’s fitness to practise, the treatment or service they have offered you or their behaviour

Although CSP membership is not a legal requirement to work (although some employers do insist on membership), the majority of physiotherapists working in the United Kingdom are members of the CSP. This gives them ‘Chartered’ status.

Complaints – who does what?

The CSP may not be the appropriate body to deal with your complaint. It is not the regulator for the physiotherapy profession and as a result its powers are limited. The strongest sanction open to the Society is the removal of membership from an individual and/or referral to the regulator, the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).

Below is a list of who does what when it comes to complaints:

Professional conduct or fitness to practise matters.

The Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC,) as the regulatory body, handles complaints concerning the professional conduct and performance or fitness to practice of a physiotherapy registrant. Email them at

If your concern refers to the professional competence of a physiotherapist, physiotherapy support worker or student you will need to contact their employer or university. They will have their own process in place and will be able to deal with any concerns you may have.

Service received from a physiotherapist

If you are dissatisfied with the standard of service you received from a physiotherapist working in the NHS you should contact the Patients Advice and Liaison Service (PALS). PALS can help resolve concerns or problems you have experienced and can help if you wish to make a complaint. 

If you are dissatisfied with the service you received from a private physiotherapist you will need to contact the practice where you were treated as they will have their own complaints process.

Reputation of the CSP

The CSP is responsible for maintaining and protecting the reputation of the Society. If a CSP member has acted in a way to damage public trust or confidence in the Society (including on social media), please email and we will look into it. However, we can only take action if there is an issue to pursue against someone.

If this type of complaint is upheld, sanctions open to the CSP include:

  • providing advice to the member
  • limiting CSP services to the member
  • removing membership.

The CSP cannot stop a member’s ability to practise. We routinely review the outcomes of HCPC fitness to practise hearings and any CSP member who has been struck off the HCPC register will have their CSP membership terminated.

We do not provide mediation or arbitration services between CSP members and patients or between members or get involved in business or private disputes involving members.

The CSP complaints procedure is not for:
  • contesting decisions on admission to membership of the CSP
  • making claims for damages arising out of policy decisions by the CSP or contesting those policy decisions
  • investigating grievances raised by CSP employees
  • investigating complaints about the CSP made by CSP staff, whether members or not
  • complaints about applications for subject access under the Data Protection Act 2018
  • the activities of organisations affiliated to the CSP, e.g. clinical interest and occupational groups
  • rehearing complaints previously dealt with by the CSP under former procedures.


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