I had not realised this was quite the official stance before, but it was confirmed today.
If a BT SFI (Special Faults Investigation) engineer goes out for a broadband fault, and tests the line to SIN349 (which is a standard for the quality of the copper pair for voice), then even if he goes on and fixes a reported broadband issue, the visit will be charged by BT (Wholesale).
So that means the engineer found and fixed a broadband issue in the broadband service we buy and yet they charge for fixing it, and that is, it seems, official BT policy to do so.
They have pushed SFI step by step over the years getting more and more outrageous, but this is really pushing too far. They offer no other choice to fix a fault in the service we buy apart from booking an SFI engineer visit. It used to be that if they found and fixed the issue they did not charge, but now they will actually charge for that engineer to fix a broadband fault, even though we have paid for a working broadband service already.
Just to be crystal clear here - if there is an issue with the broadband, as opposed to the phone line itself (i.e. line meets SIN349), BT have no way for us to get that fixed other than an SFI engineer, for which they will charge in that case. They have no option to actually fix the broadband fault otherwise.
I don't think that would get past a judge somehow!
Hopefully we can work with BT to resolve this broken policy - we are working on that, and it may be a chance for our Wholesale Broadband Buyers Forum to get started.
What are other ISPs doing about being charged to fix a fault?