How to lodge a complaint

A complaint must be submitted in writing. A specific form may be used, which may also serve as a check-list for a complainant as regards the type of information that should be submitted. Supporting documentary evidence, if available, should be attached to the complaint, including copies of relevant correspondence with the national authorities of the relevant EFTA State.

The complaint should be as complete and accurate as possible and particular emphasis should be given to the following elements:

  • the facts complained of in relation to the EFTA State in question
  • any steps that a complainant has already taken (at any level)
  • the provisions of EEA law which the complainant considers have been infringed


ESA's working language is English. However, individuals and economic operators are entitled to address ESA in any of the 25 official languages of the EFTA States and the EU. However, complaining in languages other than English may slow down the handling of a complaint.


Complainants must indicate whether they wish their complaint to be treated in a confidential or a non-confidential manner. Failure to do so will mean that ESA will presume that the complainant has opted for non-confidential treatment. Even where a complaint is treated as confidential, disclosure by ESA of a complainant's identity may in some cases be indispensable. A complainant would be informed of that in advance. 

National remedies

Lodging a complaint with ESA represents only one possible option for seeking redress. National courts and administrative bodies are primarily responsible for ensuring that the EFTA States comply with EEA law.

If a complainant considers a particular national measure to be incompatible with the EEA law, they should consider possible remedies before national administrative and/or judicial authorities. Such remedies might be employed either instead of or in parallel with a complaint to ESA. National remedies may enable a complainant to assert/protect their rights more directly and quickly than through a complaint to ESA.

Other EEA Institutions

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