We really don't have all of the details to comment on the case itself - what was mentioned in parliament seems like a clear cut case of an ISP mis-selling, but my experience of the Ombudsman service is that they would always favour the customer so the case must have been pretty clear to favour the ISP in this case.
Ed Vaizey is reported as confirming this: “In most cases, the ombudsman proves to be a powerful and effective piece of consumer protection. It does work, and figures show that it often works to the consumer’s benefit"
However, the next comment really does puzzle me, as he is reported as saying:
“It seems astonishing that a telecoms company would pursue a man in his 70s … Having won its war with Mr Jones through the ombudsman, it should recognise that its corporate social responsibility should dictate that it should waive this bill.”
For a start it seems odd to say "having won its war with Mr Jones". It is not a war to expect a customer to pay their bill. Also, it was Mr Jones that pursued a case against the ISP via ADR and the ISP has has to pay for that even though they won!
But surely, having won the case, it is perfectly sensible, normal, and even responsible to the shareholders as required by the Companies Act for the ISP to expect the customer to then pay up.
It seems that Ed Vaizey is saying that even when a third party has confirmed that the money is owed, because someone is in his 70s it is some corporate social responsibility to waive the bill?
Does this mean that when I get to 70 I can simply choose not to pay bills, and even if taken to court, or some other third party arbitration, I should still not have to pay them?
What exactly is Ed Vaizey saying here?