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    • moroc
    • By moroc 3rd Oct 17, 11:35 AM
    • 24Posts
    • 3Thanks
    Energy Ombudsman - Challenge A Decision
    • #1
    • 3rd Oct 17, 11:35 AM
    Energy Ombudsman - Challenge A Decision 3rd Oct 17 at 11:35 AM

    I've had an ongoing mare with Sc*ttish P*wer (Sorry for the obscene language) after moving in to a property where they had control of supply.

    I arranged a transfer as soon as I was aware who was the supplier, and attempted to pay my bill via a direct debit to Scottish Power. They never took the payments and then attempted to blame me, when the fault was at their end, I never got a clear explanation but someone didn't set up the DD correctly and payment was never taken.

    What followed was a series them trying to re-bill at a higher amount, adding late payment charges etc, until we requested a deadlock letter in order to take it to the Ombudsman.

    The letter contained a number of false statements, which they refused to amend, and they continued to harass us for payment AFTER the deadlock letter was issued, employing debt collectors in clear contravention of the Financial Conduct Authority statute CONC 7.14.1 - as I understand it, they are registered on the FCA register, and therefore legally bound to comply with their rules?

    The ombudsman rushed through an "investigation", reaching a decision despite being informed that I was waiting on SP providing recordings of phone calls, emails etc via a Subject Access Request; i.e. the Ombudsman investigator did not have access to the full evidence. They offered a derisory 100 "gesture of goodwill" due to "recognition of service shortfalls" - apparently, all SP had done wrong was failed to set up the DD, and their illegal harassment via weekly threatening letters and debt collection agencies (copies of which WERE supplied to the Ombudsman) were perfectly acceptable?

    Quote: "It is reasonable that you consumed energy at your time in the property on supply with it and therefore it is entitled to expect payment. Where a supplier does not successfully gain payment, it will complete its debt collection process. I note that the fault with not gaining payment is with Scottish Power and I have considered this as a service shortfall."

    Upon rejecting their initial proposal, I was told I had 14 days to supply "further evidence", i.e. the SAR, to Scottish Power, who failed to supply the requested SAR until day 14 of this period, making sending it to the Ombudsman impossible. I was told that they would not consider taking action against SP for their delay in supplying the SAR unless an additional complaint was raised with SP regarding the timescales - laughable.

    I find this decision to be a disgrace, to be quite honest. The bill was only for around 260 but it's the sheer principle that I am still expected to pay them 160 given the illegal manner in which they have acted. The Ombudsman's investigator has also made a number of false statements in their communication and has omitted to include very pertinent information to which they are now leaning on as justification for their decision.

    I'm not angry at the level of the financial award but how the investigation has been conducted - it is very slapdash, ignores key evidence and contains a number of false and illogical statements, and I wish to challenge the decision on these grounds.

    I'd like to know what my options are as far as challenging the Ombudsman decision. The decision has been made by an investigator who has advised I have "no right to appeal", however I am aware you can challenge a decision made by an investigator of the Financial Ombdusman, and have the case reviewed directly by an Ombudsman instead of an investigator, and was wondering (i) if this is also the case with the Energy Ombudsman and (ii) how I would go about escalating the complaint?
Page 2
    • trickytree1963
    • By trickytree1963 3rd Oct 17, 9:09 PM
    • 248 Posts
    • 149 Thanks
    In light of their illegal involvement of debt collectors and the fact that I WOULD have paid the bill over 12 months ago if their incompetent staff could manage to collect a payment, then I think having the bill scrapped is a reasonable request, but thanks for your helpful and informative contribution nonetheless.
    Originally posted by moroc
    Best thing to do is pay the balance and move to a more competent supplier than that company. If you let it become an obsession it will consume your time to the detriment of everything
    • welshmoneylover
    • By welshmoneylover 3rd Oct 17, 10:20 PM
    • 2,723 Posts
    • 3,624 Thanks
    Pay the bill.

    The ombudsman is not there to provide back up to consumers who refuse to pay.
    Be happy, it's the greatest wealth
    • moroc
    • By moroc 4th Oct 17, 5:30 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    Pay the bill.

    The ombudsman is not there to provide back up to consumers who refuse to pay.
    Originally posted by welshmoneylover
    No, they're supposed to be there for resolving disputes, a dispute caused by the supplier tacking on "late payment charges" and re-billing a "final" bill which I'd already agreed to pay, refusing to handle a disputed bill correctly and illegally engaging debt collectors.

    That's not simply "refusing to pay" because I want free electric, it's clear grounds for a dispute.

    ;I agreed to pay an amount of 260, they failed to take the payment, and then rebilled at a different, higher amount, having changed their per unit costs to a higher cost.
    by moroc
    Was I not clear enough?
    Last edited by moroc; 04-10-2017 at 5:33 PM.
    • Cardew
    • By Cardew 4th Oct 17, 6:45 PM
    • 27,364 Posts
    • 13,390 Thanks
    it's clear grounds for a dispute.

    Was I not clear enough?
    Originally posted by moroc
    As said earlier:

    Nobody on this forum is questioning the merits of your case, and the understandable frustration with SP. However if you continue with the case, it is likely the only result will be further frustration.
    You started this thread asking how to challenge a decision of the Ombudsman; and/or get SP to waive a 260 bill.

    The collective wisdom of members of this forum is that you are unlikely to succeed in your aim; especially as you won't go to court.
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