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Auto Compensation Amount Incorrect

Joining in

I'm a new customer of Virgin Media and honestly i wish i had never joined

9 days into my contract i experienced a 7 day outage caused by what i was told to be "cabling issue in my estate"

I've worked in telemcomms for years and know that Ofcom Regulations stipulate that the provider has two day grace period to fix any issue after it being reported then i receive £8.40 per day so 7 days minus the 2 day grace would be £42.00. Earliest someone could come out was 6 days after i told them. Engineer came out and couldnt do anything as it was an estate issue and contractors needed to come from a different part of the country to fix it. I was assured it would be fixed that day, that then turned into being fixed the next afternoon.

My first call about this i asked for a complaint to be opened which wasn't.

Second call i got a complaint reference number and complaint was closed.

I'm now just over a month into my contract and have had a stable connection for a few weeks and when i go to check my bill i see that VM has applied 1 day/£8.40 auto compensation to my account. This is completely unacceptable given the rules imposed by Ofcom and VM has signed up to about what can be compensated for

The people on the phones don't know what that they're talking about so i've given up calling and trying to use whatsapp means waiting at least a few hours for a response and in some cases overnight before someone looks at it

I'm now on my third complaint with VM in 4 or 5 weeks. At this point i want what i'm owed otherwise VM can issue me with my deadlock letter, which when i last checked VM will be fined approx £300.00 for that happening, and we can go to the Ombudsman


Tuning in

Hi, Looking for any others that share my shocking experience with Virgin Media Auto Compensation Scheme.

I took my contract out on 2nd Novembet 2022, with an install of 28th Nov 2022 with a pre-install inspection on the 14th Nov 2022.  Pre- Install took place at 6pm in the pitch dark and took 5 mins and was advised there was a blockage at my BT Duct and they would need to come back to clear it, fast forward to 13th January 2023, Pre- install team finally turned up and cleared the blockage by hand within the BT wall box as the BT Duct wasn't blocked at all!, the whole unblocking took less than 5 mins. Throughout the period of 2nd Nov 2022 till finally getting my services on the 14th Nov 2023, Virgin Media blamed the delay on given information by their 3rd party contractors stating that they required Road Permits and that their Permit requests wete being  turned down by my local council and a new request has been placed. During this ridiculous delay, I contacted my Council Planning and Roads Department and was advised that no! Permit had ever been requested or denied or re-requested, a blatent lie by Virgin Media's 3rd party contractors, I was also advised that no permits were required for any blockage on my land, only on the road or pavement.

On numerous occasions after calling Virgin Media who simply parrot like repeated the permit lie Ad Nausea on about 20 calls I made over this period of nearly 5 months.

I calculated that I was owed 106 days of compensation excluding cancellation of Engineer appointment x 4 working of about £740.

Today 31st March 2023 I recieved my Auto Compensation of £186 for 106 days of failure for my services being installed by Virgin Media.

After calling Virgin Media Customer Services / Complaints, the agent advised that I wasn't eligible for any! compensation and refused to record  a complaint as there was nothing to resolve.?, this agent whom I asked to log a complaint didn't even know how the auto compensation scheme even worked!.

I demanded a logged complaint number and was passed over to a supervisor to take my complaint, this supervisor advised me that compensation was not provided because their system said permits were required and this delay did not incur any compensation.  After again advising him that no permits were ever required or requested from my local council, I asked for proof of when these imaginary permits were requested and the proof they were refused by my council, he advised he couldn't provide that evidence and it wasn't VIrgin Media's policy to provide that information to its customers?, I advised him this response was unacceptable as he were required by their own policy to investigate fully any customer complaint and if we progressed to the Alternative Complaint Procedure he would need to provide that information as the onice would be on them to confirm the facts. This seemed to rattle him and he asked me to allow him till Monday 3rd April to find a solution to my complaint.

I have requested Virgin Media on numerous occasion to explain their delays and to confirm what permits were requested, when they were requested and what these permits were for as the delay in installing my services was completely unacceptable and even if a permit was required my local council issues permits with 48 hours and the explanation of awaiting permits simply didn't flout for a delay of 106 days.

I am quiet ready to take this matter as far as I can.!   

If Virgin Media can find this complaint as an example of their customer service being a failed service, where the 3rd part companies they employe lie and fail to complete any work required within a reasonable timescale and then Virgin Media use these lies to get out of paying compensation to their customers.



@Megatronman wrote:

Hi, Looking for any others that share my shocking experience with Virgin Media Auto Compensation Scheme.


There are plenty of similar stories on here, unfortunately.

As you have probably realised, trying to get VM to pay up the correct amount of compo is a non-starter. The CS staff on the phones have zero idea how the compensation scheme works. Rather than admit this, they tend to either make up a figure of compensation or tell you no compensation is due. The 'rules' which are quoted on here in topics of 'two man installation teams' and so forth preventing compensation are also nonsense.

Any information that VM collects about an individual job is likely to be totally unreliable as it will be a composite of data from various sources including VM's own systems and third party contractors.

So, your route from this point is clear. Am not entirely sure, from your description, which parts you have/have not done.

You presumably have a record of 'the date initially confirmed in writing' when VM said it was going to 'activate' your services (your 'go live' date, which was 28/11/22).

If you have not done so already, you need to make a formal complaint to VM first of all

online VM complaints seem to have a habit of being opened and closed in quick succession, often unknown to the customer and then suddenly becoming in accessible to view so be aware of this.

Once you have submitted your complaint, VM has 8 weeks to resolve. If VM does offer a 'resolution' before 8 weeks, you are quite likely to receive something that makes no sense, is written in broken English, in conjunction with some random pick-list phrases thrown in. If you get a 'resolution' that does not meet your expectations, reject the resolution. At that point VM should provide you with a deadlock letter.

VM is not very reliable at doing this either it seems, as reported on here, so you may have to demand one. If VM fails to provide one you should include that as an aggravating factor when you go to Ombudsman Services.

After 8 weeks, or with a deadlock letter, you can go to Ombudsman Services with your complaint.

My own opinion is that VM's strategy to avoid paying out is to give out incorrect and inaccurate information when customers call in and use smoke and mirror techniques to obfuscate and delay proceedings in the hope that the customer gives up.

Once your case goes to arbitration, there is something like an 80% to 85% chance of success. It costs you nothing other than time/effort to claim but it costs VM for the claim handling and any compensation awarded.

If 'permissions' from the council were never required (and were never asked for, as per your own research) then they have no relevance in reducing your claim. There is no reduction in payments where delays are caused by VM's own sub-contractors and their incompetence.

Your description sounds like a typical bungling VM installation. In the last few weeks I have watched one unfold in my own street with a neighbour requiring a cable to be pulled about 100m from the cabinet. It has taken the sub-contractor 4 attempts to complete. Each visit was a near-repeat of the first. I suspect that they were on time-limited visits of 30 or 40 mins. So rather than allocate a few hours to deal with the issue properly and completely, they made 4 separate visits of equivalent time causing long delays for the customer.

If you want a (surprisingly frank!) description of the bungling methods used as evidence, have a look at message #5, para 3 below

which basically says that VM hasn't got a clue what is going on with an individual installation, any dates given are not reliable, and any progress is dependent on the availability of staff/equipment of the sub-contractor.

Hope you manage to make some progress with getting the correct compensation via a complaint to Ombudsman Services.