cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Compensation for delayed install - VM playing games

jamey_smith_2
Tuning in

Long story short, virgin media broadband ordered 22nd July and install booked for 10 August 

7th August Virgin media email informing of delay of installation due to them needing to do some ‘outside work’, installation delayed a month till 09/09/23
Few weeks go by and I am constantly pushing for updates, at this point I am aware that the cables need to be pulled ?? Whatever that means, reading online forums and can see this is a common occurance

Eventually after many phone calls I am told my ‘outside work’ has been completed and I am able to change my install date to 01/09/23

installed fine on 01/09/23 so I go down the route of chasing compensation which I believe I am entitled to, £5.83 a day for 22 days delayed install + 1 missed installation day (around £150 in total)

receive a letter today informing I am not eligible for compensation due to something about 1 man or 2 man install ? I have no idea what this means, none of this was informed when I booked my install date & my email confirmation for date of original install mentions nothing about what type of installation it will he

 

am I being fobbed off? Can I take this further? What steps do I need to take?

 

thanks

1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

Accepted Solutions

Point 1 is something VM has invented to avoid, or reduce, paying out under the auto compensation scheme. Point 2 is something VM has invented to avoid, or reduce, paying out under the auto compensation scheme.

VM has tried to conflate parts of the auto-comp rules to do with non-payment for a missed appointment (when 24 hours notice is given of the cancellation) alongside not paying at all the daily rate which should be paid, if the 'date initially confirmed in writing' to 'activate' services is missed.

Whether it takes 1, 2 or 10 people to do the installation is irrelevant under the auto compensation scheme. VM also tries to confuse the picture further by talk of 'provisional' installation dates also linked to the 1 or 2 person claim.

These smoke-and-mirrors tactics are designed to confuse the customer in the hope they will give up and just be glad that the installation is finally completed.

If you read through the past topics above (reporting successful feedback cases), you will see that the above ideas from VM were dismissed at arbitration where the adjudicator decided either a) VM never gave any indication at the outset the installation date was 'provisional' or b) VM kept issuing installation dates which could not be achieved because no cable was in place.

So, the part which is relevant is the 'date initially confirmed in writing' when VM said it would 'activate' your services. Key words being 'confirmed' and 'activate'.

If your first confirmed activation date was 10/8/23, and you were actually activated on 1/9/23, that would be 22 days @£5.83 per day = £128.26. You can add in £29.15 per missed appointment (which VM said you had to be in for) where VM failed to give you 24 hours notice of the cancellation.

VM is supposed to proactively issue you with a deadlock letter once deadlock is reached. You can go to arbitration with the deadlock letter or 8 weeks after you first complained. IMHO a 28 day delay to issue a deadlock letter is unacceptable (you should report this to OFCOM, as per info at the end below). Ombudsman deadlock guidance to suppliers is here

https://partners.ombudsman-services.org/resources/guidance-notes/eight-week-and-deadlock-letters-com...

It costs you nothing (other than time/effort) to progress the matter to arbitration. It is likely to cost VM in fees a lot more that the £130-ish that is in dispute. You already seem to have a good outline of the case on this topic which you would need to formalise into evidence for the ombudsman in a timeline with supporting evidence (messages, emails, texts, dates, times, phone calls etc.)

So, if you think your situation fits in with the above, and you are minded to follow up with submitting the case to arbitration, you should go ahead with the claim.

You can share your unhappy complaint experience with OFCOM.

They launched an investigation into VM on 13 July 2023 specifically into VM's cancellation and complaints processes and whether VM is referring customers on to ADR/arbitration

https://www.ofcom.org.uk/about-ofcom/bulletins/enforcement-bulletin/open-cases/cw_01275

Case ref. no. and an email at the bottom of the above page or submit with same info via the contact form

https://ofcomforms.secure.force.com/formentry/SitesFormCCTMonitoring

Submitting information won't help your individual complaint but it will contribute to the OFCOM investigation and it sounds like your experience is directly relevant to the terms of reference of the investigation (specifically in a very slow timescale to provide you with a deadlock letter)

Good luck if you do go ahead with the arbitration case and post back the outcome on here (good or bad) which does help others in future in the same situation.

See where this Helpful Answer was posted

11 REPLIES 11

Portery
Fibre optic

A 1 man prepull is a re pull where a vm tech is assigned to pull the cable to the cabinet.  

a 2man is when they have have a an issue with construction for eg no visible tee,  or blockages .

majority of installs are completed easily but you have areas now where Albers have damaged ducts or blocked them.

so I’ll give u an eg of a 2 man delay for auto comp.

u sign up and your first install date is the 1 august vm and partners have 3 days upto the install date to complete the prepull if they don’t complete the prepull within 3 days before you will be notified a new date. So you get a new date given for eg 20th aug. So that’s your first fail because ur appointment has changed to a new date and you was notified of the changes you get no missed appoint comp. 
so now you have a 2nd date same rule applies above they have 3 days before install to make sure they complete the prepull  if they complete the prepull and your installed before or on the 2nd install date your not eligible for auto comp.  But if they failed to install your services your auto comp would start for the 2nd failed prepull.

really nobody from vm should give out prepull dates because they just roll out to the next day and they may have not been routed out. You don’t have to be at home only if there is no access but you would be contacted and a date given when it would be routed out on that date to complete . 


goslow
Alessandro Volta

Yes, you are (very possibly/very probably) being fobbed off by VM.

The description from @Portery is VM's version of how they would like to interpret the auto compensation scheme. It is certainly interesting to see it explained in full though as I can't recall seeing it explained in such detail on here from a VM insider before. Needless to say it is skewed in favour of VM to minimise, or avoid, paying out in full.

The idea of 'provisional' installation dates and reductions in payment due to one-man and two-man teams is something VM has invented itself and it flies in the face of the spirit and the aims of what the auto-comp scheme was meant to achieve (namely that waiting customers get a reliable installation date and the supplier has to pay compensation if they fail to deliver on time)

Read this post here from yesterday where I replied to a similar question

https://community.virginmedia.com/t5/QuickStart-set-up-and/Do-Pre-Pull-days-count-towards-Delayed-In...

You should track back through your communications and find 'the date initially confirmed in writing' to 'activate a customer’s fixed line or broadband service'.

Once you have done that, make your own timeline of events and work out what you think you are due. The current rates are here

https://www.ofcom.org.uk/phones-telecoms-and-internet/advice-for-consumers/costs-and-billing/automat...

Don't forget to include any no-show appointments when VM said you had to be in but they failed to turn up without giving you at least 24 hours notice.

Some past feedback on successful arbitration cases is in the links below. Some are compensation cases for delayed fault repairs and some for delayed installations. They should give you some encouragement that the correct compensation can be achieved and not to take VM's explanations of what they say they will allow you to have at face value. Unfortunately though you may have to go all the way to arbitration to get paid whatever you might be due and you may have to do some legwork yourself to work it all out in accordance with the scheme.

https://community.virginmedia.com/t5/QuickStart-set-up-and/Compensation-awarded-by-CISAS-after-faile...

https://community.virginmedia.com/t5/Home-Phone/Landline-not-working/m-p/5230030#M184701

https://community.virginmedia.com/t5/QuickStart-set-up-and/Pre-Pull-Nightmare/m-p/5275679#M226421

https://community.virginmedia.com/t5/Home-Phone/Still-waiting-for-deadlock-lettet/m-p/5291958#M18973...

https://community.virginmedia.com/t5/Managing-Your-Account-Cable/Compensation-Scheme/m-p/5304899#M22...

https://community.virginmedia.com/t5/QuickStart-set-up-and/Compensation-advice-please/m-p/5326587#M2...

https://community.virginmedia.com/t5/Home-Phone/A-tale-of-woe/m-p/5345224#M194067

https://community.virginmedia.com/t5/Managing-Your-Account-Cable/Compensation/m-p/5375731#M236832

https://community.virginmedia.com/t5/QuickStart-set-up-and/Waiting-for-pre-installation-work-can-I-c...

Client62
Legend

The OP asks "What steps do I need to take?"

1) Wait for the contractor / engineers to resolve the cable issues. Expect it when it is done.

2) Cancel the new service request.

jamey_smith_2
Tuning in

Please see response today via WhatsApp -

 

*Arvind*
Thank you for sharing the screenshot results and on the account notes as the complaint resolution it states that cases, we only pay Delayed Install Auto-Comp for 2-man jobs under spcicific scenarios: 1. If we encounter a construction issue that requires multiple attempts to resolve, we compensate for the time elapsed from the second attempt onwards.
2. If we encounter more than one construction issue, we compensate for the time elapsed from the second issue
onwards. In your case, the installation was positioned as a 2-Man install, and there was only one construction issue that resulted in a reschedule, pushing the installation date to 09/09. However, we are pleased to inform you that the installation was successfully completed ahead of schedule on 01/09. Therefore, there is no compensation applicable.

I will be raising a request for the deadlock letter to be send and the estimated time for you to receive the letter is 28 days.

 

To a normal customer like myself, this means absolutely nothing to me

it looks like an excuse to try get out of it, the info I do have is I have email confirmation of my install date being 10th August 2023

I then receive a text on the 7th August that there will be a delay

 

I guess the question I want to know the answer to, is do I have a case, or should I just leave it?

Point 1 is something VM has invented to avoid, or reduce, paying out under the auto compensation scheme. Point 2 is something VM has invented to avoid, or reduce, paying out under the auto compensation scheme.

VM has tried to conflate parts of the auto-comp rules to do with non-payment for a missed appointment (when 24 hours notice is given of the cancellation) alongside not paying at all the daily rate which should be paid, if the 'date initially confirmed in writing' to 'activate' services is missed.

Whether it takes 1, 2 or 10 people to do the installation is irrelevant under the auto compensation scheme. VM also tries to confuse the picture further by talk of 'provisional' installation dates also linked to the 1 or 2 person claim.

These smoke-and-mirrors tactics are designed to confuse the customer in the hope they will give up and just be glad that the installation is finally completed.

If you read through the past topics above (reporting successful feedback cases), you will see that the above ideas from VM were dismissed at arbitration where the adjudicator decided either a) VM never gave any indication at the outset the installation date was 'provisional' or b) VM kept issuing installation dates which could not be achieved because no cable was in place.

So, the part which is relevant is the 'date initially confirmed in writing' when VM said it would 'activate' your services. Key words being 'confirmed' and 'activate'.

If your first confirmed activation date was 10/8/23, and you were actually activated on 1/9/23, that would be 22 days @£5.83 per day = £128.26. You can add in £29.15 per missed appointment (which VM said you had to be in for) where VM failed to give you 24 hours notice of the cancellation.

VM is supposed to proactively issue you with a deadlock letter once deadlock is reached. You can go to arbitration with the deadlock letter or 8 weeks after you first complained. IMHO a 28 day delay to issue a deadlock letter is unacceptable (you should report this to OFCOM, as per info at the end below). Ombudsman deadlock guidance to suppliers is here

https://partners.ombudsman-services.org/resources/guidance-notes/eight-week-and-deadlock-letters-com...

It costs you nothing (other than time/effort) to progress the matter to arbitration. It is likely to cost VM in fees a lot more that the £130-ish that is in dispute. You already seem to have a good outline of the case on this topic which you would need to formalise into evidence for the ombudsman in a timeline with supporting evidence (messages, emails, texts, dates, times, phone calls etc.)

So, if you think your situation fits in with the above, and you are minded to follow up with submitting the case to arbitration, you should go ahead with the claim.

You can share your unhappy complaint experience with OFCOM.

They launched an investigation into VM on 13 July 2023 specifically into VM's cancellation and complaints processes and whether VM is referring customers on to ADR/arbitration

https://www.ofcom.org.uk/about-ofcom/bulletins/enforcement-bulletin/open-cases/cw_01275

Case ref. no. and an email at the bottom of the above page or submit with same info via the contact form

https://ofcomforms.secure.force.com/formentry/SitesFormCCTMonitoring

Submitting information won't help your individual complaint but it will contribute to the OFCOM investigation and it sounds like your experience is directly relevant to the terms of reference of the investigation (specifically in a very slow timescale to provide you with a deadlock letter)

Good luck if you do go ahead with the arbitration case and post back the outcome on here (good or bad) which does help others in future in the same situation.

Kain_W
Forum Team (Retired)
Forum Team (Retired)

Hi jamey_smith_2,

Thanks for your post and welcome to the community!

I'd like to extend our apologies for the issues faced with getting installed, just regarding the message you've received, has our team advised that no compensation is due on the ccount for the delays?

Let us know, 

Kain

As per the information above, virgin media have refused to pay out any compensation for the reasons stated above

 

even though I have text message proof from your complaints team to say I would be eligible for compensation

 

this will be going further, I don’t care how long it takes. 

I don’t get why virgin media put them selves in this position, it is £150! When they know they will lose eventually. 

-tony-
Alessandro Volta

cut through all the c r a p and bs from VM - get a deadlock letter or open a complaint and wiat for them to fob it off - lose it or generally f it up then go to the arbitrator

detail your case and add another £150 for the lies and rubbish VM have spouted - its free for you and it will cost VM a few hundred more than what they eventually pay you - if you want any payment in cash rather than credit on your account demand that

 

 

____________________

Tony.
Sacked VIP


@jamey_smith_2 wrote:

As per the information above, virgin media have refused to pay out any compensation for the reasons stated above

 

even though I have text message proof from your complaints team to say I would be eligible for compensation

 

this will be going further, I don’t care how long it takes. 

I don’t get why virgin media put them selves in this position, it is £150! When they know they will lose eventually. 


They do it, because some bean counter somewhere in VM Towers has worked out that overall it is cheaper to have some kind of automated system making (flawed) decisions, than to have actual human beings assessing the situations. Probably some statistical model has worked out that more people will simply accept it and move on rather than fight it, and although VM will massively lose out in the event of a customer fighting and winning, overall, it probably saves them money!

OK, yes, you are going to have to play the game, firstly make a formal complaint, you might want to do this in writing, do keep a copy and send it by recorded delivery. In this you plainly state that your installation was delayed by x days, you tried to claim the required compensation and were denied this for spurious and ‘made-up’ reasons. On that basis you expect a sum of £xyz to be credited to your account, plus an additional £50 for the inconvenience and the fact that you have had to work to claim the supposed ‘automatic’ compensation.

 Naturally this claim will be treated with the same degree of customer service which you have already encountered. And that’s fine, if you get a response (by no means assured), you reject it and demand a ‘deadlock letter’. This request will also probably be ignored.

However armed with said deadlock letter, or eight weeks after the date of your initial complaint, you escalated the entire sorry mess to the Ombudsman service. In your submission to them, you request the requisite OFCOM mandated compensation for the delay, plus an additional £150-£200 for the inconvenience, poor complaint handling, and last but not least, a deliberate attempt by VM to deny you the owed compensation by, well, lying!