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Message 1 of 6

How many BT cooks does it take to spoil a working line transfer?

First of all, this is not a rant but a chronicle of organisational chaos, misinformation and total incompetance!


As of 30th October 2013 I contacted BT three weeks ago to request a working line transfer (BT's terminology). I asked if it was easy to do and BT said "yes, no problem, it's really straight forward".


I was advised to get in touch with BT a minimum of 7 days before the transfer was required. I got in touch 8 days before we needed the transfer (18th October 2013). I had to request a "STOP" for the services on the line we want to take over. Fine.


BT said they had to carry out an "offline transfer" because I had another line at my address and I said okay - would they get in touch to confirm this? Oh yes they said, you will get an email to confirm this but call us if you don't. I didn't get an email so I called. It's all fine and they said "why were you told to request a "STOP"?" I replied that's what I was told to do. They said, "no, you don't need a "STOP"". Okay I said, will it all be fine? "Oh yes, no problem, don't worry".


On or around 21st October 2013, my father-in-law was contacted by BT (at the house we have moved to) and asked if it was okay for the account to be transferred to me. "Yes" he said and BT confirmed with me in another call that this had been done. I thought all was fine.


The top and bottom is that the original advice to request the "STOP" was correct. The advice I was given NOT to ask for a "STOP" was incorrect and has subsequently caused havoc! "You don't need to aks for a "STOP" and I can't understand why you've been advised to do this" BT said.


I was reassured that our working line transfer was on track for 29th October and would be completed by midnight at the latest - I was asked to phone and check if this was the case on our moving day. It wasn't done!


I called on 30th October to report that it hadn't been done and was told not to worry, it would be done by 20:00 GMT. It wasn't done!


I thought I would check on the progress once more and was told that it wouldn't be done after all. The order had not been processed and that my father-in-law had requested a transfer date of 1st November 2013. I checked with my father-in-law and he confirmed that he never gave BT this date. So where did BT get this date from? Did they just make it up to cover their tracks and incompetence? I suspect this was the case. My father-in-law even spoke to them whilst I was on a support call and confirmed this fact. The customer services representative was totally stumped on this information. Make waht you will of this.


I then received a text message to say that the working line transfer could not be processed until 4th November 2013. What? Why? How?


I was then told that it would be completed on 1st November for the telephone line and 6th November 2013 for broadband. What? Why? How?


I phoned at 20:07 GMT this evening and received an automated message to say that our number would be "changed" on 1st November 2013 and the broadband would be reconnected on 6th November. What? Why? How? Are BT disconnecting our telephone line? Are they changing the number? Are they disconnecting the broadband?


I then phoned BT at about 20:15 GMT and got through to the broadband team with difficulty after being cut off twice. I was reassured that it was being dealt with and that the line and broadband was not being disconnected. The supervisor said he would leave a note for another supervisor to follow it up "in the morning". What are the chances of that?


I won't go into why this line "had" to be transfered by 29th October but let's just say that it was a no fail scenario.


The top and bottom of this is that I will be seeking major compensation from BT and looking for an explanation from a senior member of their team. Of course I expect our telephone line and broadband to be disconnected before I can make this call or send an email. We will be moving to a different supplier after being loyal customers for nearly 30 years. 


Come on BT, serve your customers and remove the incompetence. After speaking to many different people about this they confirmed that BT would get it all wrong - they have been proven correct.

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Distinguished Sage
Message 2 of 6

Re: How many BT cooks does it take to spoil a working line transfer?

The forum mods will reply to you here and give you their link when they read your post
Please do not send them a PM as this is not the correct contact method and this may delay any reply from them as they may not be back on shift for some timemod contact.JPG

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Distinguished Guru
Message 3 of 6

Re: How many BT cooks does it take to spoil a working line transfer?

Your odds of getting "major compensation" from BT are somewhere between fat chance and slim chance.  The minimum you're likely to get is a refund on your line rental fees for any time the service wasn't working.  If you're lucky they will give you some goodwill gesture, say a month's bills refunded.

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Message 4 of 6

Re: How many BT cooks does it take to spoil a working line transfer?

Hi Air-Ship


Send an email using the contact the mods link in my profile and I can have this investigated for you.


You will be able to view the link in the section 'About Me'.





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Message 5 of 6

Re: How many BT cooks does it take to spoil a working line transfer?

Hi Stuart,


Many thanks for responding to my post.


It turns out that BT have made such a major error that we may now have no broadband for 6 days! The issue has been expedited to try and get it sorted.


They have admitted that it is their error and that it is a grave on at that.


I will of course send them an invoice for every day I cannot use broadband for my temporary business set up at the new address. This will be accompanied with a small claims court action. BT cannot be allowed to do this to their customers.


Suffice to say that we will be moving away from BT in the near future to a provider that can get a job done properly.


When I get a moment I'll PM you with the VOL number - I eventually received this yesterday, 30th October 2013.


All the best,




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Distinguished Guru
Message 6 of 6

Re: How many BT cooks does it take to spoil a working line transfer?



That means that either:

a) You're on the wrong forum, or

b) You have been breaking the terms and conditions for a residential phone line.


If it's the latter, then BT has every right to cut you off permanently with no compensation.  They are unlikely to do that, but you're not going to have a lot of luck claiming compensation for something you shouldn't have been doing in the first place.