CR034 - Refining the definition of vulnerability
- CP Number CR034
- Raised Date 03/04/2016
- Implementation Date 27/06/2016
- Status Implemented
- Urgent Yes
- Last Updated 18/07/2019
- Consent Granted Yes
The current definition of vulnerable included within SMICoP aligns to the definition used in Energy UKs Safety Net. This definition lists specific characteristics (i.e. age, health, disability, or severe financial hardship) that identify a consumer as vulnerable. We are aware that the existing definition aligns to standard licence condition 41.11 (c) and 35.11 (c). However it, along with relevant licence conditions, do not reflect the dynamic nature of vulnerability, in terms of a vulnerable circumstance or situation a consumer may find themselves in.
The Customer Vulnerability Strategy (CVS) provides a different definition of vulnerable, which is less narrow in its description of vulnerable characteristics, but does not align to the above licence conditions. The (recently revised) definition included within the Priority Services Register (PSR) lists specific characteristics (aligning to the relevant licence conditions) and makes reference to vulnerable situation.
To ensure that all vulnerable consumers are protected during smart meter installation, the CR proposes a definition of vulnerable for SMICoP, drawing on the CVS and PSR definitions, to acknowledge the dynamic nature of a vulnerable circumstance or situation of a consumer, whilst aligning to the relevant licence conditions.