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Citizens Advice response to Ofgem’s Consultation on Guidance for Third Party Intermediary Alternative Dispute Resolution Scheme Criteria

16 March 2023

Citizens Advice has responded to Ofgem’s consultation on guidance for TPI ADR scheme criteria [ 230 kb]

Citizens Advice fully supports the requirement introduced by Ofgem that, when securing microbusiness contracts through Third Party Intermediaries (TPIs), suppliers must only work with TPIs that are members of a QDSS. We also support the requirement that these schemes must be able to demonstrate that they can provide independent, fair, effective and transparent out-of-court dispute settlement services to support microbusiness customers. 

Citizens Advice has previously established that, although many brokers/ TPIs help microbusinesses get a good deal, a significant minority continue to cause detriment to consumers. Often, this detriment is exacerbated by the fact that, unlike non-domestic energy suppliers, TPIs are not regulated by Ofgem. The introduction of a comprehensive and effective ADR scheme is therefore of great value to consumers affected by poor TPI practices, and we welcome any guidance that will contribute to raising the standards of ADR schemes. 

However, we do have some concerns about the guidance proposed by Ofgem, which we have outlined in our response.