Defense Media Activity

U.S. Department of Defense

OFFICE OF THE INSPECTOR GENERAL

FILING IG COMPLAINTS


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Individuals requesting assistance complete an Inspector General Action Request Form, (DMA Form 20), prior to seeing the IG. You may download the form and hand carry it, mail it or fax it to the OIG. If the requester contacts the IG telephonically, the DMA Form 20 is completed by the IG taking the call. The information on this form provides the IG with the initial base of knowledge to begin an inquiry. Should you elect to file your complaint anonymously, note that it will be impossible for the IG to get back with you on findings. You may reveal your identity to the IG and request anonymity.

Download Inspector General Action Request PDF

See the instructions below on how to properly fill out this form:

  1. Enter your complete name as shown in your official records (Unless you wish to remain anonymous).
  2. Enter your current rank (Unless you wish to remain anonymous).
  3. Enter your SSN (Unless you wish to remain anonymous *Be sure and read the Privacy Act Information above this block).
  4. Enter your duty phone number and any other appropriate contact numbers (Unless you wish to remain anonymous).
  5. Enter your complete military or civilian mailing address (Unless you wish to remain anonymous).
  6. Ask yourself, "What do I want the IG to do for me?" Please be brief and to the point.
  7. Collect your notes and thoughts and write all relevant information to your issue in this location. Feel free to use continuation sheets if necessary. Keep in mind, you should have the information relevant to your issue orderly and as thorough as possible before seeing an IG. This will help us help you better.
  8. Enter the date you sign the form.
  9. Please sign the form, only if you are not requesting to submit an issue anonymously.
NOTE: Once you complete DMA Form 20 it becomes an official IG record and must be handled accordingly. If you have questions concerning IG information sensitivity or DMA Form 20 you may consult the DMA OIG.
  1. Be sure you have a problem, not just a personal peeve. (Are the cooks routinely turning out lousy chow or was it just one bad meal?)
  2. Give your chain of command or supervisory chain a chance to solve the problem. (Although not required, you are encouraged to discuss your issue(s) with your chain of command prior to consulting with the OIG. Often the IG will address the issue with the chain of command for resolution).
  3. Keep in mind that IGs will review policy and compliance with policy, but do not make policy.
  4. If IG assistance is needed, contact the DMA IG at dmaig@dma.mil.
  5. Be honest and don’t provide misleading information. (IGs will discover the truth quickly in most cases and there are penalties for knowingly providing false information.)
  6. Keep in mind that IGs can only recommend, not order a resolution. (Only the Director can order; the role of the IG is to advise the Director.)
  7. Remember IGs can only resolve a case on the basis of fact. (A claim that rules have been violated doesn’t make it a fact. Claims must be supported with evidence.)
  8. Don’t expect instant action on your request...Be patient. (Investigations and inquiries take time, and IGs tend to have heavy workloads.)
  9. Be prepared for an outcome that may or may not meet your expectations but know that the IG will be thorough, objective, fair, impartial, and independent.

The following issues and allegations are ordinarily not appropriate for IG intervention:

  • Criminal allegations
  • Issues that have other means of redress (If the appropriate redress procedures were used, IGs will advise complainants that IG involvement focuses on ensuring that the complainant received due process and the protection of rights as intended by law and regulation)
    • Courts-martial actions
    • Nonjudicial punishment
    • Officer evaluation reports
    • Non-Commissioned Officer evaluation reports
    • Enlisted reductions
    • Type of discharge received
    • Pending or requested discharge
    • Complaints that a commanding officer has wronged a soldier
    • Financial liability investigations of property loss
    • Relief for cause
    • Adverse information filed in personnel records (except for allegations of reprisal)
    • Claims
  • The issue is not DoD related
  • Military Member Equal Opportunity complaints
  • Civilian allegations of reprisals
  • Department of Defense civilian employee redress through other channels
  • Hazardous work conditions
    • Equal Employment Opportunity
    • Collective bargaining agreements
    • Appeals of adverse actions within the purview of 5 USC 7701-7703

Anyone (military, federal civilian employee, contractor, family member, retiree) may file an IG complaint.

  • Note that some complaints (e.g., discrimination, sexual harassment, and conditions of employment) must be addressed by agencies other than the IG. If such complaints are brought to the IG, the IG will assist in directing you to the appropriate agency/system of redress.
  • IGs will address complaints regarding agency processes and systems of redress, and waste, fraud, and abuse allegations.
  • It is always best for the actual "victim" or person who witnessed the alleged wrongdoing to file the complaint, rather than a third party.
  • Unsure if you should file a complaint….contact the IG for guidance.

The DMA Office of the Inspector General (OIG) makes it convenient to file a complaint. The links provided below are designed to aid you in deciding if an IG complaint is appropriate and, if so, how to file a complaint. The amount and detail of the information you provide to the IG is up to you. However, if you do not provide enough information, it may be impossible to refer, respond to, or investigate your complaint or provide the assistance that you request.

It will greatly expedite the processing of your request for assistance or the investigatory actions taken to resolve your allegations of wrongdoing, if you identify to the IG exactly what you would like the IG system to do for you. Also, if you provide the IG with a list of witnesses, copies of any hard evidence or written documentation that you have to support your case and a list of other offices/agencies you have contacted regarding your issues when you contact the IG, it will greatly assist in the resolution of your issues.

  • Fraud, mismanagement, gross waste of funds, or abuse of authority
  • Violations of law, rules, or regulations
  • A substantial and specific danger to the public health and safety involving DMA or other element of DoD
  • Complaints of improper mental health evaluation referrals of members of the US Armed Forces
  • Complaints of reprisal for making disclosures protected by statute
    • If there is an established process for redress or established grievance channel, attempt to resolve the issue through that avenue before addressing it with the IG.
    • The complaint subject must be a DoD / DMA program or person.
    • Attempt to resolve issues at the lowest possible level and through the chain of command/supervision if at all possible.
    • Note that disagreements with a supervisor(s) over management styles and "personality conflicts", do not usually constitute an injustice or mismanagement.
    • If you are not sure your concern is a reportable matter, contact your local IG office for guidance or advice.
  • When attempts to resolve the issue through established redress or grievance systems fail
  • When the complaint is with your chain of command or supervisory chain
  • When the issue involves senior leadership within the organization
  • When the matter relates to the promotion of economy and efficiency or the prevention and detection of fraud, waste, and abuse within DoD
  • While protecting confidentiality is a priority concern for the IG, it cannot be absolutely guaranteed.  It may be breached if required by law or regulation,  or by the direction of the DoD Inspector General. 
  • Persons who ask the IG for help, make a complaint, give evidence, contact or assist an IG during an inspection or investigation, otherwise interact with an IG have an expectation of confidentiality. 
  • This expectation encompasses safeguarding of personal identity and the nature of contact with the IG. 
  • When a person requests anonymity, the IG will take extensive measures to protect the person's identity. 
  • The intent behind this emphasis on confidentiality is to protect individual privacy, maintain confidence in the IG System, and minimize the risk of reprisal.
  • With a supervisor or commander in your chain of command
  • Within the established grievance channel if one exists
  • With the Office of the Inspector General
  • Fraud, waste and abuse complaints and suspected criminal misconduct should be reported to the DMA IG promptly
  • Usually the IG closest to the complaint provides assistance or conducts inquiries into the matters submitted