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TrustMark - Contractual issue
Things can go wrong when you are having work undertaken and seeking a resolution can be a stressful journey.
TrustMark and its Scheme Operators have worked together to provide you with a simple set of actions to follow that should help resolve your challenge.
If you believe that a TrustMark-registered firm has not met the obligations set out in your contract, you need to raise the issue immediately. If it is affecting your ability to stay within the home, we recommend you call the firm that carried out the works via the Resolver app on your phone. You can expect them to take action to put the issue right immediately, for free.You should know
TrustMark complies with Core Criteria which, sets out the Government-endorsed standards that registered firms make commitment to work to. It sets out the following criteria:
- A firm's technical skills have been independently checked through regular on-site inspections, as well as checks on their trading record and financial status;
- Firms have signed up to a code of practice that includes insurance, good health and safety practices and customer care;
- The Scheme Operator has checked and will continue to monitor the firm's quality of work, trading practices and customer satisfaction;
- Firms are able to offer an Insurance Backed Warranty; Deposit Protection Insurance is available for consumers in the event a firm should cease trading;
- Firms will be able to tell you about any building regulations you must comply with and may also be able to provide appropriate certificates;
- If you have a problem or disagreement with the firm, there will be a clear and user-friendly complaints procedure to help resolve the issue;
- The scheme is fully supported by Government, the building industry and consumer protection groups.
A copy can be found here.
Resolver will allow you to take your dispute to the next stage and you can use it to send the dispute to a responsible Scheme Operator.
First of all
Be prepared and have all your facts and evidence to hand when starting to talk to the firm (e.g. any agreed contracts and changes you may have, any photos, written evidence of the cost of the works, agreed payment schedule and process).
What to do next?
If the issue is not sorted out at that stage, you should contact the Scheme Operator. TrustMark works with 33 Scheme Operators who have a specialist technical knowledge to investigate your dispute. They will have set procedures in place to investigate and handle your dispute, which covers the level of workmanship, materials and customer service. These procedures must comply with TrustMark standards (see here) - they must be fast, responsive, accessible and user-friendly.
Why can I not send my dispute to TrustMark directly?
TrustMark relies on its Scheme Operators to settle problems between registered firms and their customers and will not become involved in the substance of any dispute.
If you feel, however, that your dispute has not been handled properly according to the Scheme Operator's stated procedures, you can refer the issue to TrustMark. They will only investigate the way the complaint has been handled, not the original points in dispute.
Still not satisfied?
TrustMark also offers more protection to consumers with Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), another significant consumer law change. You will be able to use that service when you have used all other above options as an easier and cheaper alternative to court.
Important useful information
On 13 June 2014 the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013 SI 2013 No. 3134 came into force.
These regulations now apply to contracts concluded on or after 13 June 2014. On this date, the Distance Selling Regulations 2000 and the Off Premises (Doorstep) Regulations 2008 were revoked.
It contains a lot of useful information – find a copy here
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