Negotiations, Appeals & Disputes »

Negotiations, Appeals & Disputes

The SEC sets out a number of mechanisms that SEC Parties, the Data Communications Company (DCC) and other authorised entities can use to contest certain decisions by SEC-defined bodies (e.g. other SEC Parties, the SEC Panel and its Sub-Committees). These mechanisms are further explained in the Guidance Notes and below.

What is a Negotiation?

The objective of the Negotiation stage is for all Parties to use all reasonable attempts to resolve any issues through amicable negotiation without raising a formal Dispute. You are encouraged to raise any matters with SECAS as soon as possible to see if a resolution can be found through negotiation without escalating the matter to the SEC Panel or the Authority (Ofgem) for final decision.

To start the process by informing SECAS of a Negotiation, please complete the Negotiation Form and email to the SECAS Helpdesk.

What is an Appeal?

An Appeal is a decision which is challenged by a SEC Party, the DCC or other authorised entities, which Parties have been unable to resolve through amicable negotiation. The Appeals Route Table explains the SEC Sections and specific SEC clauses that may be appealed, who may appeal them and who they may raise the appeal to, including any possible further escalation routes.

What is a Dispute?

If you are unable to resolve the issue(s) through amicable negotiation, you may raise a Dispute. To do this, you must provide SECAS with all supporting evidence, including:

  • The impacts on SEC Parties;
  • Date(s) / timings of the issue(s) in question;
  • Any advice (for example, legal) that you have sought; and
  • Evidence of previous attempts to resolve the matter through amicable negotiation.

SECAS will notify the SEC Panel of the Dispute who will determine if it requires additional evidence or discussions with Sub-Committees / independent experts before making a decision. You will be included in any meetings where the Dispute is discussed.

What is a Referral?

The Referral process is an escalation route for a decision be taken to a higher body (e.g. the SEC Panel or Ofgem).

What is an Event of Default?

An Event of Default occurs when a Party is in breach of the Smart Energy Code (SEC). Section M8 of the SEC sets out the circumstances in which a Party is considered in an Event of Default, the mandatory actions that the Panel must undertake once aware of an Event of Default, and the actions that they may enact against a Defaulting Party.

If you have any questions, please contact the SECAS Helpdesk.