Newcastle’s Business Energy Claims (BEC) is asserting that, despite governmental proposals which will widen the scope of the Energy Ombudsman, this still does not go far enough in providing adequate support to all businesses affected by energy mis-selling and inadequate complaint resolution. Head of claims, Hannah Stewart, stresses the importance of businesses being able to hold their energy suppliers accountable as market prices climb and the firm believes they offer the necessary support for those who receive insufficient resolution from the Ombudsman complaint service. Companies with fewer than 50 employees can now access the Ombudsman if they are having issues with their energy supplier or if no resolution has been reached. The new proposals aim to extend this service to a further 200,000 businesses.
The changes represent the widening of eligibility, with only “micro-businesses” with less than 10 employees being allowed access to the Ombudsman service previously. However, the 84% annual increase in Ombudsman complaints in 2023 underlined the need for extending better representation for all businesses. Minister of Energy Consumers and Affordability, Amanda Solloway, highlights the government’s determination to provide proper support and service for businesses that interact with energy suppliers.
BEC is urging for more support to be available for businesses affected by inadequate complaint resolution or energy mis-selling. While BEC supports the governmental proposal to extend eligibility for the Energy Ombudsman, they assert that many companies remain without adequate recourse. The firm believes it can support companies after an insufficient Ombudsman resolution. The proposal will extend coverage from “micro-companies” with fewer than 10 employees to companies with fewer than 50 employees. The extensions aim to provide a solution for 200,000 businesses.