The areas that TDR can and can’t help with are set out in the scheme’s Terms of Reference and in codes that apply to the telecommunications sector.

The Terms of Reference sets out the rules for TDR members, enabling TDR to resolve complaints about products and services from our members.

TDR can also help with disputes under a Commission Code (meaning the 111 Contact Code, a Commission RSQ Code and Copper Withdrawal Code) and any industry RSQ code as required by s 247 of the Telecommunications Act 2001 (you can find copies for codes and their signatories on the TCF website). It is free for consumers to use our service under each of the codes.

TDR members are required to publish a customer care policy, complaints process and information on escalating disputes to the TDR scheme under their Customer Care Code obligations. 

The TDR Disputes Procedure outlines the process TDR and its scheme members must follow when considering a Customer Complaint.

TDR can consider

  • Complaints about any service or product from phone and internet providers who are a member of TDR.
  • Complaints from residential and small business customers (and organisations) with less than 20 full time employees.
  • Disagreements with any retail landline service provider (including those who are not members of TDR) about a vulnerable consumer’s ability to contact emergency services in a power cut, see the 111 Contact Code for more.
  • Disputes about copper services being removed in an area, see the Copper Withdrawal Code for more.

TDR can't consider

The following are Excluded Matters. TDR can’t consider complaints:

  • relating to equipment, applications or downloads that a Customer has not purchased from or been supplied by a Scheme Member;
  • relating to the composition or level of charges (price) a Scheme Member sets in respect of Telecommunications Services (provided that a Consumer shall not be prevented from basing a Complaint on the Scheme Member engaging in misleading conduct regarding its pricing);
  • relating to the absence of network coverage (provided that a Consumer shall not be prevented from basing a Complaint on the Scheme Member engaging in misleading conduct regarding its coverage);
  • which fall under the jurisdiction of another governmental agency or authority, or a commission better placed to deal with the matter (e.g., privacy matters, domain names, human rights matters, emergency service provider issues);
  • which are currently subject to legal action and/or currently being pursued in alternative dispute resolution or judicial forums (or similar) (for example, the disputes tribunal or a New Zealand court);
  • where the amount claimed by the Complainant in respect of that matter (or the aggregated amount claimed by the Complainant in respect of multiple matters, where the matters are the same or substantively similar) exceeds the maximum amount which may be sought in proceedings at the Disputes Tribunal;
  • which the Complainant has previously referred to the Scheme Agent, unless there is relevant new information which was not available at the time of the original referral;
  • relating to broadband performance, unless the complaint relates to a material failure of a broadband service to meet performance standards that have been represented to the Customer as the applicable standards for the broadband service, and which is covered by the complaints process set out in the TCF Broadband Marketing Code;
  • in respect of which the Complainant has:
    1. accepted or agreed to a resolution of that matter or a substantially similar matter with the relevant Scheme Member; or
    2. been offered a resolution by the Scheme Member and has not responded to the offer within 30 working days of the offer having been made in writing, provided that the Scheme Member advised the Complainant within that working days timeframe that a failure to respond to the offer would exclude them from the using the Scheme in respect of the same Complaint;
  • to the extent allowed by law, a claim or claims for compensation based on indirect loss (including loss of profits), punitive damages, pain or suffering, loss of reputation, inconvenience, humiliation, mental distress, and costs involved in compiling or pursuing a Complaint;
  • which are frivolous or vexatious or trivial, or the Scheme Agent is reasonably satisfied that the Complainant has refused to engage with the relevant Scheme Member or otherwise acted in bad faith in relation to attempting to resolve the matter; and
  • which are raised more than three (3) years following the date the Customer reasonably became aware of such matter.

Full details of types of disputes covered, and exclusions, can be found in the TDRL Terms of Reference, the 111 Contact Code and the Copper Withdrawal Code

If TDR is unable to help with your issue, other organisations listed under Helpful links may be helpful.