National Complaint Acceptance Guidelines


If a complaint meets the following criteria, it must be accepted by BBB and treated as a complaint for purposes of reporting.

BBBs typically do not impose additional requirements, such as requiring that complaints meet a certain monetary threshold. And, while BBB’s strongly encourage consumers to first contact the business, a complaint will not be rejected because the consumer declines to do so.

Complaints Accepted by BBB

Better Business Bureaus accept all complaints that meet the following criteria:

  • The complaint includes the complainant’s name and email OR postal address;

  • The complaint includes the business’s name and provides sufficient information to determine the business’s location;

  • The complaint seeks assistance from BBB;

  • The complaint is from a person (or a person’s authorized representative) or entity (business-to-business) that had a marketplace “relationship;”

  • The complaint relates to a marketplace issue; Typically, the issue complained of must have arisen within the previous 12 months;

  • The complaint alleges a problem experienced with the services or products that the business provided or allegedly agreed to provide;

  • The complaint is not in litigation when filed with BBB and has not been resolved by a previous court action, arbitration, or settlement between the parties; and

  • The complaint contains no abusive language.