• The complaint process

    The Office of the Hydro One Ombudsman is an office of last resort and will intervene if an issue within our jurisdiction cannot be resolved by the company.

1Receive Complaint
2Assess Complaint
After receiving your complaint, we will assess whether the subject matter of your complaint is something our Office is able to help with, and whether it is the right time for us to get involved.
Is the complaint premature or outside our mandate?
3AReview Complaint
When reviewing a complaint, we want to make sure we have all the information we need, including the consent of the account holder, and consider whether it can be resolved without a formal investigation using a variety of dispute resolution techniques.
If a complaint is premature or falls outside our jurisdiction, we provide support and advice to the complainant on how to move forward with their complaint by referring them to the right department within Hydro One or to the right external organization.
4Resolve Complaint
Wherever possible, we look for opportunities to use early resolution techniques to allow Hydro One and the complainant to reach satisfactory conclusions. In most instances, we are able to provide timely resolution of complaints without the need for formal investigations.
5Further Investigation
Where a complaint is complex, involves multiple issues, or the concerns presented may be system wide, the Ombudsman may start a formal investigation. Investigations conclude with a report being issued to both the complainant and the company, and where appropriate, recommendations are made to Hydro One to rectify the specific complaint or avoid it from happening again.
6No Action Needed
In some cases, the complainant is not looking for any specific resolution, but simply wants the company to be aware of their concerns. These information submissions are recorded, shared with the company where appropriate, and reported to the Board of Directors in aggregate as part of our quarterly reporting obligations.

Type of Complaints

When our Office receives a complaint, we assess what the complainant has done to resolve the issue and categorize the complaint based on next steps that need to be taken. Complaints to our Office are categorized as follows:

  • Information and Referral

    Occasionally, our Office receives information submissions from the public that are not attached to a specific complaint. We track these comments and, where appropriate, refer to them when addressing systemic issues.

  • Support and Advice

    If a complaint is premature or falls outside our mandate, we do our best to give the complainant the support and advice they need to move forward with their complaint and refer them to the appropriate department within Hydro One or to the right external organization.

  • Early Resolution

    Where possible, our Office tries to resolve complaints through our “early resolution” stream by engaging in informal discussions and mediation with the complainant and the company. This allows us to resolve issues quickly and effectively.

  • Investigation

    Where an issue is more complex or involves potential systemic issues, we conduct a formal investigation. At the conclusion of an early resolution matter or an investigation, our Office may provide the company with advice and recommendations on how to resolve any individual or systemic issues where unfairness is identified.

  • Systemic Investigations

    On rare occasions, our Office may undertake a systemic investigation when:

    • the problem may be system-wide
    • the problem could affect multiple groups or types of customers
    • there are repeated or multiple complaints about the same issue
    • the complaint has a public interest that could affect many customers
    • there appears to be a problem with a particular part of the system, or
    • the case has compelling circumstance.
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