Published: Fri, November 10, 2017
Finance | By Loren Pratt

ISPs agree to Ofcom broadband compensation proposals

ISPs agree to Ofcom broadband compensation proposals

Although random internet outages are now not covered by the scheme, if broadband is down for more than two days, customers will get £8 per day that internet remains unavailable.

Back in March, Ofcom proposed some new ideas to hold UK-based internet providers accountable for poor service.

Major providers including BT, Sky, TalkTalk, Virgin Media and Zen Internet, which account for roughly 90 per cent of the landline and broadband customers in the United Kingdom, have committed to the compensation policy which will see £8 handed back for each calendar day the service is not repaired, £25 compensated for a missed engineer appointment and £5 returned for each day a new service is delayed. If a provider fails to start a new service on time £5 per day will be paid and £25 must be handed over for every missed appointment by an engineer.

Now only one in seven customers experiencing these problems will be paid any compensation and it is typically paid at a lower rate.

Despite introducing the new compensation charges, the amounts have dropped from original proposals.

Lindsey Fussell, Consumer Group Director at Ofcom, commented: "Waiting too long for your landline or broadband to be fixed is frustrating enough, without having to fight for compensation. People will get the money they deserve, while providers will want to work harder to improve their service".

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

However, the regulator added, many standard business contracts already provide compensation for similar problems, but around half of SMEs are not fully aware of this. There will be a 15-month implementation period before the scheme comes into force to give providers sufficient time to adapt their billing systems, online accounts and call centres.

Ofcom has calculated that under current compensation efforts, people receive an average of £3.69 per day for the loss of service and £2.39 per day for delayed installations. Other providers could agree to sign up in the future. "Ofcom will closely monitor the industry scheme, and review it one year after being implemented to ensure it's working for consumers".

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