Broadband providers agree new automatic compensation system

Broadband providers agree new automatic compensation system

Broadband providers agree new automatic compensation system

Today, compensation is paid out in only around one in seven cases of consumers suffering from slow repairs, missed appointments or delayed installations - something Ofcom is keen to address. Now, it several major ISPs, including BT, Sky, Virgin Media and TalkTalk, have agreed to be part of this new scheme.

To address this problem, Ofcom is also set to bring in new rules that are supposed to ensure SMEs are given clearer and more detailed information upfront about their broadband service, which will include in what circumstances they can claim compensation.

A quarter of people who have had a missed appointment said they took a wasted day off work to wait at home for a broadband or phone line engineer who never showed up.

Finally, if a provider says your new broadband or landline service will be up and running on a particular day and doesn't deliver, you get £5 for every day you're disconnected "including the missed start date".

It's worth stressing that for a delayed fix you'll begin to be paid compensation if it's not fixed after two working days (so Monday to Friday), but after this point you'll be owed £8 each calendar day, including weekends and bank holidays.

The compensation will be paid to customers experiencing problems with their broadband and landlines that are not fixed within set time frames, as seen below. "Launching the first ever automatic compensation scheme for telecoms customers will be complex, and requires significant changes to providers' billing systems, online accounts and call centres".

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Ofcom, the UK's communications regulator, laid out plans earlier in the year to incentivize better customer service in the broadband industry.

And compensation will also be provided for delays when setting up a new phone or broadband connection.

"Ofcom's Lindsey Fussell said: ".providers will have to pay money back automatically, whenever repairs or installations don't happen on time, or an engineer doesn't turn up.

"For all consumers to get what they're entitled to, it's vital that all providers play fair and sign up to this scheme". The regulator says it will monitor the scheme and review it a year after implementation to make sure it is working for customers otherwise it will step in.

Ofcom said that, overall, they expect compensation levels to increase around nine fold.

KitGuru Says: As more and more people rely on their internet connection for work, education and entertainment, ISPs need to work harder to ensure a consistently reliable service.

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