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Scottish Power: Confusing Literature on Bills


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Hello Friends,

 

Scottish Power, my previous energy provider, had some misleading text on the bills about my current and the best tariff possible and this caused me to not switch to the best tariff.

 

I raised this with energy ombudsman, who agreed with me and asked Scottish Power to pay me Goodwill gesture of £30.00 for shortfall in service. However the ombudsman said they cannot ask Scottish Power to pay for consequential losses due to misleading literature, which would be to apply correct rate retrospectively.

 

Ombudsman said that compensations like consequential losses, stress etc are not in their scope and that's why they can only recommend a Goodwill gesture compensation for shortfall in service.

 

Can you please advise where can I go for consequential losses, other than court. I tried Financial Ombudsman but they said such cases are in their scope. Financial Ombudsman suggested going to ICO. Are they right? Can ICO look into this case of consequential losses due to confusing literature.

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ICO relates to issues such as Data Protection breaches. Not sure why they are relevant.

 

FOS does not deal with energy company issues as far as i am aware.

 

If Energy Ombudsman can't help, then it is a litigation issue between you and Scottish Power. Not sure of the basis of taking Scottish Power to court. You would have to study all of the energy industry rules on billing and make a case that SP failed to do A,B,C and as a result you suffered a loss. Remember that before any court claim you would have to send SP a letter before action telling SP the basis of any court claim, giving them chance to settle.

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What consequential losses do you believe to have suffered ?

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Let us for the moment say that they did show the best tariffs on their literature, would you have switched to a fixed contract supply agreement to get this rate?

 

How do you pay your bills at the moment? if the best tariff meant using a payment method that is different and there could be no automatic switch over would you ahve made a loss of more than £30 over a year?

 

What have you calculated your consequentail loss at- no guessing, you need to post up your current bill based on existing tariff and the supposed best rate for the same payment type to compare ad say over what period this ir based upon.

 

Also unless you can show a contractual condition that allows you to claim a loss that is directly caused by you not reading an offer that you didnt know about (see the problem here, the lack of advertising of the offer rather destroys the claim) then consequential loss is not actionable. You will need a direct loss first or there are no consequences that can arise from that loss. So what are we lookingat, loss of profit? injury causing a loss?

 

How did you bargain the contract beforehand- individually ageed contract between you and SP or just accepting their offer to supply at a published tariff.?

Edited by honeybee13
Paras.
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Their bill itself says that I could save £137.00 per annum if I moved to a different tariff. However they put this information in a very obfuscating and misleading way. The ombudsman agrees that the literature is indeed misleading.

 

This misleading literature prevented me from not understanding that I could move to a different tariff and save money. This is the consequential loss I am talking about.

 

Does this sound a case I can take to court. Naturally I have lost at least £137.00 * 3.00 and that is not a small amount.

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Given the OP's posting history it would be interesting to see any letter (suitably redacted!) from the FOS suggesting the ICO.

 

Was this actually stated? Stated in a letter?.

 

Does this "sound like a case you can take to court"?

Well, you can take any case to court, but that doesn't mean it won't get struck out or lost at trial.

 

You've already been told you'd need to send a letter before claim to SP.

Have you actually asked them to put you back in the position you feel you should be?

 

Or is this another case where you'll make things up?

And / Or generally ignore advice until it is what you want to hear?.

 

Check the OP's posting history under various threads to see them posting as both newlyn and landlor asking questions about the same scenario but as landlord and then tenant (unclear which ; or both are the pretence), denying they are both ID's, then confirming they are both ID's, enquiring about defrauding their income insurance insurer (when facing dismissal as part of a disciplinary, and so on)

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Their bill itself says that I could save £137.00 per annum if I moved to a different tariff. However they put this information in a very obfuscating and misleading way. The ombudsman agrees that the literature is indeed misleading.

 

This misleading literature prevented me from not understanding that I could move to a different tariff and save money. This is the consequential loss I am talking about.

 

Does this sound a case I can take to court. Naturally I have lost at least £137.00 * 3.00 and that is not a small amount.

 

If the bill told you you could save £137, how is that misleading?

Why could they not just say "we pointed out the potential saving, it was up to the customer to use that pointer to look into it" if you tried to take it to court?

Thus, any "loss" is down to your contributory negligence.

 

You note it "prevented me from not understanding", so it made you understand!

 

Comprehension doesn't seem to be your 'strong suit'.......

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If the bill told you you could save £137, how is that misleading?

Why could they not just say "we pointed out the potential saving, it was up to the customer to use that pointer to look into it" if you tried to take it to court?

Thus, any "loss" is down to your contributory negligence.

 

You note it "prevented me from not understanding", so it made you understand!

 

Comprehension doesn't seem to be your 'strong suit'.......

 

Fortunately the energy ombudsman are people who are sensible and just not a jerk. The ombudsman agreed that the literature on bill was misleading.

 

BazzaS, I have not mentioned the entire literature here. So it is childish to assume that I posted verbatim from bill. You need to understand that. There is no point just barking around unnecessarily and making personal comments rather than on the case itself. Also for your information, I managed to get over 20k from my employer as Settlement. Besides that one months notice period and untaken holidays. So if I had followed your advise, I would not have got that money. So stop thinking you are smartest and about my comprehension.

 

People come on the forum to get different possible views of a case. Not necessarily to follow all the advise given here. Its a common Wisdom that "Listen to Everyone, But do what you want".

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I'm happy to let people look at your threads (particularly the ones I referenced earlier), and see what is true, by looking at your postings.

 

They can then make their own decision based on your words, and also consider other's conclusions as to your actions, rather than just relying on mine ......

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You have promised earlier as well to not post on my thread. This is a forum. People want to answer The Question put by someone. No one is an idiot to hold on to past which has no significance. Others have seen your posts and there have been response even after that. You unnecessarily hijack a thread. Such behaviour from you is unwelcome.

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You have promised earlier as well to not post on my thread.

 

Where? Which thread? This thread?

 

This is a forum. People want to answer The Question put by someone. No one is an idiot to hold on to past which has no significance. Others have seen your posts and there have been response even after that. You unnecessarily hijack a thread. Such behaviour from you is unwelcome.

 

Posters deserve to be able to make up their own mind if someone is a troll / not a reliable & truthful poster / 'askhole' / just looking for affirmation or genuinely seeking advice (even if they then chose not to take it).

So, these are relevant issues.

 

If you want the cites of where you were posting as landlord AND tenant, or where you said you weren't both landlor & newlyn, or where you said you were in fact both, or where you asked about getting your employer to allow you to conceal relevant info from your insurer : let me know which, and I'll post the links.

BTW which was the lie : that you aren't both landlor & newlyn (& it was all a coincidence from using the same Internet cafe terminal), or that you are both usernames .......

 

Similarly, if you want me to justify any that I've posted : links on request.

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Back on topic.

 

The problem with a court claim is that they might defend it based on that you can't justify the consequential loss including mitigation. You could have opted to shoparound for your energy and there might have been a saving. They gave you unclear information, but this did not prevent you from conducting your own research as a consumer.

 

If a Judge was looking at this and you were explaining your claim, you would have to justify why legally SP were responsible for the loss amount you were seeking.

 

Up to you how far you want to pursue it and risk not winning.

We could do with some help from you.

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Back on topic.

 

The problem with a court claim is that they might defend it based on that you can't justify the consequential loss including mitigation. You could have opted to shoparound for your energy and there might have been a saving. They gave you unclear information, but this did not prevent you from conducting your own research as a consumer.

 

If a Judge was looking at this and you were explaining your claim, you would have to justify why legally SP were responsible for the loss amount you were seeking.

 

Up to you how far you want to pursue it and risk not winning.

 

My argument is that they have used unfair trading practices of using obfuscating literature. If there was no literature then I would have explored other options. On the bill they used to write "Good News: You are already on the cheapest tariff in the current category". And then it would also say that I could save £137.00 if I moved to a different tariff.

 

The "Good News" is not relevant to me as a customer but it does serve the purpose to mislead a customer to think that he/she is already on cheapest tariff.

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My argument is that they have used unfair trading practices of using obfuscating literature. If there was no literature then I would have explored other options. On the bill they used to write "Good News: You are already on the cheapest tariff in the current category". And then it would also say that I could save £137.00 if I moved to a different tariff.

 

The "Good News" is not relevant to me as a customer but it does serve the purpose to mislead a customer to think that he/she is already on cheapest tariff.

 

Up to you now to decide whether to proceed or not.

 

Might be their cheapest tariff, but if you are seeking to cover a consequential loss, they might challenge it, as already explained.

We could do with some help from you.

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