Customer Protection

Customer Contract

The Customer Contract provides the terms under which TasWater provide, where available, services to you, our customers. The Contract also sets out rights and obligations including your rights in any dispute with us. This Contract is a legally enforceable document and is a requirement of the Water and Sewerage Industry Act 2008, Section 60 (2).  "A customer of a regulated entity is taken to have entered into a Customer Contract with the regulated entity, for the provision of water services and sewerage services, or either of those services as provided for under the Customer Contract."  There is no written formal contract, rather by definition of Section 60, you are deemed to have a contract with TasWater for the supply of water and/or sewerage services to your property and as a customer, you are liable to pay for the services provided.

Customer Service Code

The Customer Service Code issued by the Tasmanian Economic Regulator provides a clear understanding of the services provided by TasWater and the rights and responsibilities of all customers. A copy of the Code is available on the Economic Regulator’s website here.

Customer Charter

TasWater’s first Customer Charter was issued in October 2013. The Charter has been updated to reflect the outcomes of the Economic Regulator’s 2015 Price Determination, with a summary version also available.

Key matters which have been updated in the Charter include:

  • Customer classes (section 9) – updated to reflect refinements approved by the Economic Regulator as part of the 2015 Price Determination
  • Minimum service standards (sections 13 and 15) - references to transitional service standards have been removed and the new minimum service standards updated and approved by the Economic Regulator as part of the 2015 Price Determination have been included
  • Descriptions of water and sewerage charges (section 18) – updated to reflect refinements approved by the Economic Regulator as part of the 2015 Price Determination
  • Complaints, Disputes & Customer Enquiries (section 19) – updated to reflect the new Complaints, Enquiries and Disputes Management Policy approved by the Economic Regulator as part of the 2015 Price Determination
  • Billing (section 20) – updated to reflect recent changes made to the Customer Service Code regarding the timing of the issue of bills and the charges that may be contained within a bill.

Customer Charter July 2015

Customer Charter Summary July 2015

Financial Hardship

TasWater recognises that residential customers may experience times of financial hardship due to changes in circumstances beyond their control. TasWater is committed to helping customers who have the intent, but not the capacity to make payments in accordance with the terms outlined on water and wastewater accounts.

Consistent with the requirements of Tasmanian Water Law and the Customer Service Code, TasWater has a Financial Hardship Policy that offers a range of assistance methods and programs to customers including:

  • payment options
  • advice on concessions
  • water conservation advice to lower water accounts
  • a referral service so that customers may access further help.

A copy of TasWater’s Financial Hardship Policy is provided here.

Complaints, Disputes and Enquiries Management

A complaint is defined in accordance with the Australian Standards as an “expression of dissatisfaction made to an organisation, related to its products, or the complaints process itself, where a response or resolution is explicitly or implicitly expected”.

TasWater monitors complaints on an ongoing basis. The approach to complaints management is guided by eight principles:

Respect – TasWater respects a customers’ right to complain and will manage all relevant personal information in a confidential manner
Visibility – information about how and where to complain is well publicised to customers, staff and other interested parties
Accessibility – the process for making a complaint and investigating it is easy for customers to access and understand
Responsiveness – all complaints are acknowledged promptly, addressed efficiently, with the customer kept informed throughout the process
Fairness – all complaints are dealt with in an equitable, objective and unbiased manner
Review – the avenues for internal and external review and/or appeal about TasWater’s response to a complaint are made known to customers
Accountability – accountabilities for complaint management are clearly established, and complaints and responses monitored and results reported to management and the Board
Continuous Improvement – TasWater considers each complaint a potential source for continual improvement.

A copy of TasWater’s Complaints, Enquiries and Dispute Management Policy is provided here.