Broadband issues? You’ll be automatically compensated from today
Seven providers have agreed to give customers their money back without having to ask if they experience delays with repairs, missed engineer appointments or with the start of a new service.
BT, Sky, TalkTalk, Virgin Media and Zen Internet had already signed up to the scheme.
Ofcom has today announced that Hyperoptic and Vodafone have also signed up and will start paying compensation automatically later this year.
Previously, only around one in seven broadband or home phone customers who suffered delayed repairs, installations or missed engineer appointments received compensation from their provider, according to Ofcom.
The regulator said the new scheme could see customers benefit from a total of £142m in payments – around nine times the amount they received before. As well as consumers, it will benefit the many small and medium-sized businesses who use residential landline and broadband services.
How the compensation scheme works
Sharon White, Ofcom chief executive, said: “We think it’s unacceptable that people should be kept waiting for a new line, or a fault to be fixed.
“These new protections mean phone and broadband firms will want to avoid problems occurring in the first place. But if they fall short, customers must be treated fairly and given money back, without having to ask for it.
“We welcome the companies’ commitment to this scheme, which acts as a strong incentive to improve service for customers.”
Ofcom said it will closely watch how companies comply with the scheme, and will report next year on how it is working. If customers are not being treated fairly, it will step in and take action.