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Openreach didn't install new point due to lockdown now refusing to come back

Josswilson
Dabbler
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎09-08-2021

Openreach didn't install new point due to lockdown now refusing to come back

When going with Plusnet initially in September last year, I paid the additional £75 for a new socket to be installed. My current master socket is in the kitchen and as I was planning on installing a new kitchen needed removing. When the engineer arrived he told me that as I still had a working socket he wasn't going to install a new one for me due to being in lockdown and that someone would be in touch after Christmas.
I had a conversation with someone from Plusnet over Twitter who basically said I'd had the service I paid for and wasn't entitled to anything else. Openreach are saying to talk to my provider so now I'm stuck with my master socket detached from the wall and a cable trailing across my living room. I feel like I've been conned out of £75 and to say I'm unhappy with Plusnet is an understatement. Anyone have any advice as to what I can do?
19 REPLIES 19
dvorak
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Re: Openreach didn't install new point due to lockdown now refusing to come back


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BD
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Re: Openreach didn't install new point due to lockdown now refusing to come back

Hi @Josswilson, thanks for getting in touch and I'm sorry to hear you're still in need of a master socket relocation.

I can confirm your first invoice in setting up the service with us wouldn't include a master relocation charge. If your initial fee was around £75 then this would be made up of £49.99 for the installation charge and this occurs if an engineer needs to go out and activate a stopped line or a new line is needed to be installed. If the engineer can pick up a working phone socket when testing after activating the line then  no visit to the property would b carried out. The remainder of the initial fee you paid will have been for your first months charges ahead of time already wouldn't have come into effect until your services went live.

Only if there's no phone socket being detected when the engineer tests would he visit the property and if a new one is needed to be installed then a location preference could be asked. I'm sincerely sorry if you've been advised otherwise up until now but unfortunately there's a separate stand alone fee of £160 if a master socket relocation is needed.
Although these were put on hold during the pandemic, after checking I can confirm these appointment types are now going ahead as normal.

I'd advise then, if you're looking to arrange this to give our provisioning team a call via the details below who will be able to arrange this for you.
They can be reached on 0800 432 0200 and are available from Monday - Friday 8am-8pm or Saturday 9am - 5pm.

I hope this helps.
 

Josswilson
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Posts: 10
Registered: ‎09-08-2021

Re: Openreach didn't install new point due to lockdown now refusing to come back

Checking_your_line___Plusnet.png

Josswilson
Dabbler
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎09-08-2021

Re: Openreach didn't install new point due to lockdown now refusing to come back

Would you admit the wording used here during the sign up is at best incredibly misleading and at worst an outright lie? Especially the section "or want another installing"?

 

This is the option I chose when signing up. Where does it tell me there that even if I pay the installation fee, I won't get a new line installed if I already have a working one?

adam945
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Re: Openreach didn't install new point due to lockdown now refusing to come back

I understand where you're coming from here @Josswilson. We do have customers who do have two separate lines going into their properties, and hypothetically, if you were to want one now, then the engineer would install it at a place of your choosing, given that the one you currently have is in use.

Saying that, as there was no service in use at the point of sign up, the engineer has installed the service to the working socket that you already have in the property. This is standard practice across all new sign ups, and with every provider whom utilise Openreach's infrastructure.

Please let me know if you'd like to proceed with a master socket relocation, I'd be able to give you a quick cal, take payment, and get an appointment arranged.

 

 Adam
 Plusnet Help Team - Leeds
Josswilson
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Posts: 10
Registered: ‎09-08-2021

Re: Openreach didn't install new point due to lockdown now refusing to come back

If that's the case why take £75 off me without explaining what I was paying for. The whole thing is very confusing. What have I actually paid for?

The socket that is currently in use I need to remove as it's in the way of the kitchen I've had installed. I've had to remove it from the wall and it's now hanging loose at the bottom of my stairs. Not ideal.

I could have removed it before the engineer arrived but that should not really be necessary. 

I still need a new line installing but there's absolutely no way I'm paying £160 for it. 

adam945
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Re: Openreach didn't install new point due to lockdown now refusing to come back

It's really not something we dictate @Josswilson

As @BD has already pointed out, the £75 you paid upon sign up is broken down into two separate parts.

  • £49.99 - this covers the engineer fee, as an engineer was required to activate your line. This fee is also application when restarting certain stopped lines, even if access to the property is not required, it's simply to cover the cost of the practical engineering work required to activate a service.
  • £25.99 - This covers your first month of service. We don't run credit checks here so we take a month's service in advance, and then bill you in advance every month.

Just to reiterate, if Openreach receive a New Line Installation order (Provide) and find a working and spare socket in the property, this will always be used during the appointment. Looking through the account also, there's no mention of this on any notes prior to the complaint raised yesterday.

 Adam
 Plusnet Help Team - Leeds
Josswilson
Dabbler
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎09-08-2021

Re: Openreach didn't install new point due to lockdown now refusing to come back

I was told by the engineer who came that someone from open reach would be in touch. I spoke to open reach directly over Twitter, who reassured me someone would come out after lockdown has ended. Now lockdown has ended, they're telling me to get in touch with my service provider. 

I didn't need a line "activation" I wanted a new line installing. That's what I thought I was paying for and nothing during the sign up process or any communication I had after sign up, right up to the point of the engineer actually being in my house made me think any differently. 

In fact, up until speaking to you guys (over twitter again), I still thought I'd paid for a new line installing. Now you're telling me I haven't and the £49.99 I paid was to "Activate my line" well, my line was already active (you already knew my line was active as it says so during sign up) so the least you could do is refund me the £49.99.

adam945
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Re: Openreach didn't install new point due to lockdown now refusing to come back

No @Josswilson. during the sign up process, if done online, our system conducts what we call a QLA - query line availability. Our system did not find any line whatsoever, we did not know whether you even had a master socket within the property or not. Our system then places what we call a New Line Installation order with Openreach, hence the £49.99 engineer charge.

We would have had no idea whether a master socket was present or not until you've recently reached out, as the order clearly shows that an engineer attended. The line will have been disconnected at the exchange with the previous provider, otherwise it would have appeared as a "stopped line". As practical engineering work was required to activate the line, the £49.99 charge will stand.

I can empathise though, in that the term "installation" can lead you to believe that a brand new line all together will be installed, however this is not the case, and that if a working master socket is detected within the property, the line will always provisioned to that.

 

 Adam
 Plusnet Help Team - Leeds
Josswilson
Dabbler
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎09-08-2021

Re: Openreach didn't install new point due to lockdown now refusing to come back

This is not the case, I specifically selected new line and voluntarily paid the fee on sign up. There was service to the master socket and this was confirmed by one of your staff (on twitter) who said if I hadn't paid the fee I would have been able to stay on the same line. 

You're obviously not going to do anything for me so I'll have to take this to the ombudsman. I feel your signup page is deliberately misleading for a customer like me, who wanted a new line installing to replace an existing, functional line which you are planning on removing. 

Feel very let down by you guys to be honest, your customer service is woeful.

adam945
Plusnet Alumni (retired)
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Re: Openreach didn't install new point due to lockdown now refusing to come back

I'd like to have a look at the Twitter correspondence if that's okay @Josswilson

Please can you send me a Private Message with your Twitter name and username so that I can look it up on my system? I'll have a look at what was said and will follow up on this immediately.

 Adam
 Plusnet Help Team - Leeds
Josswilson
Dabbler
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎09-08-2021

Re: Openreach didn't install new point due to lockdown now refusing to come back

It was via DM and looking at the signature it was possibly you who I was speaking to which explains why you're being so unhelpful again. here is the DM in question

"As discussed, you requested that a new line be installed at your property, which was fulfilled by ourselves. Had you requested that we take over the existing NOW TV line, which at the time was active, you will not have had to pay the Installation fee. -Adam"

Mustrum
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Re: Openreach didn't install new point due to lockdown now refusing to come back

@Josswilson  a simple question for you, did you keep the same phone number you had from NOW ?

 

If no, you have had a new line = the work would have been done at the exchange and used the physical already installed wires to your home.

Josswilson
Dabbler
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎09-08-2021

Re: Openreach didn't install new point due to lockdown now refusing to come back

No idea as I don't use my landline but this is kind of missing the point. 

I thought I was paying for one service and got something else. The new line installation is never properly explained throughout the signup process.

Before Plusnet take your money they should explain they won't install a new socket if you already have an active one in place (even though I planned to remove it once I had a new socket installed). If they had explained that and offered me the £160 option in the first place I could have made an informed decision. I'm now facing the prospect of paying £210 for a new socket which is ludicrous.