Five questions on: Money owed by energy firms

Around three million people are owed money by energy firms

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The Independent Online

Who do they owe money to?

You and me. Anyone who’s switched supplier or moved home could be owed money for outstanding credits we may have left behind.

Why haven’t they repaid us? 

These are the energy companies we’re talking about. They’re not known for their efficiency. In fact they tend to be among the most complained-about businesses in the country.

So how many people are owed money? 

Around 3 million. But the regulator has forced the big six energy suppliers – British Gas, EDF, E.ON, npower, Scottish Power and SSE – to launch an awareness campaign so that people still owed money can chase it up. “My Energy Credit” allows gas and electricity customers to claim credit repayments through a new helpline launched this week: 0370 737 7770.

There’s also a freepost address to which people can write to claim cash owed to them: Freepost RTHL-ZYBU-KBCC, My Energy Credit, 47 Aylesbury Road, Thame OX9 3PG. There are full details at myenergycredit.com.

How much money am I likely to be owed? 

It’s not that much: the average credit balance is around £50. But, you never know, you may be owed more, so it’s worth finding out. In September, it was estimated that the total amount that suppliers have failed to repay to customers is more than £150m, so some people could be owed hundreds.

Will this be the end of it? 

The energy regulator welcomed the move but demanded more action from the big six. Philip Cullum, consumer partner at Ofgem, said: “This issue is part of a wider challenge of delivering good customer service that the industry must crack if it is to rebuild customer trust and confidence. Suppliers must now do everything within their powers to return the money and prevent a similar situation from happening again.”

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