Complainant: Ofcom own-initiative investigation
Investigation against: Axis Telecom Limited (Axis Telecom)
Case opened: 16 June 2008
Investigation closed: 15 December 2008
Case closed: 22 May 2009
Issue: Axis Telecoms compliance with General Conditions 14.5 and 1.2 of the General Conditions of Entitlement.
Relevant instrument: General Conditions 14.5 and 1.2 of the General Conditions of Entitlement.
Following the issuing of a Notification under section 94 of the Communications Act 2003 (the Notification) on 15 December 2008; Axis was required, before the deadline of 23 January 2009, to make any representations that it wished to make to Ofcom about the matters contained in the Notification, to comply with the requirements of GC 14.5(b) and to remedy fully any consequences arising from its contravention of GC 14.5(b).
Since this date, Ofcom has undertaken monitoring of Axis compliance with the Notification in order to ensure that Axis had taken appropriate steps to comply with the rules and to remedy the consequences of any mis-selling.
Following receipt of the Notification, Axis has taken appropriate steps to comply with GC 14.5(b).
During its engagement with Ofcom since the Notification was issued, Axis has also explained the steps that it has taken to identify those customers who may have been affected by its previous non-compliance with its Code. Axis also reported on the actions that it had taken to remedy the consequences of its non-compliance. These actions include, providing refunds to customers and releasing customers from contractual obligations without charge, where appropriate.
Ofcom has now concluded monitoring Axis compliance with the Notification. It considers that the actions taken by Axis to remedy its identified non-compliance with its Code and the consequences of its non-compliance demonstrate that Axis has been and is, complying with the Notification. On this basis, Ofcom has now closed the case.
Update note 28 January 2009
A non-confidential version of the Notification issued to Axis Telecom Limited under Section 94 of the Communications Act 2003 on 15 December 2008 has now been prepared and can be found at the link below.
End of update note
Ofcoms investigation has concluded that there are reasonable grounds for believing that since 1 January 2008 Axis has failed, and is continuing to fail, to comply with the provisions of its Sales and Marketing Code of Practice (the Code) by:
On 15 December 2008, Ofcom issued a notification under section 94 of the Communications Act 2003 to Axis (the Notification) regarding its past and ongoing contraventions of Ofcoms rules concerning sales and marketing as set out in General Condition 14.5(b) (GC 14.5(b)).
Axis has until 23 January 2009 to make representations to Ofcom about the matters contained in the Notification, to comply with the requirements of GC 14.5(b) and to remedy fully any consequences arising from its contravention of GC 14.5(b).
Ofcom would expect that the steps Axis takes to comply with the requirements of GC14.5 (b) may include, but are not limited to:
Ofcom would expect that the steps Axis takes to remedy any consequences arising from its contravention may include, but are not limited to:
Alternatively, the Notification provides that by 23 January 2009, Axis may make a proposal to Ofcom concerning the remedying of consequences by a specified date to be agreed by Ofcom (although Ofcom is not bound to accept such a proposal).
Ofcom will now monitor Axis compliance with the Notification.
A non-confidential version of the Notification is currently being prepared and will be published shortly.
Text published when the case was opened
Ofcom has opened an own-initiative investigation into Axis Telecom, following receipt of information gathered through Ofcoms enforcement programme: Monitoring and enforcement of mis-selling and conduct relating to the transfer of customers between communications providers, and complaints received by Ofcoms Advisory Team.
General Condition 14.5 requires that communications providers establish, and comply with, a Code of Practice for sales and marketing. The investigation will examine whether there are reasonable grounds for believing that Axis Telecom has failed to comply with the requirements of its Code of Practice for Sales and Marketing activity. The investigation will also consider whether there are reasonable grounds to believe that Axis Telecom has failed to comply with General Condition 1.2 with regard to Axis Telecoms use of information obtained during the customer transfer process.
Case Leader: Mark Thorndike ( e-mail: Mark.Thorndike@ofcom.org.uk)
Case Reference: CW/00987/06/08