Customer Complaints Policy
The company is dedicated to providing excellent customer service and maintain a healthy customer relationship.
Therefore the company has a Complaints Policy to ensure all complaints are handled as efficiently and effectively as possible.
The following outlines our policy and procedures for the handling of verbal and written complaints. This Policy is compliant with the ACIF Industry Code on Complaint Handling. This policy forms part of our Standard Form of Agreement
Free of Charge
We will not charge you for dealing with your complaint in most instances, and we will never charge
you without telling you first.
We may charge you to recover our costs in very specific circumstances only, i.e. we may charge you where you request information that was collected more than two years ago or where you request information that is not free of charge as per our Standard Form Customer Contract or our Critical Information Summary.
If cost recovery charges apply, we will tell you before charging you (and you may of course choose
not to pay and discontinue your complaint) and we will inform you about your options for external
dispute resolution, e.g. the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO).
- The company will provide an efficient, fair and structured mechanism for handling complaints.
- To provide our customers with access to the complaints handling process, including those customers with disabilities and special needs.
- The company will keep customers informed as to the progress of their complaint and the expected timeframe for resolution.
- We will regularly review our complaints so that we can improve our standard of customer service.
- Whilst an investigation into a matter is taking place, we will not demand payment of genuinely disputed amounts.
Handling Your Complaint
- Upon receiving a verbal or written complaint, we will acknowledge your matter via telephone or in writing within 5 business days.
- Of course you can appoint an authorized representative or advocate to make a complaint on your behalf. For help with how to appoint an authorized representative, please go to the Authorized Representative Form.
- We will keep you informed of the progress of your complaint, proposed actions and the expected timeframe for resolution.
- Our aim is to resolve complaints in a timely manner and we will generally resolve a matter within 30 calendar days.
- Complex complaints may take longer than 30 calendar days to resolve. In these cases, we will regularly update you on the progress and likely timeframe for resolution.
- We will advise you of the outcome of your complaint. Where you have requested us to do so, we will advise you in writing.
- We may impose a charge for handling your complaint in special circumstances. For example, we may charge you a fee where your complaint requires us to retrieve archived records.
- If we think your complaint requires a charge, we will not impose one without discussion with you. If your complaint is upheld in your favour, and we have charged you complaint handling fees, we will refund you the full amount of the fees charged within 30 days.
If you have a complaint regarding any aspect of your account or dealings with The company, we urge you to telephone Customer Service in the first instance.
Our Consultant will give you their name so you know with whom you are speaking. Our objective is to resolve the vast majority of enquiries or complaints during your first contact with us.
You will be charged at a local rate. If you prefer to put your complaint in writing, we will respond to your letter by telephone and will confirm any details in writing if you request us to do so.
Should you not be satisfied with the response tendered to you, you may ask for your complaint to be escalated to the next level of Management. You can forward correspondence via mail to us or alternatively, you can email your matter to our management team.
Complaints made to The company are overseen by our customer service management. This area is committed to supporting the above areas and carrying out reviews of policy and process. Customer Service Management will attend to matters that have not been resolved within the complaints process. If you are not satisfied with the response tendered to you, you may ask Customer Service Management to escalate your complaint to the Senior Management.
If your complaint is not resolved to your satisfaction by The company and depending on the nature of your complaint you may refer your complaint to the following outside bodies:
What if Your Compliant is Urgent?
Your complaint will be treated as urgent:
- if you have applied for being in financial hardship under our Financial Hardship Policy and the issue you are complaining about directly contributes to the Financial Hardship you are experiencing, or
- if your service has been disconnected or is about to be disconnected and due process has not been followed, or
- if you are receiving Priority Assistance (e.g. because of a severe medical condition) for the service you are complaining about.
In this case we will agree with you on how to address the issue and implement all required actions to fix the issue within 2 working days. If there is a delay, we will explain why, provide you with a new expected timeframe, and if it is a longer delay also inform you about your options for external dispute resolution such as the TIO.
OFFICE OF THE FEDERAL PRIVACY COMMISSIONER
The Office of the Federal Privacy Commissioner (“OFPC”) can assist you with all matters related to privacy.
To lodge a complaint with the OFPC you can call 1300 363 992 or write to:
Office of the Privacy Commissioner
GPO Box 5218
SYDNEY NSW 2001.
For certain telecommunications and trade practices issues, you may lodge a complaint to:
- The Fair Trading Office in your state;
- The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission; and/or
- You may also seek independent legal advice from a solicitor as an alternative avenue for resolution.
The Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (“TIO”) is an independent and free alternate dispute resolution scheme for residential and small business consumers in respect of disputes over which the TlO has jurisdiction. The TlO views itself as an office of last resort; accordingly, it should not be used as a first resort and should only be used once all other reasonable avenues are exhausted.
The TIO seeks the co-operation of BOTH parties through an alternative dispute resolution process to achieve an outcome that is fair and reasonable. To lodge a complaint with the TlO you can call 1800 062 058 or write to:
P O Box 276
Collins Street West
MELBOURNE VIC 8007
Alternatively, you can visit www.tio.com.au
What is the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman?
The Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) is an independent dispute resolution service that can assist you if you have been unable to resolve your complaint with your phone or internet company directly.
What kind of complaints can the TIO deal with?
The TIO deals with complaints about telecommunications services. Some of these include billing problems, telephone faults, poor customer service, mobile phone contract problems and Internet access difficulties.
The TIO also has a role in handling objections by owners or occupiers of land on which a carrier intends to undertake land inspection, or installation of certain types of facility or maintenance activities. Information about these objection processes, including the strict timeframes involved, is available in ACMA’s fact sheet Installation of telecommunications facilities, or by contacting the TIO.
When should I go to the TIO?
If you have a complaint about your phone or internet company, the first step you should take is to contact the company in question and try and resolve it directly with them. Usually the problem can be resolved at this stage and there is no reason to take the issue further. If you are not happy with the way your complaint is dealt with at first contact, you should escalate the matter within the phone company by asking to speak to a supervisor or manager. However, if the company doesn’t respond to your complaint, or if you are unhappy with the resolution of the problem or think that their solution is unfair, then you can make a complaint to the TIO. The TIO will only handle the complaint if you have first contacted your phone or internet company.
How long does it take for the TIO to deal with a complaint?
More than 90 per cent of complaints to the TIO are sorted out within a few days, but the more complex cases can take a few weeks. It depends on the nature of the complaint.
How much does it cost?
The TIO service is free. There is no charge to have a complaint investigated by the TIO.
Who pays for the TIO?
The TIO is funded entirely by the telecommunications industry. The TIO bills telephone and internet companies according to the number of complaints received against them.
How do I contact the TIO?
You can get more information about the TIO on the internet at www.tio.com.au or by calling 1800 062 058. If you don’t speak English, you can call the Commonwealth Government’s Translating and Interpreting Services on 131 450 and ask to be put through to the TIO. The TIO pays for the cost of using the interpreter service. The TIO also has fact sheets available in different languages.
More information is available on the ACMA website – www.acma.gov.au