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Joining the scheme

We are here to resolve complaints from consumers as quickly as possible; to work with members; help members improve their service; and reduce the complaints members receive.

We do this by:

  • providing every opportunity for members to resolve complaints with customers  
  • making available regular detailed reports about the types of complaints members are receiving to identify areas of improvement  
  • providing information about best practice complaint handling procedures and member legal obligations  
  • undertaking systemic investigations to identify issues that may affect many consumers  
  • providing regular updates informing members about changes in our processes and the law.  

Joining the TIO Scheme

Under Sections 128 and 132 of the Telecommunications (Consumer Protection and Services Standards) Act 1999, all carriers and eligible carriage service providers have a legal obligation to join and comply with the Scheme.

This Document sets out how the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman deals with:

  • Failure or refusal by a carrier or carriage service provider to join the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman Scheme
  • Failure of a member of the Scheme to comply with the Terms of Reference or Complaint Handling Procedures.

Failure to join the Scheme

If we become aware that a carrier or carriage service provider is not a Member, but should be, we contact that organisation and ask it become a Member by joining the Scheme.

We will send all necessary forms to the organisation and answer any questions it has about membership.

We expect the organisation to join the Scheme within 5 business days of our request.  

If the organisation has not made an application to join the scheme after 5 business days, we will send a reminder and give another 5 business days to complete the process of joining.  The reminder will warn the organisation that we will refer it to the ACMA if it does not join the scheme within the additional 10 business days.

If an organisation refuses to join the Scheme or does not respond within 10 business days of our request for it to join the Scheme, we will refer the organisation to the ACMA.