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C&WAL Complains To Ofcom Over High LLU Charges

Posted: 10th Jan, 2007 By: MarkJ
Cable & Wireless Access Limited has lodged a new complaint against BT with Ofcom. The information suggests that BT had been overcharging them for installation of unbunbled lines (LLU):

According to C&WA, when it connected new customers to fully unbundled local loops during the period 16 December 2004 to 30 June 2006, it submitted a “new provide order” to BT, which required that an engineer visit each and every site in question to install a new line (hereafter referred to as the “new provide service”).

C&WA considers that BT’s charge for the new provide service during this period was contrary to Conditions FA3 and FA9 because it did not reflect BT’s actually incurred costs and/or efficiently incurred costs and/or fair and reasonable costs.

In particular, C&WA states that in a significant number of cases, BT overcharged C&WA because a new line was not in fact required (and a site visit by an engineer was unnecessary) or, even where a new line was required, it was provided in an inefficient manner. C&WA further state that in certain cases it considers that BT may not actually have made a site visit but C&WA were still charged as if there had been a site visit.

C&WA has also stated that during this time, it requested a different service from BT which would connect customers to fully unbundled local loops but did not require that an engineer visit each and every site in question to install a new line (the “stopped line provide service”).

C&WA considers that BT did not provide the requested stopped line provide service as soon as reasonable practicable, in accordance with Condition FA1, despite repeated requests from C&WA that it do so. C&WA states that the fact that BT already provided a stopped line provide service for WLR services during this time is a material consideration in this respect.

It's understood that C&W and BT have attempted to resolve the dispute privately, yet failed. No doubt it will be sometime before Ofcom rules one way or the other. To date most unbundled lines have been used for a mixture of broadband and telephone access.
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