What to expect from your power company
We all need safe, reliable, well-priced electricity delivered into our home. Understand your rights as an electricity customer.
What are my rights?
You are guaranteed an acceptable quality of electricity under the Consumer Guarantees Act, which includes the:
- supply of electricity must be as safe and reliable as a reasonable consumer would expect it to be
- quality of electricity supplied must be such that it can be consistently used for things that a reasonable consumer would expect electricity for.
What are your power company's obligations?
We set out a number of voluntary minimum terms and conditions for power companies to adhere to when they set up your contract. These include offering you choice with a range of pricing plans, products and services. Power companies are also required to offer fair and reasonable contractual terms and conditions, timely and accurate billing and payments, and not impose unexpected or unfair costs.
We expect power companies to use our consumer care guidelines to provide a consistent and supportive standard of service. Most power companies have a consumer care policy which sets out their commitment to customers, how to keep you safe and help you manage your energy costs.
How your power company should work with you
Power companies following our consumer care guidelines should be supportive and treat you with understanding and respect, whatever your circumstance, ethnicity, age, gender, or culture. They should also:
- work with you to help you access and afford a constant supply of electricity to meet your household’s needs
- make information easy to access and provide advice so you can make informed decisions about the best options to meet the needs of your household
- work proactively to support customers facing payment difficulties
- provide you with advice to help you get connected if they cannot accept you as a customer.
What should my contract include?
When you sign up with a new power company you will sign a contract. This contract outlines your rights and the power company's responsibilities. Check your contract for key information about:
- connections, disconnections and contract termination
- the actual supply of electricity and related services, including metering
- contractual terms and conditions, such as being fair and reasonable
- how billing and payments will be handled
- how the power company will request access to your property
- how complaints will be handled.
What if I am medically dependent on power?
If you, or someone in your household is or could be medically dependent, you must let your power company know immediately and apply for 'medically dependent consumer' status.