OFT Decision Forces TPO Logo Change

Published on Tuesday, 29 January 2013. Posted in Press Releases

The OFT will be ceasing it Consumer Codes Approval Scheme from 1 April. As a result the OFT has withdrawn the right to use it's 'OFT Approved Code' logo from 31 March 2013.

The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) is ceasing its Consumer Codes Approval Scheme from April 1.

As a consequence, it has withdrawn the right to use its OFT Approved Code Logo from March 31, 2013, meaning all Member Sales Agents of The Property Ombudsman scheme will no longer be authorised to display the OFT logo in any form including in displays on marketing material, website advertising, window displays, or in any other promotional material.

'The Trading Standards Institute (TSI) is the new body appointed to take over from OFT to run a similar scheme,' says Gerry Fitzjohn, chief operating officer of TPO.

'I have been considering whether or not to participate in the new scheme on the basis of cost, the recognition of the new 'brand' and whether it has meaning for consumers and member agents.

'As yet I have not had sufficient information to make a decision and TSI has not yet confirmed what their logo for the Scheme will be.

'TSI initially advised me that sales agents would have had a period of grace of up to one year within which to remove references to OFT, but now says that the OFT logos must be removed from April 1, 2013, and that a handover period is not possible.

'I fully appreciate it will be a difficult and potentially costly task to remove the logo and references to the OFT at short notice. I am urgently seeking to negotiate a satisfactory transition but until I achieve a successful outcome sales agents have no alternative but to remove OFT Logos and references to the OFT across their businesses with effect from April 1.

'In preparation for the changeover, we will supply all member agents with a 'The Property Ombudsman' logo (without the attached Approved Code logo belonging to the OFT) and will be making stocks of this generic logo available at no cost to replace existing window stickers.'