Review of ADR in the telecoms sector Call for Inputs

ukcta_publicPolicy papers

18th January 2024

UKCTA: Submission
By email

UKCTA is pleased to have the opportunity to respond to the Call for inputs in relation to the review of ADR in the telecoms sector.

We note that Ofcom intends to consider the amount of time a consumer has to wait before submitting a case for alternative dispute resolution (currently 8 weeks). In carrying out its analysis, we would expect Ofcom to refer to its previous analysis in December 2016 when it considered that a shorter period was not necessary for the following main reasons:[1]

  • the cumulative effect of Ofcom’s ADR should be, primarily, to ensure that complaints are resolved more quickly by CPs or, in what Ofcom considered would be the minority of cases, our proposals should make it clear more quickly that a complaint cannot be resolved, and an ADR Letter must be issued by the CP so the complaint can be referred to ADR;
  • there was insufficient evidence in 2016 to justify proposing a shorter period – in this respect, Ofcom concluded that the additional record keeping requirements as a result of the 2016 review would assist Ofcom in understanding whether a shorter period may be warranted and, if so, what that period might be;
  • the eight-week period was consistent with the approach taken in other regulated sectors (e.g. energy and financial services);
  • Ofcom emphasised that its ADR rules are meant to be minimum standards – CPs would not be prevented from imposing their own higher standards such as, for example, a commitment to refer complaints to ADR if they have not been resolved with a period of time that is less than eight weeks.

UKCTA is pleased to have the opportunity to respond to the Call for inputs in relation to the review of ADR in the telecoms sector.

We note that Ofcom intends to consider the amount of time a consumer has to wait before submitting a case for alternative dispute resolution (currently 8 weeks). In carrying out its analysis, we would expect Ofcom to refer to its previous analysis in December 2016 when it considered that a shorter period was not necessary for the following main reasons:[1]