The TCP Code
The Telecommunications Consumer Protections (TCP) Code C628:2015 applies to all Carriage Service Providers (CSPs) in Australia. The Code equally applies to all Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and Internet Access Providers (IAPs) as they fall within the category of CSPs.
Compliance with the Code Compliance Framework is monitored by Communications Compliance and the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA). The ACMA enforces compliance with the TCP Code.
The Telecommunications (Consumer Protection and Service Standards) Act 1999 (Cth) requires Carriers and CSPs to enter into and comply with the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) Scheme. The TIO provides free-of-charge dispute resolution services to residential and small business consumers.
The TCP Code 2015 contains a set of rules designed to protect the rights of consumers and to promote good customer service and fair outcomes for consumers. It clearly outlines the obligations of retail CSPs.
The Code consists of an Introductory Statement and 9 Chapters.
Chapters 1 to 3 contain general rules around the functioning of the Code, definitions and general rules which apply to each of the subsequent chapters.
Chapter 4 provides rules for consumer sales, service and contracts, i.e. it includes obligations around information provision, advertising, selling practices, contracting, dealing with customers with different needs and customer service.
Chapter 5 sets out the obligations relating to providing customers with bills and billing information.
Chapter 6 contains rules for the provision and management of credit in connection with a telecommunications service, the denial and restriction of access to services, financial hardship and credit management tools such as spend alerts.
Chapter 7 sets out the obligations for providers that relate to consumers changing to another service provider or to consumers being transferred as a result of sale of business or reorganisation.
Chapter 8 contains rules for handling and resolving complaints from consumers including obligations around managing, monitoring, analysing, recording and reporting complaints.
Chapter 9 contains provisions around the implementation of the Code Compliance Framework. This includes the role of Communications Compliance as well as the compliance and monitoring arrangements put in place to enhance compliance, customer service and protection, transparency and self-regulation of the telecommunications industry.
The Code has been developed by Communications Alliance Ltd. Please click here for more information.
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