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Cerberus Auto-Compensation Policy

Introduction

In 2019 a handful of Internet Service Providers (ISPs) adopted a voluntary scheme proposed by the UK Telecoms Regulator, Ofcom. This scheme provides compensation for Broadband problems to customers without them needing to ask for it.

The Ofcom automatic compensation scheme states that for residential customers that the following compensation would apply:
 
Problem Customer entitled to compensation if… Amount of Compensation
Delayed repair following loss of service The service has stopped working & it is not fully fixed after 2 full working days £8 for each calendar day that the service is not repaired.
Missed Appointments An engineer does not turn up for a scheduled appointment, or it is cancelled with less than 24 hours’ notice £25 per missed appointment.
Delays with the start of a new service The provider promises to start a new service on a particular date but fails to do so. £5 for each calendar day of delay, including the missed start date.
 

Why did Cerberus not join the voluntary scheme?

Cerberus, like most other ISPs believes that there are serious flaws with the voluntary scheme.

More than 90% of qualifying compensation events are not the fault of the ISP, they are the fault of the upstream telecoms provider; Openreach, BT Wholesale, or Talk Talk Business.

Openreach & BT Wholesale do not pay the full value of the compensation event that they have caused. Instead Openreach/BT Wholesale pay the following amounts:
 
Problem Ofcom Compensation Openreach / BT Wholesale Compensation
Delayed repair following loss of service £8 for each calendar day that the service is not repaired. £4.76
Missed Appointments £25 per missed appointment. £19.77
Delays with the start of a new service £5 for each calendar day of delay, including the missed start date. £4.29
 
Talk Talk Business also does not pay the full amount and will only pay compensation to Cerberus if we formally adopt the Ofcom scheme with no modification permitted.

The Ofcom scheme only applies to residential customers. The majority of Cerberus customers are business customers.  We don’t think this is fair.

Many of Cerberus’ customers are not direct customers but buy their services through resellers. Consequently, we have no direct relationship with the end user and cannot know if they are a residential or business customer.  

Cerberus’ Proposal

Cerberus has arranged with BT Wholesale / Openreach that we will receive compensation payments (£4.76, £19.77, £4.29) not just for residential customers but also for business customers.

We will pass on 100% of the compensation payment we receive to the customer regardless of residential/business status. This means that we will pay compensation more frequently than we would have done if we adopted the Ofcom scheme.  We think this is the right thing to do for our customers.

We will automatically apply the compensation as a credit on your bill. Depending on the timing of the event and the information we receive from BT Wholesale this may not be the same month as the qualifying event occurs. Our billing systems are automated and will apply the credit as soon as confirmation is received from BT.  

Is there anything it doesn’t apply to?

At the time of writing this scheme applies to some Broadband Internet access products (ADSL2+, FTTC, FTTP) supplied in whole or part by BT Wholesale. 

It does not apply to FTTP on Demand, TalkTalk Business products, or any other products such as Ethernet leased lines (these are covered under a different Service Level Agreement).

If the loss in service is caused by equipment or activity within your home or business, you are not entitled to compensation under the scheme.

Similarly, you won’t receive compensation if you breach your contract, if you caused the service failure or if you prevent it from being resolved – for example if you request a later engineer appointment than the one offered, delaying repairs to the service.

ISPs are entitled to limit the amount of compensation they pay to customers. After 30 days of an automatic compensation payment occurring, we will notify to let you know that automatic compensation payments would stop after a further 30 days.  

Further information

Please talk to your account manager for full details of the scheme.  If you are not sure who your account manager is please email sales@cerberusnetworks.co.uk or call 0345 257 1333 .
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