The issue

Scunthorpe United had been in contact with their water retailer for over four years requesting a reduction to their bill because of a Return to Sewer allowance they believed they were entitled to.

This allowance is applicable for customers on a meter in certain circumstances – usually when more than 5% of water supplied is not returned to the public sewer. If this is the case, customers may be eligible for an increased allowance against their water usage charge.

Despite repeated contact, the club did not have the issue resolved and raised an initial complaint in 2020. They raised the issue again in 2021 but did not receive a response from the retailer – this is when they contacted CCW for help.

What we did to help

We contacted the retailer and asked them to respond to several points the club had raised. This included; explaining why the complaint emails had not been responded to and why a Return to Sewer refund had not been issued. In addition to the main complaint, we also asked the company to consider offering a goodwill gesture due to the time it had taken to resolve the issue and the inconvenience this had caused.

The retailer responded and told us that the delay was due to an initial meter reading not being recorded when the business switched retailers when the non-household market opened. This issue needed to be resolved between the retailer and wholesaler and was outside the control of the customer.

The results

After our involvement, the issue regarding the missing meter reading was resolved between the wholesaler and retailer and the club was finally told that the Return to Sewer refund had been applied. This resulted in over £11,000 being removed from the club’s bill and a goodwill payment of £40 also given as an acknowledgement for the length of time it had taken to resolve the matter. In addition to the club having £11,000 removed from its current bill, they will also be paying £5000 less each year going forward, compared to what they were paying before they came to us for help.

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