Energy bills compensation could increase to £40 – how you can claim money back | Personal Finance | Finance

Watchdogs are investigating boosting compensation offered to householders let down by their energy company by 25 percent.

The energy regulator Ofgem has signalled plans to increase the payment from £30 to £40.

The payment should be triggered when an energy retailer fails to meet the requirements of the Guaranteed Standards of Performance (GSoP).

These include minimum standards for making and keeping appointments, investigating and fixing/replacing credit or prepayment meter faults, and switching supplier within five working days.

The current Guaranteed Standards of Performance were introduced in 2015, with the £30 payment level set at the same time. Further standards in relation to switching suppliers in 2019 and 2020.

Ofgem said: “A £10 increase will bring the payment in line with inflation since it was last set, and ensure customers continue to be fairly compensated when their supplier fails to meet the minimum standards set out in regulations.”

Beth Martin, Director of Consumer Protection and Competition at Ofgem, said: “We’re working hard to drive up standards in the energy sector, and have introduced a series of reforms to make sure energy companies are doing everything they can to support their customers.

“The guaranteed standards of performance were brought in to make sure consumers get the service they deserve from their energy supplier, but we know things do go wrong from time to time. When that happens, consumers should be compensated fairly.

“With the cost of living increasing across the board, it’s right that we look again at the payment level to make sure this reflects inflation.”

This consultation follows a series of reforms from Ofgem to improve customer service standards in the energy sector, including the introduction of faster compensation payments when a supplier fails to complete a customer switch, which came into force last month.

The regulator also introduced a number of new rules last December, including the requirement to prioritise enquiries from vulnerable customers, and proactively offer support to those who may be struggling to make payments.

Last year the regulator ordered three suppliers, E.On Next, Good Energy and Octopus Energy, to pay a total of £8million in compensation and redress after failing to meet the GSoP related to billing, and timely compensation payments.

The full list of minimum standards suppliers must meet, or pay compensation if they do not, under the GSoP include:

• Making and keeping appointments for home/microbusiness visits;

• Investigating and fixing/replacing faulty credit meters;

• Investigating and fixing/replacing faulty prepayment meters;

• Reconnection following a disconnection due to debt;

• Completing a customer’s switch to a new supplier within 5 working days;

• Avoiding, investigating and reversing any erroneous transfer of a customer to a new supplier;

• Provision of a final bill within sis weeks of a customer switching supplier;

• Refund of a customer’s outstanding credit balance within 10 working days of providing a final bill to switched customer.

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