Vulnerable people around the UK are being supported by the government and the energy industry, with new measures now agreed upon to protect their domestic energy supply during the pandemic.
Any energy customer that finds themselves in financial distress at this time will be supported by their supplier, whether that’s through the reassessment, reduction or pausing of debt repayments and bill payments, while disconnection of credit meters has been stopped completely.
Those with pre-payment meters who find they’re unable to add credit can now discuss their options with their supplier to keep them supplied, a move that is expected to benefit more than four million customers.
Options could include being sent a pre-loaded top-up card to ensure uninterrupted supply, having a discretionary fund added to credit or nominating a third party for credit top-ups.
Those existing customers that are most in need will be prioritised, while steps are also being taken to identify customers whose circumstances could possibly have changed because of COVID-19.
Alok Sharma, secretary of state for business and energy, said: “While friends and family will play a role in helping people impacted by the Coronavirus, we recognise there will be many customers who will need additional support and reassurance, particularly those who are financially impacted or in vulnerable circumstances.
“The government has committed to do whatever it takes to get our nation through the impacts of this coronavirus pandemic. Today those most in need can rest assured that a secure supply of energy will continue to flow into their homes during this difficult time.”
Back in February, Ofgem also announced that the level of the prepayment meter cap would fall by £17, dropping from £1,217 to £1,200 a year for the summer period (April to September)… further good news for those feeling the pinch right now.
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