Authority direction to supply is the process of reallocating a supply point in the market to a different retailer, upon instruction from Ofwat. This is generally in response to one of two scenarios:

  • A self-supply retailer will not be able to continue to supply a currently-serviced site under the terms of their licence (e.g. if they sell a premise) and as a result must cease to be a retailer for the customer; or
  • A customer is unhappy with the service provided by their current retailer and requests a new retailer from Ofwat directly.

It should be noted that this process is different to gap site allocation, which is described under ‘CSD0005: direction to supply allocation process’ in the codes. The latter process refers to a premise which is in receipt of water and/or sewage services but to which there are no, or insufficient, supply points registered.

Opting in for authority direction to supply

Retailers have the ability to receiving sites via authority direction to supply by opting into ‘Interim Supply agreements’ in CMOS, which can be done for individual areas and/or by service categories, and submitting a Kissflow application to notify Ofwat and MOSL. Note that by opting in, you will also be opting into interim supply allocations (where a retailer is no longer able to continue to serve any customers in an area or the entire market).

Allocating supply points

Following instruction from Ofwat, supply points will be allocated to a randomly ordered list of all retailers who have opted in to the ‘Interim Supply agreement’ for a service area and category in CMOS. Wherever possible, pairs of supply points will be allocated to the same retailer.

 If you are opted into the process and receive a supply point, you will be required to provide services to the premise and should register it within your systems and processes. Due to the method of transfer, a transfer read is not required (and will be rejected by CMOS if submitted) although a cyclic read can be submitted to assist with clarity on invoicing.


The Contract Managers of any retailers who are to be allocated SPIDs under an authority direction to supply will be notified as part of the allocation process. Included in this notification will be a list of transferred supply points, which will be stored on the trading party’s SharePoint site. This is in addition to the normally expected notifications (T108.M and others) issued via CMOS similar to a regular transfer. 

 Where a self-supply retailer identifies that they will be unable to supply a site, they are obligated to try to resolve the issue themselves prior to using the authority direction to supply process. In these cases, you may be contacted by the retailer directly regarding transferring identified sites.

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