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Customer fights for compensation after paying neighbours power bill for years

Monday, July 8, 2019
Customers fights for compensation from power company

How closely do you monitor your power bill?  A recent report revealed that a man whose power bills kept increasing over a period of six years was actually paying his neighbour’s bill by mistake.

The customer had raised concerns with his power company about the size of his power bill a number of times between 2012 and 2017.

The customer’s power bills kept going up, despite using the same about of power. His neighbour, who had more people living in the house, had lower bills.

The power company did not believe there was an issue, but in 2017, an electrician checking the meter noticed that it was cross-wired with the neighbour’s property.

How to settle a dispute with your power company

You can learn more about steps to take in a specific situation at the Electricity Authority. There are basic steps to follow if you have a dispute with your power company:

  • Make a complaint directly with your power company to give them an opportunity to take appropriate action
  • In most cases, your power company will work with you to come to a resolution
  • If your complaint is not resolved you can contact Utilities Disputes – a free and independent dispute resolution service

In this situation the retailer confirmed that the man had been paying the incorrect power bill, but both parties could come to an agreement about how much should be paid in compensation.

The power company offered a refund of $2106, topped up to $2500 and then $3000 to acknowledge the poor service he received. But he the customer said he would only accept a payment of $3000.

The parties took their case to the Utilities Disputes Commissioner, where they customer’s complaint was upheld.

Commissioner Nanette Moreau said he should receive $2106 for overpaid bills and $1200 for poor customer service.

She said the power company should have escalated his complaint in 2014 when he raised his concern a second time.

Stay informed about Power Plans and your rights

At Power Compare we believe everyone should be about to make informed choices about power plans and power providers. If you’re not feeling fully satisfied with your power provider, it may be time to compare the options and make an informed choice.

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