Ofcom consults on exercising discretion to not order repayment in LLU dispute

Last week Ofcom started a consultation in relation to LLU charges in which is intending to not exercise its discretion to order repayment of overcharges. The circumstances in which repayment is ordered is currently a very live issue with BT, the regulator Ofcom and the alternative fixed operators taking different positions on the issue in various cases. The positions …

Read more

Ofcom issue revised penalty guidelines

Ofcom today issued revised guidelines on the penalties they may impose on those breaching rules policed by Ofcom. The new guidelines replace prior guidelines dating from 2003 and apply to a rag-bag of over 40 potential contraventions, although significantly not competition law. In a departure from Ofcom’s default ‘if in doubt write a long document’ …

Read more

Ofcom revise dispute resolution guidelines

Ofcom yesterday published revised guidelines for the handling of regulatory disputes. Whilst these revised guidelines are ostensibly a response to the revised European Regulatory Framework, as implemented by the Electronic Communications and Wireless Telegraphy Regulations 2011 (SI 2011/1210), in reality they also address significant judicial criticism of Ofcom’s approach to dispute handling. The apogee of this criticism …

Read more

Ofcom has wide jurisdiction and discretion to accept and resolve disputes

The CAT today rejected BT’s arguments that Ofcom has a narrow jurisdiction to accept and resolve disputes referred to it by Communications Providers pursuant to Section 185 of the Communications Act 2003. The CAT joined two cases (one relating to ‘ladder pricing’  and one to charges for ethernet services above DSAC) in both of which BT …

Read more

UK implementation of revised EU telecoms (electronic communications) framework published

The UK’s Department for Culture, Media and Sport (and although not in the title, telecoms) today published its response to the consultation on implementation of the revised EU electronic communications framework in the UK. In contrast to the original introduction of the current EU Framework in 2003 which necessitated tearing up the Telecommunications Act 1984 …

Read more

Fresh evidence may be introduced in telecoms appeals

Yesterday the Court of Appeal confirmed (in British Telecommunications Plc v Office of Communications [2011] EWCA Civ 245 , judgment of 10 March 2011) that there was no basis for restricting the introduction of fresh evidence into an appeal against a decision of Ofcom made pursuant to the Communications Act 2003. The procedural point arose in one …

Read more

Rules applicable to all UK telecoms operators to change

Last week Ofcom started a consultation on revising the UK’s General Conditions of Entitlement and Universal Service Conditions. The consultation closes on 7 April, and will be followed by a statement, with implementation on or before 25 May 2011. The changes are part of the UK’s implementation of the revised European Framework for electronic communications. …

Read more