Part 1 – Code of Practice for Domestic and Small Business Customers

Introduction to our Company and Services

Equate Group Ltd is an independent company that delivers communications services to domestic and small business customers. While we may not provide all the component parts of our services ourselves, we do take responsibility for the services delivered to you. So we will liaise with our suppliers to ensure that any problems with their services are resolved promptly.


Purpose of this Code of Practice

This code informs you about our products, services, customer-care policies and where to find information about our charges and terms and conditions. This Code of Practice is published on our website www.equategroup.com. Additional copies are available on request and free of charge to any domestic and small business customer.


How to Contact Us

Please contact our Customer Service Team using one of the following:


By Phone: 0345 125 5400


Opening Hours – Monday to Friday 8.15am to 5pm


By Email: [email protected]


By Fax: 03451255401


By Letter: Customer Services, Equate Group Ltd, 6 Station Approach, Wendover, Bucks. HP22 6BN


Or via our website: www.equategroup.com


Our registered office address is: Equate Group Ltd, 6 Station Approach, Wendover, Bucks. HP22 6BN


Our Commitment to You


We are committed to giving you the highest quality of customer service. When we purchase our services from wholesale providers, we choose those providers carefully to ensure that you get a high-quality service. We make every reasonable effort to supply services that satisfy your requirements. We work to all relevant laws and regulations.


Our Products and Services

• Landline telephones

• Landline calls

• CPS – Carrier Pre-Selection

• WLR – Wholesale Line Rental

• ISDN – digital telephone lines

• Broadband access

• VoIP & IP telephony services

• Non-geographic numbers

• Intelligent Call Routing

• PA systems

• Internet

• Directory enquiries

• Mobile telephone and data services

• Public/private/business two-way radio mobile radio services/ Common Base Station Services

• Wide area/local paging services

• IT solutions

• WIFI Solutions

• Equipment and maintenance service


For more details on any of our products and services, or to place an order immediately, please contact our Customer Service Team on 0345 125 5400


Marketing We work to the principles in the British Code of Advertising, Sales Promotion and Direct Marketing, which are set out on the website www.cap.org.uk.


Terms and Conditions

When you subscribe to a service from Equate Group Ltd, we will send you our Standard Terms and Conditions and ask you to sign a contract, if applicable. If you have any questions, please phone our Customer Service Team on 0345 125 5400. We may carry out a credit check as part of our assessment procedures.


The minimum contract term for our services will be 36 months unless otherwise stated. We aim to provide services within an efficient timescale from your original request, subject to the availability and installation of any equipment. If we need to carry out a survey of your premises or lay additional cabling, we will inform you of the revised timescales as soon as we can.


Cancellation

If you decide to cancel your order or agreement before we have provided the services, you may do so without charge within 14 days of your order being placed. If you wish to terminate your contract within the minimum term of 36 months, please call our Customer Service Helpdesk on 0345 125 5400. We will charge you a termination fee as set out in your contract. After the minimum term you can cancel any service by calling our Customer Service Helpdesk on 0345 125 5400, giving us 90 days’ notice.


Faults and Repairs

Please call our Fault Service Team on 0345 125 5400 if you experience a fault with any of our services. For domestic customers we aim to have this investigated and repaired within 2 days.


For SMEs, the operational service levels we aim to achieve, including for the activation of a new service, restoration following loss of service and keeping pre-agreed engineer appointments, are set out in our contract


Compensation and Refund Policy


We do not offer automatic compensation payments in cases where the service level targets are not met and will assess any claim for compensation on a case by case basis. Any payment made will be on a purely discretionary basis.


We do not feel that fixed level compensation payments are appropriate for business customers, who we advise to seek other ways, such as insurance, to protect themselves against the impact of any loss of service.


Price Lists

Our pricing structure is available from our Customer Service Team on 0345 125 5400. We will write to you in advance if we change the pricing structure on your products and services.


Billing

We will bill you as per your contract. If you wish to change your method of payment at any time, please call our Customer Service Team. We provide itemised bills as part of our service to you.

If you have difficulty paying your bill, please contact us on 0345 125 5400 and we will try to arrange a different method of payment. We will do all we can to help our residential and small business customers to manage their bills and avoid disconnection. In any event, you will be given 48 hours notice of any decision to disconnect your services.



Moving Home or Office

Please call our Customer Service Team on 0345 125 5400 no later than 30 days before your move date. We will amend your account and billing requirements as necessary. We will endeavour to offer you the same telephone number to minimise disruption.


Number Porting

Equate Group Ltd recognise that keeping your existing telephone numbers may be important to you. If you move your business to us and wish to keep the number that you have with your old provider, we will arrange it if you ask us. We will work with you to ensure that the services are switched over at a convenient and appropriate time. For more information, please call our Customer Service Team on 0345 125 5400.


Directory Entries

You are entitled to a Directory Entry listing (including an entry in the Phone Book) for both your fixed and mobile telephone numbers. If you do want your details included, please contact our Customer Service Team on 0345 125 5400.


Complaints

We make every effort to ensure that our customers are happy with the level of service, and the products and service they receive from us. However, despite our best efforts, things can go wrong. We take customer complaints very seriously and aim to resolve them quickly and efficiently.


Our Code of Practice on Complaint Handling and Dispute Resolution explains how customers can complain. The code also provides information on how we deal with complaints and your right to take unresolved complaints to Alternative Dispute Resolution. You can find a copy of our Complaints Code www.equategroup.com Alternatively, copies are available free of charge and on request from our Customer Service Team on 0345 125 5400.


Services for People with Special Needs

We are committed to helping all our customers to communicate easily. We offer the following additional services on request for customers who are vulnerable or who may have a disability:


• Copies of bills, contracts and this Code in an accessible format


Data Protection


We comply fully with our obligations under the Data Protection Act 2018.


Part 2 – Code of Practice for Calls to Premium Rate Service, Unbundled Tariff and Personal Numbers

Purpose of this Code of Practice

This code informs you, our domestic and small business customers, about our policies on providing information about Premium Rate Service (PRS) calls and on our charging policy for calls to PRS numbers.

Unbundled Tariff Numbers

Unbundled Tariff Numbers are non geographic numbers starting with 084, 087, 090, 091, 098, or 118 which are used to provide a range of information and entertainment services and are charged to your telephone bill.

Charges for these services are made up of two parts, a Service Charge and an Access Charge and the total is added to your telephone bill. You will see the Service Charge advertised by the company providing the service alongside the number.Depending on the type of number called, the Service Charge can be up to £3.60 per minute, or £6 per call or per text (including VAT).

The Access Charge is retained by us, your phone company. Our charges for calling these services are shown in our price list, which is available on request from our Customer Services Team on 0345 125 5400. Unbundled Tariff numbers in the 084, 087, 090, 091, 098, or 118 ranges are not included in your monthly call minutes allowance.

Personal Numbers

Personal Numbers are numbers starting with 070. Calls to Personal Numbers are charged at the same rate as for mobile numbers. Calls to Personal Numbers are not included in your monthly call minutes allowance.

Controlled Premium Rate Services

Controlled Premium rate services (CPRS) are Unbundled Tariff numbers which cost 7p per minute or more. UK-based CPRS numbers are normally prefixed by “09” or “118”. Numbers starting 087 are also designated as Premium Rate numbers and subject to PRS regulation when they cost 7p per minute or more. Typical services include TV votelines, mobile ringtone downloads, technical helplines, charity fund-raising and adult entertainment. Calls to 118 services are capped at £3.65 for a 90 second call (including VAT) plus our Access Charge.

If you have a problem with Premium Rate Services, we can help. We can provide advice on checking the telephone number of any PRS charges that appear on your bill and will try to help you identify the premium rate service provider. We can use call barring to restrict access to “09” numbers. Please call our Customer Service Team on 0345 125 5400 for advice on this. We can give you a factsheet on PRS.

You can also ask for help from the Phone-paid Services Authority (PSA) which is the industry-funded regulatory body for Premium Rate Services. PSA operates a Code of Practice that sets out standards for the operation of PRS. You can use the PSA website at www.psauthority.org.uk to check PRS numbers direct and find contact details for the company in question or to submit a complaint. PSA has the legal powers to require a provider of PRS to amend its service or promotional material (or both) and can also order refunds and impose penalties on service providers for breaches of the PSA Code. For other ways to contact Phone-paid Services Authority, see the “Useful addresses” section below.

If you are unhappy with the help you have received from us on a problem with PRS, please contact Quintin Davis on 0345 125 5400 who has responsibility for compliance with our code of practice for PRS. You may also complain using the complaints procedure set out in our complaints code including, ultimately, referring your complaint to Ombudsman Services.

The Telephone Preference Service

If you don’t want to get sales and marketing calls you have not requested, you can add your details to a list run by the Telephone Preference Service (TPS). If your number is on the list, it is illegal for a company to call you for marketing purposes. You can contact the Telephone Preference Service via www.tpsonline.org.uk or by telephoning 0845 070 0707.

Useful Addresses

The Ombudsman Services

3300 Daresbury Park, Daresbury, Warrington, WA4 4HS

T: 0330 440 1614

E: [email protected]

W: www.ombudsman-services.org


Ofcom

Riverside House, 2a Southwark Bridge Road, London, SE1 9HA

T: 020 7981 3040 or 0300 123 3333

E: [email protected]

W: www.ofcom.org.uk


Phone-paid Services Authority

40 Bank Street London, E14 5NR

T: 0800 500 212 or 020 7940 7474

E: [email protected]

W: www.psauthority.org.uk


Telephone Preference Service

DMA House, 70 Margaret Street, London W1W 8SS

T: 0345 070 0707

E: [email protected]

W: www.tpsonline.org.uk


Federation of Communication Services (FCS)

The Grainger Suite, Dobson House, Regent Centre, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE3 3PF

T: 020 7186 5432

E: [email protected]

W: www.fcs.org.uk

License Number 2434

Correct at time of printing, published November 2020


FCS membership equate grou