Consultation on our proposal to issue a revised version of the Code for Adoption Agreements

Consultation on our proposal to issue a revised version of the Code for Adoption Agreements

Published date: August 23, 2022
Closing date: Wednesday September 21st, 2022 12:00pm

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About Consultation

This was a consultation on our proposal to issue a revised version of the Code for Adoption Agreements (the Code). Adoption agreements are the agreements between a water company and another party to adopt new water or wastewater infrastructure after it has been constructed, usually as part of a new development. 

 The Code applies to water and sewerage companies that operate wholly or mainly in England. It requires companies to develop model adoption agreements as well as sector guidance setting out standard procedures for entering into, varying and terminating those adoption agreements. When a proposal is made to change the sector guidance or the model adoption agreements, an independent panel reviews the requests and makes a recommendation to us on whether the proposed change should be implemented. We are proposing to increase the amount of time that the panel has in which to make this recommendation from three months to four months to better reflect the practicalities of making this recommendation and the administrative burdens that are placed on the panel.   

We invite the water and sewerage companies, and other relevant stakeholders, to comment on our proposed revised version of the Code by 21 September 2022.

Please email your responses to codeforadoption@ofwat.gov.uk. 

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All five of the respondents to the consultation agreed with the proposed changes to the Codes for Adoption Agreement (the Code). We will therefore go ahead with the proposed changes on which we consulted, which will be implemented immediately.

The revised Codes for Adoption Agreements document can be found below.

Fair Water Connections (FWC) also asked for an additional change to the Code. This concerns situations where a party has proposed a change to the Sector Documents[2] and the reviewing panel decides to recommend an alternative change to the Sector Documents than that which was originally proposed. The change to the Code requested by FWC would require the reviewing panel to consult with the original proposer on the alternative change and extend the deadline by which recommendations on change proposals must be completed. While we agree with the aim of this suggestion, we will address this by asking the reviewing panels making a change to their review processes rather than making a change to the Code itself.

Supporting documents