We have launched a project to examine the regulatory framework governing energy back-billing.
Our minded-to position is to introduce new licence obligations for suppliers to strengthen consumer protections in this area.
Energy back-bills: 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. Since then, the energy supply market has expanded from 11 suppliers to over 50 currently and we are concerned that the voluntary principle is not being applied consistently, and that not all suppliers have appropriate back-billing protections in place.
Back-billing project scope
Our project will consider:
- the types of consumers any new licence obligations will need to protect (i.e. domestic alone or both domestic and non-domestic)
- whether it is appropriate for different limits to apply for consumers with differing metering technology
- the level of detail any new licence obligations need to contain (should we decide they are necessary).
On 3 April 2017 we published an open letter to outline our concerns and give notice of our minded-to decision. The letter includes information on the current back-billing policies of energy suppliers for smart meters.
We are currently asking for initial views on our minded-to decision by 28 April. Details of how to have your say are outlined in the open letter.
We will ask for further comment on detailed proposals in the summer of 2017, with a view to introducing new rules in the winter.
You can view all publications and outputs relating to the Back-billing Project in the publications and updates list below.