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British Gas - using Data Protection as an excuse ....


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Recently bought a house and was told that the boiler was old but "in good working order". The boiler broke down last week so British Gas were called out to fix it. The engineer who attended advised that the previous owners of the house had been advised last year that the boiler was "at risk" didn't meet current safety standards and needed replacing urgently. The previous owners didn't have the courtesy to disclose this information, so I am looking at what legal recourse I have against them. I have 2 young children .. and they could have potentially put them in danger ... something which I consider to be totally unacceptable.

 

I contacted British Gas to try and get a copy of the service history of the boiler to establish exactly what was advised to the previous owner, but they have refused citing "data protection" legislation. I explained that this evidence might be required for a legal dispute ... but they did not budge. To me this is poor service by BG and a blatant mis-use of the Data Protection Act. If a buy a car, I am entitled to see the full service history ... so I would expect the same with a boiler. I am not asking for the personal details of the previous owner ... which I have in any case .... just to know how long the boiler has been dangerous.

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Thread moved here from media forums.

Have a happy and prosperous 2013 by avoiiding Payday loans. If you are sent a private message directing you for advice or support with your issues to another website,this is your choice.Before you decide,consider the users here who have already offered help and support.

Advice offered by Martin3030 is not supported by any legal training or qualification.Members are advised to use the services of fully insured legal professionals when needed.

 

 

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Westnt,

 

With regards to the "at risk" - when a BG engineer uses this term, it means that the boiler is not up to current standards, which can be due to the simplest reasons. If the boiler may cause harm, the BG engineer would cap the gas supply and leave an "immediately dangerous" notice instead.

 

I very much doubt that there was any risk to you or your family, as the engineer couldn't leave the property with the boiler still on, or still able to be used.

 

Regarding the service history, unless the previous owner gives you it, chances are BG wont give you it. It is the same with car service history - if you were to contact a garage who done the work to a car, some would not give you this information as you were not the customer who initially paid for the work.

 

You could try writing directly to the BG customer relations dept and see if they'll give you any old info.

Edited by MrHandyman
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Yes strange.

The Data protection Act would naturally cover personal data from the previous customers,but insofar as the service history or a record of previous work goes,then it would not fall within it.

In any event,nothing to stop BG from editing out anything from any info available.

Have a happy and prosperous 2013 by avoiiding Payday loans. If you are sent a private message directing you for advice or support with your issues to another website,this is your choice.Before you decide,consider the users here who have already offered help and support.

Advice offered by Martin3030 is not supported by any legal training or qualification.Members are advised to use the services of fully insured legal professionals when needed.

 

 

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