Burning through cash - £2.5 million fine for British Gas
You know when you make a complaint to a large company and you get the distinct impression that they're not taking you seriously, giving you half-baked platitudes and chucking your concern on a big pile marked 'IGNORE'? Well, it seems that British Gas have been doing exactly that.
And because we - the Great British public - are not particularly good at organising ourselves and going 'round to the head office to attack the management with crowbars, Ofgem have decided that they'll smack a few bums for us instead.
Just how red is the posterior of British Gas? £2.5million's worth of handprint.
Ofgem have said that the energy supplier didn't re-open cases when customers indicated their complaint had not been dealt with adequately and, that they also failed to give customers with unresolved complaints any details about resolution services which are provided by the Energy Ombudsman.
Sarah Harrison of Ofgem says: "We warned the industry in March that we would be backing up our plans to reform the retail market with a tough approach to enforcement."
British Gas, naturally, are outraged at all this saying that Ofgem's finding was "totally disproportionate", but they did have the brass balls to admit that they may have failed on the issue of dealing with micro businesses. They say: "We knew we had an issue here which is why we flagged it to Ofgem. After a £4m investment, we are now confident we meet all of our regulatory requirements."
That's the lovely, thoughtful British Gas there, who decided to hike up our bills by 18% for seemingly no good reason. They're probably sulking after they got slapped with a £1m fine for misreporting the amount of electricity supplied under the Government's Renewables Obligation.
What a lovely lot.