Step 1 Contact Your Utility
When you have a complaint about your water service, contact Aqwest and give them an opportunity to try and resolve your concerns. Water Utilities are required to deal with complaints from their customers within 15 days.
If you approach the Ombudsman with a complaint without first giving your Water Utility a chance to respond, the Ombudsman will ask you to take your complaint back to the Utility.
Step 2 Lodge Your Complaint
If you have not been able to resolve your concerns through the Water Utility's complaints procedure, you can ask the Energy and Water Ombudsman of Water to investigate the complaint on your behalf.
We will need to know why you are not satisfied with the Utility's actions, and what you would like to see happen to resolve the matter.
You can lodge your complaint with the Energy and Water Ombudsman in writing, by telephone or by email. (If possible, send copies of any papers that will help us to understand the issues involved).
If you would prefer to make your complaint in person, staff at the Energy and Water Ombudsman Office are available to meet with you to discuss your case.
The office's contact details are:
Energy and Water Ombudsman
Level 2, Albert Facey House
469 Wellington Street
Perth WA 6000
PO Box Z5386
St Georges Terrace,
Perth WA 631
Tel: (08) 9220 7588
Fax: (08) 9220 7599
While it is not essential for you to lodge your complaint in writing, doing so will assist the staff of the Ombudsman to document and follow up your concerns and explain your complaint to others.
Step 3 Investigation
When your complaint is received by the Ombudsman, they will seek further information on the nature of the problem, what has caused it, why you are unhappy with the response of your Utility, and what action you would like taken.
In many cases staff from the Ombudsman will contact the Water Utility for further information. This usually involves sending them a copy of your complaint and asking them to comment on your case. The Ombudsman may also need to ask further questions, review the Utility's files or hold meetings.
When investigating your complaint the Ombudsman will try to mediate between you and the Water Utility. In dealing with you they will provide prompt, courteous, and where possible helpful responses to your enquiries. Staff will identify themselves to callers and follow up responses in a timely manner.
Step 4 Outcome
If the Water Utility has made a mistake the Ombudsman can recommend it reconsider or change its decision, apologise, or compensate you. A common outcome is for the provision of further information and explain why a particular decision was taken.
Step 5 Other Avenues
If you are dissatisfied with how the Energy and Water Ombudsman has dealt with your case, you can take your complaint to the Minister for Water or refer your complaint to independent arbitration.