Energy backbilling project

In March 2018, we announced our decision to protect consumers from lengthy backbills, banning suppliers from issuing customers with backbills for energy used more than 12 months prior to the date of the bill. The decision followed our statutory consultation and open letter we published in 2017.

Energy backbills: Background

In 2007, domestic energy suppliers active at that time) signed up to a voluntary commitment to not back-bill for energy used more than 12 months previously, if the supplier was at fault for not sending a bill or billing incorrectly.  Many suppliers had signed up to, or followed, a voluntary agreement not to backbill customers past 12 months However, the new rules on backbilling now covers all suppliers.

Backbilling project summary

  • Standard Condition 21BA places restrictions on backbilling. The condition prevents suppliers from backbilling domestic and microbusiness consumers for energy consumed more than 12 months prior to the date of the bill, subject to certain exceptions including where the consumer has been obstructive or manifestly unreasonable.
  • This protects consumers from the shock of backbills and strongly incentivise suppliers to engage with consumers to get meter readings.
  • The licence condition applies to all meter types and payment methods.

You can view all publications and outputs relating to the Backbilling project in the publications and updates list below

Publications and updates

  • Published: 5th Mar 2018
  • Decisions
  • 3 Associated documents
Ofgem has decided to modify electricity and gas supply licence to introduce rules on backbilling.

  • Published: 16th Nov 2017
  • Closed: 18th Dec 2017
  • Consultations and responses
  • 32 Associated documents
This statutory consultation invites views on our proposal to introduce a licence obligation around backbilling.

  • Published: 3rd Apr 2017
  • Open letters and correspondence
  • 11 Associated documents
See our open letter notifying of our intention to launch a project to protect consumers from back billing