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Filing a Complaint

The Office for the Deaf & Hard of Hearing administers the Sign Language Interpreter & Transliterator State Registration Act. ODHH maintains a list of state and provisionally-registered interpreters, educates Pennsylvanians about the act, and enforces the act. One way ODHH enforces the act is by investigating complaints.

Complaints

Any individual or organization can file a complaint against an interpreter who they feel may have violated the act. ODHH receives complaints from individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing, their family members on their behalf, or interpreters.
 
All complaints are kept confidential and the complainant’s name is not given to the interpreter. However, specific information such as date and location is provided to the interpreter.
 
ODHH has the authority to investigate alleged violations of the act, but not possible ethical violations. If ODHH receives a complaint that does not fall under our jurisdiction, staff refers and gives options to the complainant. In addition, if a complaint has insufficient or inaccurate information, ODHH may not be able to open an investigation. If this occurs, the complainant is notified.

The Complaint Process

Each complaint is unique; however, ODHH has a procedure and guidelines that applies to all complaints.
 
Procedure & Guidelines:
  • Upon receipt of a complaint, staff reviews and determines the steps to conduct the investigation.
  • Once the investigation begins, the complainant receives a notification letter via email or mail.
  • The interpreter is notified of the complaint and is asked to furnish additional information.
    • The interpreter has 30 days to respond.
  • If provided, ODHH may contact the witnesses.
  • ODHH and Department Labor & Industry's legal counsel reviews the information and makes a determination.
  • The complainant and interpreter are notified of the decision and outcome via email or mail.
If you suspect an interpreter may have violated the act, complete the complaint form and submit it to ODHH. The form is available in 2 formats: electronically or paper.

Questions

If you have questions about the act or possible violations, contact ODHH at odhh@pa.gov, or 717-783-4912 v/tty or 717-831-1928 videophone.