1. Introduction
The Office of the Planning Regulator (OPR) was established by Government to ensure that public interest is at the heart of Ireland’s planning system by overseeing the continuous enhancement of Ireland’s planning process and its outcomes.

This charter is a statement of the standards of service our customers can expect from the OPR. The purpose of this Charter is to communicate our customer commitments and the standards we have in place to help achieve these commitments.

The OPR has three primary areas of statutory function:
I. the independent evaluation of all statutory forward planning;
II. examination of the systems and procedures used by local authorities and An Bord Pleanála to perform their statutory planning functions; and
III. driving national research, training, education and public information programmes.

The OPR’s Strategy Statement sets out our purpose, our vision for the organisation and the values that underpin their achievement.

2. Our Purpose
Our purpose is to oversee the continuous enhancement of Ireland’s planning process and its outcomes by driving the co-ordination of planning policy implementation across national, regional and local levels, building a stronger knowledge base and ensuring regular planning reviews of the performance of local authorities and An Bord Pleanála.

3. Our Vision
Our vision is one of Ireland benefiting from a well-coordinated planning hierarchy that is promoted through a culture of continuous improvement in the planning sector and underpinned by an effective programme of education, training and research.

4. Our Values
Our values are:
• Independence
• Professionalism
• Transparency
• Engagement
• Customer Focus

5. Our customer commitments
The OPR is committed to delivering fair, effective, courteous and timely services to all its customers in line with the Government’s twelve ‘Guiding Principles for Quality Customer Service’ .

We will deal with customers without discrimination or prejudice respecting equality and human rights in accordance with Public Sector Duty principles and equality legislation. We will accommodate diversity in providing services to our customers.

The OPR will be responsive to customer requirements and proactive in identifying where we can make improvements to our service.

6. Our service standards
The OPR is committed to delivering fair, effective, courteous and timely services to all our customers. The standards of service that customers are entitled to expect from us are set out below.

6.1 Letter / email correspondence from the public
From the date of receipt of written / email correspondence, the OPR aims to:
• acknowledge your correspondence within five working days;
• issue a full reply within 21 working days;
• If a full reply cannot be provided within 21 working days, we will write to you to explain why and when you can expect a full reply;
• ensure that all correspondence we send to you contains contact details, including the name the official dealing with your correspondence and a telephone number and an email address;
• use automated email responses, with alternative contact details, when out of the office; and,
• respond to your written correspondence in clear plain language, free, wherever possible, from jargon and technical terms.

6.2 Telephone contact from the public
The OPR’s main telephone number will always be staffed between 9:00am to 1:00pm and 2:00pm to 4:00pm, Monday to Friday with the exception of public holidays. Though an immediate answer cannot be guaranteed, enquiries may also be answered outside of these core hours.

In responding to telephone enquiries the OPR will:
• answer the telephone promptly and politely, providing the name of the official answering;
• seek to provide appropriate guidance straight away, but where this is not possible we will take your details and inform you when to expect to hear from us again; and,
• in circumstances where it is necessary to transfer your call, advise you of the reason for the transfer and will identify the business-area and / or official to whom you are being transferred. The transferring of calls will be kept to a minimum.

6.3 Visitors to the Office
The OPR does not operate a public walk-in office or counter service, however, where customers require a face-to-face meeting, such meetings may be arranged by appointment and at the discretion of the OPR. If you are meeting us for a face-to-face meeting by appointment the OPR will:
• meet you at an agreed time;
• treat you with courtesy, respect and impartiality;
• ensure that an appropriate level of privacy is provided; and,
• keep our public meeting spaces clean and tidy, ensuring that they meet health and safety standards.

6.4 Service through Irish
The OPR will take all reasonable steps to assist people who wish to carry out their business with us through Irish as follows:
• correspondence received in Irish will be answered in Irish;
• key documents will be published in both Irish and English;
• an Irish version of our website will mirror, as far as practicable, the main version; and,
• comply with our obligations under the Official Languages Act.

6.5 Equality and Diversity
We will engage and support our customers without discrimination or prejudice, in accordance with the Public Sector Equality and Human Rights Duty and equality and disability legislation obligations. We will reasonably accommodate diversity in the provision of services to our customers. In doing so, the OPR will be responsive to customer requirements and proactive in identifying where we can make improvements to our services.

6.6 Access
Where face-to-face or virtual meetings, by appointment, are required, the OPR will ensure ease of access for people with disabilities or specific needs. The OPR will also ensure that sign language interpretation services are provided to customers where necessary.

Any queries that customers may have in relation to disability issues or physical access can be directed to our Access Officer who can be contacted by telephone (01 854 6700), email ( or letter.

6.7 Privacy
The OPR fully respects your right to privacy. Any of your personal data which is held by the OPR will be treated with the highest standards of security and confidentiality, in accordance with data protection legislation.

7. Customer Service Complaints
The OPR is committed to dealing with all complaints promptly, fairly and impartially. The OPR is committed to the provision of a quality service. As such, you have a right to complain if you feel the service provided does not meet the standards set out in this charter. If we get something wrong, we will apologise and will try to put things right. We also aim to learn from any mistakes and use the information we gain to improve our service.

If you are dissatisfied with the service provided to you by the OPR you may direct a formal complaint to the Quality Customer Service Officer in writing via email ( or letter using the heading ‘Customer Service Complaint’.

The OPR will acknowledge written or emailed complaints within five working days of receipt and will endeavour to respond within 21 working days of receipt; if further enquiries are necessary we will write to you to let you know and keep you informed of progress.

If you are not satisfied with the Quality Customer Service Officer’s consideration of your complaint you may request that the OPR review the decision. An internal review involves a complete reconsideration of the matter by a more senior member of staff, who may uphold or change the original decision made.

We guarantee that your complaint will not affect how we treat you in the future.

8. Our Expectations of You
As our customer, you also have an important role to play in helping us offer you the best service. By doing the following, you can greatly assist us to provide the optimum service to you:
• provide accurate information – to assist swift the progression of the OPR’s consideration of any matter, copies of all relevant documents should be provided to the OPR;
• where available, quote appropriate reference numbers in all correspondence;
• provide contact details, including a daytime telephone number or email address;
• provide feedback – the OPR is committed to consulting with our customers and to evaluating our services all comments or suggestions regarding the service you receive will be considered; and,
• co-operate with OPR officials and treat officials with the same courtesy you would expect to receive. It is not acceptable in any circumstances to harass officials or use aggressive, abusive, racist or threatening language in written or other forms. Any behaviour that is disruptive to the delivery of quality customer service may result in the permanent termination of contact.

9. Feedback
We welcome your comments, suggestions and views on any aspect of our service.


Telephone: 01 854 6700

Written: Fourth Floor, Park House, Grangegorman, 191-193A North Circular Road, Dublin 7, D07 EWV4 /


(Our contact details will be kept up-to-date on the ‘Contact Us’ page of the website)

Customer Service Action Plan
The OPR has also published a Customer Service Action Plan which sets out the steps that we will take to deliver on the commitments and standards set out in the Customer Charter.

Provision of Information to Members of the Oireachtas
The OPR has arrangements in place in relation to requests for information from Oireachtas members.