The purpose of these Procedures is to ensure procedural fairness in the TIO’s handling of Complaints.
TIO Officers must receive, classify, and escalate Complaints in accordance with the TIO Complaint Handling Procedures - Classification and Escalation.
When a Member believes that a Complaint has not been classified or escalated in accordance with TIO Complaint Handling Procedures, it can submit a Reclassification Request to have the Complaint reclassified.
If the TIO declines a Reclassification Request the Member can ask for a review of the decision by an independent Reclassification Review team.
The Reclassification Request must be in writing, and sent to the TIO Officer who made the classification or escalation decision that is the subject of the Request. Members are encouraged to make requests as soon as practicable after becoming aware of the classification or escalation decision.
1.2The Reclassification Request should include the following:
- the TIO reference number for the Complaint
- the name of the consumer
- the name of the TIO Officer that made the classification or escalation decision, and
- the reasons why the Member believes the Complaint should be reclassified.
If a Member makes a Reclassification Request verbally, the relevant TIO Officer will:
- ask the Member to make the request in writing, and
- give information about what the request should include.
No action will be taken on a Reclassification Request unless it is made in writing.
The Member can provide evidence to support its Request.
As a guide, reasons for reclassification could include:
- the matter is out of the TIO’s jurisdiction
- the matter was resolved before the TIO registered a Complaint
- the Complaint has been registered in the Member’s name incorrectly
- the same Complaint has been registered more than once, or
- there has been a procedural error, for example:
- the Complaint was escalated for non-response when a response had been received
- the Complaint was escalated for non-response within the standard timeframe, but a public holiday had not been taken into account
- the consumer contacted the TIO to raise the Complaint without contacting the Member about the issue first
- the TIO Officer did not advise the Member in writing of a conciliation or investigation, or
- the TIO Officer did not consider a piece of relevant evidence provided to the TIO.
The TIO aims to assess a Reclassification Request within 2 business days.
If a Reclassification Request is complex, the TIO Manager may need more time to undertake an assessment. In this case the TIO Manager will regularly update the Member about the progress of the assessment.
3.0 Assessment of Reclassification Requests
A Reclassification Request will be referred by the TIO Officer to an appropriate TIO Manager, who will assess the Request with reference to all information about the Complaint that the TIO has at the time of the assessment.
The TIO Manager may ask the consumer and Member for more information if he or she needs it to fully assess the Reclassification Request.
When, after assessment, the TIO Manager is of the view the Complaint has not been correctly classified, he or she will reclassify the Complaint.
When the TIO Manager makes a decision about a Reclassification Request, he or she will write to the Member and explain the decision.
When a decision about a Reclassification Request will affect the consumer, the TIO Manager will contact the consumer and explain the decision.
4.0 Member’s right of review
When the TIO Manager declines a Reclassification Request, the Member can ask for this decision to be reviewed. Review Requests must be in writing, and the Member should give reasons why it believes the decision is wrong, or any other reasons why the Complaint should be reclassified.
Reviews are conducted by the Reclassification Review team and take approximately 15 business days. Review timeframes are indicative only, and more time may be needed depending on the complexity of the Complaint.
Reviews will be assessed with reference to all information about the Complaint that the TIO has at the time of the review.
The Reclassification Review team may ask the consumer and Member for more information if it is needed to assess the Review Request.
When, after assessment, the Reclassification Review team is of the view that the complaint has not been correctly classified, the Complaint will be reclassified.
5.0 Complaint handling during assessment of a Reclassification Request or Review Request
The TIO will generally not suspend its handling of the Complaint on the basis of a Reclassification Request or Review Request. The TIO requires the Member to continue to participate in the resolution process, including by providing all responses and evidence requested, suspending credit management on disputed amounts, and responding to the consumer’s claims or concerns, especially if there appears to be any ongoing detriment to the consumer.
If the TIO decides to suspend its handling of the Complaint while the TIO Manager assesses the Reclassification Request or a Reclassification Review is conducted, the Member must continue to suspend credit management on disputed amounts until advised by the TIO.
6.0 Payment of TIO invoices during assessment of a Reclassification Request or Review Request
The TIO requires payment of all TIO invoices, consistent with the Member’s legal obligations under the TIO Memorandum and Articles of Association, irrespective of whether the Member is waiting for a decision on a Reclassification Request or a Review Request.
The TIO requires Members to pay invoices within 30 days of receipt.
When a Reclassification Request or Review Request is approved by the TIO the next invoice will be adjusted to reflect the correct classification.
Effective Date: 5 July, 2010
Updated on: 2 July, 2012
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