1.1 The definitions, below, apply to both this Annex and the Terms of Reference in relation to complaints brought to Ombudsman Services: Energy Brokers:
“Award” means the compensation awarded to the Complainant not exceeding £10,000 (inclusive of VAT, if any) per complaint; “Customer” means a micro business customer who has had a gas or electricity contract sales interaction, or agreed to account management services, with an Energy Broker.
“Energy broker” means an organisation or individual that, either on its own or through arrangements with the other organisations or individuals, provides information and/or advice to a Micro Business Customer about the energy supplier charges and/or other terms and conditions and whose payment for doing so is made or processed by the energy supplier.”
“Energy Supplier” means a supplier of energy who holds a licence to supply gas and/or electricity to domestic and/or microbusiness consumers; “Licence” refers to either:
(a) a gas licence, being;
(i) a licence under section 7A(1) of the Gas Act 1986 (supply licences); or
(ii) a licence under section 7(2) of the Gas Act 1986 (transportation licences); or
(b) an electricity licence, being;
(i) a licence under section 6(1)(d) of the Electricity Act 1989 (supply licences); or
(ii) a licence under section 6(1)(c) of the Electricity Act 1989 (distribution licences);
“Micro business consumer” is a ‘relevant consumer’ as defined in the Gas and Electricity Regulated Providers (Redress Scheme) Order 2008 and as further defined, from time to time, by the Gas and Electricity Markets Authority or Ofgem. As of 31 March 2014 a ‘micro business’ is defined as one with;
(i) An annual consumption of electricity of not more than 100,000 kWh; or
(ii) An annual consumption of gas of not more than 293,000 kWh; or
(iii) Fewer than the equivalent of ten full time employees and an annual turnover or annual balance sheet not exceeding €2 million. Where the micro business receives gas and electricity supplied by the same Energy Supplier, the annual consumption of gas and electricity shall be treated separately for the purposes of determining its capacity to make a complaint to Ombudsman Services: Energy Brokers.
“Ombudsman Services: Energy Brokers ” means the Ombudsman Service provided to Energy Brokers;
“Participating Company” means an Energy Broker admitted into Ombudsman Services: Energy Brokers in accordance with the Terms of Reference, the Membership Rules for Participating Companies and the present Annex and, as the context so requires, each and/or any of its subsidiary undertakings from time to time which has put its relevant services under the jurisdiction of the Ombudsman and Ombudsman Services: Energy Brokers.
2.1 Companies that may become Participating Companies in Ombudsman Services: Energy Brokers are;
(a) companies and/or sole traders that describe themselves as Energy Brokers and are engaged in the sale of gas or electricity services;
(b) companies and/or sole traders that describe themselves as Energy Brokers and provide account management services such as dealing with complaints or account actions on a customer’s behalf; and
2.2 Any other entity that the Ombudsman deems appropriate to admit, upon applying, may become a Participating Company, after considering the products and services it supplies.
3.1 The services provided by Participating Companies of the Ombudsman Services: Energy Brokers which will be covered by, and fall within the jurisdiction of, the Ombudsman and the Ombudsman Services: Energy broker are;
(a) the services associated with the sale of and processing of gas and electricity contracts by a Participating Company, including where a contract has been mis-sold;
(b) the services associated with any account management of the customer’s energy supply provided by a Participating Company; and
(c) such other products and services that, with the agreement of a Participating Company, shall fall within the voluntary jurisdiction of the Ombudsman and Ombudsman Services: Energy Brokers.
4.1 Further to, and in addition to, the provisions of paragraphs 3 and 6 of the Terms of Reference, the Ombudsman and Ombudsman Services: Energy Brokers shall only have jurisdiction in relation to a complaint against a Participating Company if the person making the complaint;
(a) was, at the time the subject matter of the complaint arose, a customer with a grievance regarding a sale attempted or carried out by a Participating Company; or
(b) was, at the time the subject of the complaint arose, a customer with grievance regarding account management services provided by a Participating Company; or
(c) is acting on behalf, and with the consent, of any person falling within the scope of paragraphs 4.1 (a) and (b) above.
5.1 Ombudsman Services: Energy Brokers shall not accept a complaint about a matter which concerns or relates to issues of service provided by an Energy Supplier following a sale by a Participating Company of Ombudsman Services: Energy Brokers.
6.1 Further to, and in addition to, the provisions of paragraphs 3 and 6 of the Terms of Reference, the Ombudsman and Ombudsman Services: Energy Broker shall only accept complaints against an Energy Broker that is deemed a Participating Company and has:
6.2 On Acceptance of a complaint under clause 6.1 above, Ombudsman Services: Energy Brokers will notify the Participating Company of Ombudsman Services: Energy Broker.
7.1 Where the complaint relates to a gas or electricity contact sold by an Energy Broker in respect of the supply of energy by a licenced Energy supplier, and Ombudsman Services: Energy Brokers determines that the contract was mis-sold, Ombudsman Services: Energy Brokers may instruct the Energy Broker to cover any financial loss up to £10,000 and any shortfalls in service caused to the customer within the agreed timeframe.
8.1 We will maintain a register of the brokers who have joined our scheme which will be made available on our website. The register will be publicly available and will allow suppliers to identify whether a broker firm has signed up to ADR to inform their decision as to whether to work with the firm. If a broker firm is expelled from the scheme, they will be removed from the register. Brokers may be expelled from the scheme if;
(a) They fail to pay annual subscription fees and/or complaint fees to Ombudsman Services.
(b) They refuse to implement our remedies or are routinely late in implementing remedies.
(c) Their complaint handling procedure does not adhere to the standards we have set out.
(d) They are rude or abusive to Ombudsman Services staff, or to customers in the course of making a complaint to Ombudsman Services: Energy Brokers.