The Energy Ombudsman of Tasmania provides a free, fair and independent dispute-resolution service for electricity and natural gas consumers who have been unable to resolve a complaint with their energy retailer or distributor.
The Energy Ombudsman seeks to achieve a fair and reasonable outcomes for complainants based on current law, individual circumstances and good industry practice. We can investigate a wide range of complaints, including:
- Disputed accounts and high bills
- Debts and arrears
- Disconnection or restriction of supply
- Actions of a retailer or distributor that affect your property
- Reliability and quality of supply (including claims for compensation)
- Connection or transfer issues
- Vegetation and easement issues
We can help you by:
- Providing general information about your rights and responsibilities as an energy consumer
- Arranging for a senior person in the company to contact you directly about your complaint
- Investigating the circumstances that led to your complaint
- Trying to negotiate an agreement between you and the energy entity
Most complaints are resolved to the satisfaction of both parties. Where appropriate, the Energy Ombudsman can make a binding decision on the issue.
Please note that the Energy Ombudsman must remain impartial and so cannot act as your advocate.
Legislation, Regulations and Guidelines
The Energy Ombudsman considers a wide range of legislation, regulations and guidelines when considering a complaint.
Before the disaggregation of the Hydro Electric Commission in 1998, the Office of the Economic Regulator was responsible for protecting the interests of electricity consumers.
People could only make electricity-related complaints through civil courts, the State Ombudsman or the Office of Consumer Affairs.
Research showed that an industry-specific scheme was needed and the Office of the Electricity Ombudsman was established in October 1998, after the Electricity Ombudsman Act received Royal Assent on 19 June 1998.
With the introduction of natural gas to the Tasmanian energy market, amendments were made to the Act and the Electricity Ombudsman became the Energy Ombudsman.
Since 1 July 2005, the Energy Ombudsman has had the power to receive, investigate and resolve complaints between electricity and gas consumers and their providers, under the Energy Ombudsman Act 1998.
About the Ombudsman
Mr Richard Connock was appointed as Tasmania's Ombudsman and Health Complaints Commissioner in July 2014.
Mr Connock was Acting Ombudsman since January 2014, following the resignation of Mr Leon Atkinson-MacEwen. He was appointed Director of the Office of the Ombudsman in April 2011, and prior to that was the Principal Officer, Ombudsman.
He has extensive experience as a barrister and solicitor, principally in Victoria. Following his move to Tasmania in 2000, however, Mr Connock focused more on consultancy than legal work and before joining the Office of the Ombudsman, provided investigation, conciliation and mediation services for a number of government agencies and private organisations.
As with previous Ombudsmen, Mr Connock will also serve as the Energy Ombudsman.
Any job vacancies will be advertised on the Tasmanian Government Jobs Website.
We currently have no vacancies.