Consumer Vulnerability Strategy

We published our Consumer Vulnerability Strategy in 2013. It builds on the earlier work of our Social Action Plan and Social Action Strategy.

What is the Ofgem Consumer Vulnerability Strategy?

Our strategy has two roles:

  • To guide Ofgem’s approach to understanding vulnerability – through evidence, research and market analysis – to help us set our priorities, develop and implement interventions and assess their effectiveness.
  • To guide our expectations of supply and distribution companies to embed consideration of consumer vulnerability when they design and deliver products and services.

Consumer Vulnerability Strategy objective

The overarching objective is to understand and identify the causes of vulnerable situations in the energy market. 

Our aim is to protect consumers and ensure they do not face barriers when engaging with the market. We will use our regulatory powers to create the right framework to protect and empower them.

How we define Vulnerability

We define vulnerability as when a consumer’s personal circumstances and characteristics combine with aspects of the market to create situations where they are: 

  • significantly less able than a typical consumer to protect or represent his or her interests in the energy market 
  • significantly more likely than a typical consumer to suffer detriment, or that detriment is likely to be more substantial

Through the publications and update feed below you can access our publications and outputs produced in relation to the Consumer Vulnerability Strategy.

Publications and updates

  • Published: 31st Jan 2001
  • Reports and plans
  • 1 Associated documents
This short report on Fuel Direct has been prepared by a small group put together by Ofgem as part of work on the Social Action Plan.

  • Published: 28th Feb 2000
  • Reports and plans
  • 1 Associated documents
The Social Action Plan sets out a programme of work which Ofgem is undertaking, with others, to tackle fuel poverty.

  • Published: 30th Oct 1999
  • Decisions
  • 1 Associated documents
Social Action Plan: A Framework Document.

  • Published: 28th Oct 1999
  • Decisions
  • 1 Associated documents
In May of this year, Ofgem published its Social Action Plan: Discussion Document, to advance the process of identifying: what are the causes of fuel poverty; who it affects; the various bodies and organisations which can contribute to reducing or...

  • Published: 1st Oct 1999
  • Decisions
  • 1 Associated documents
interested organisations to the Social Action Plan: Discussion Document (the Discussion doument) which was published in May 1999.

  • Published: 29th May 1999
  • Consultations and responses
  • 1 Associated documents
one of the six priorities which have been established for the new regulatory organisation for electricity and gas.

  • Published: 29th May 1999
  • Consultations and responses
  • 1 Associated documents
Social Action Plan: Discussion Paper.

  • Published: 1st May 1999
  • Consultations and responses
  • 1 Associated documents
This document is intended to advance the process of identifying what are the causes of fuel poverty;who it affects; the various bodies and organisations which can contribute to reducing or eliminating it; and what the special contribution of regulation...

  • Published: 29th Jun 1998
  • Consultations and responses
  • 1 Associated documents
The Government has asked the electricity and gas regulators to prepare an industrywide action plan to ensure efficiency, choice and fairness in the provision of gas and electricity to disadvantaged customers.

  • Published: 29th Mar 1998
  • Decisions
  • 1 Associated documents
This document sets out my final proposals for improvements to the Standards of Performance which are set for the 14 public electricity suppliers (PESs).

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