SSE fined £1.25m for doorstop mis-selling
Energy company SSE has been slapped with a fine of £1.25m for using misleading doorstep sales tactics to sell energy packages.
The company was found guilty in May 2011 on two counts out of seven in a case brought forwards by Surrey County Council Trading Standards relating to the use of doorstep sales in 2009.
Receiving the fine today (May 4) at Guildford Crown Court, SSE said that it would not challenge the level of the fine, but would pay it in full. SSE lost its appeal to the Court of Appeal over the case in March this year.
Following notification from the Trading Standards, SSE stopped its door-to-door sales tactics and created a £5m compensation pot to reimburse customers who were mis-sold.
SSE director of sales, marketing and energy service, Stephen Forbes said: “We accept that a company of SSE’s standing and with SSE’s values should not have found itself in this position and we are very sorry that it did.
“Energy sales in SSE have been transformed in the three years since this case started and customers should have absolute trust in SSE and complete confidence in the products and service we offer.”
Responding to the announcement, Consumer Focus director of energy Audrey Gallacher, said that he hoped the fine would act as a warning to other energy suppliers.
He said: “‘Firms must not be left to profit at the expense of customers who have been misled. A fine of £1.25m set by the court sends a very strong message to the energy industry that it must play fair by its customers and get it right on sales.”
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