Section 18: Discontinuation of water services
81.Section 18 enables water services providers to request (under subsection (1)) that Scottish Water discontinue the supply of water to a premises provided by Scottish Water under an agreement with the provider as established by section 16(2) of the Act. This provision will allow a water services provider, subject to compliance with the provisions of the disconnection code provided for under section 19, to request the disconnection of a customer, for example, when the customer has not complied with their contract to the provider by not paying their charges.
82.Subsection (2) requires a provider to serve a notice on: the occupier of the premises, Scottish Water, and the Commission, at least 14 days before requesting disconnection intimating its intention to seek disconnection. Subsection (3) gives Ministers the power to specify by order the form the notice will take and its content, and under section 34 an order under this subsection is subject to negative procedure in the Parliament.
83.Subsection (4) gives the occupier of the premises concerned the right to make representations to the provider about the notice within 10 days of it being served, which the provider must have regard to.
84.Subsection (5) requires Scottish Water to discontinue a supply of water as requested if the conditions set out in subsection (6) are satisfied. Accordingly, the disconnections code provided under section 19 of the Act must have been complied with, and the disconnection requested must not adversely affect any supply of water to the premises for domestic purposes, or the supply of water, to any other premises for any purpose. Subsection (7) provides that a supply of water for domestic purposes is defined in accordance with section 7 of the Water (Scotland) Act 1980 (which includes a supply for drinking, washing, cooking, central heating and sanitary purposes).
85.Subsection (8) provides that the water services provider who requested the disconnection should pay any reasonable costs incurred by Scottish Water in carrying out the disconnection. Subsection (9) provides that in the case of any dispute as to reasonable costs in this regard the Commission will determine this and its decision is final.