PhonepayPlus announces formal complaints procedure and appoints independent Lay Assessor

1 July 2010

PhonepayPlus today announced a formal policy and process to deal with complaints about the organisation and its conduct. We have appointed Hilary Bainbridge as the Lay Assessor who will independently review such complaints.

Any individual or organisation that has contact with PhonepayPlus can make a complaint about the regulator’s conduct. For example, a consumer who had complained to us about a premium rate service and thought that we had misunderstood a significant part of the original complaint could use this new process. Or a premium rate provider that thought we had not followed our own published procedures could also complain. The new process consists of two internal stages before the complaint can be formally referred to the Lay Assessor for review.

Hilary has over 25 years’ experience as an adjudicator, dealing with management issues and providing independent decisions on complaints about various organisations. Since 2005, she has been Waterways Ombudsman (adjudicating on complaints about British Waterways) and is a Member of the Council for the Property Ombudsman.

“Hilary’s background and extensive experience working as an independent adjudicator mean that she will offer a fair and consistent review of complaints we receive,” said Paul Whiteing, PhonepayPlus’ Chief Executive. “We always do our best to meet the needs of the people who contact us but occasionally things can go wrong – or we can fall short of our own high standards. It is important that there is an independent party to act as a final moderator in the process, if need be, and this new policy rightly offers a structured approach to dealing with any complaints that may arise.”

Hilary commented: “I am looking forward to helping to ensure that PhonepayPlus deals properly with both the public and the industry, in line with its own published procedures and processes. Having a good independent regulator, in whom all have confidence, is vitally important – especially when the sector is so complex and fast-moving. I hope that having an independent Lay Assessor to deal with complaints about PhonepayPlus will add to that confidence – in the interests of both the premium rate sector and those who use it.”

Please click here to view PhonepayPlus’ formal complaints policy and process.

Please click here to view Hilary Bainbridge’s full biography.