Supplier objections

Publication date
27th February 2015
Closing date
24th April 2015
Policy areas
Status

Supplier objections - update

In the Forward Work Programme 2015-16 we said we would consider whether to pursue reforms to the arrangements by which suppliers may object to customers switching. We noted that a key consideration would be whether the current arrangements could be improved so that consumers in debt were more easily able to get the best deal, while ensuring suppliers were able to take appropriate steps to have debt repaid. We also said that we would publish an update in Q3 of the financial year.

Earlier this year we issued a call for evidence on supplier objections. We carefully considered the responses we received and identified areas where further data was necessary to inform our policy conclusions. We have subsequently issued formal requests for information to a range of suppliers serving the domestic and non-domestic markets. We are now analysing the information that we received in response. In addition, we have commissioned external experts to examine the costs and benefits in more detail as input to our wider consideration of the issue.

We expect to issue a further update early next year. In the meantime, we have today published the non-confidential responses to the call for evidence alongside a report highlighting the views of our Consumer Panel on objections in the domestic market.

Call for evidence

It is vital that energy consumers can easily and confidently change their energy supplier. Ofgem has proposed to lead the industry towards reliable next day switching by 2019. As part of the journey, we have been taking a fresh look at whether objections should be part of a redesigned switching process or whether suppliers should develop other ways of managing risk. We kicked off this work with a call for evidence.

The call for evidence:

  • set out the role that objections have played and outlined current industry practice
  • summarised and sought views on some of the issues that Ofgem will have to consider
  • set out and sought views on some options and their potential impact
  • sought views on when any reform of objections should come into force.