Complaints about electricity and gas providers 

How do I make a complaint about my power company?

If you have a complaint about an electricity or gas company, you should contact the company directly, preferably in writing.  Be sure to use the word 'complaint' so that it's clear that you are beginning a complaints process. Your local CAB can get help with your letter of complaint.

Alternatively, you can tell Utilities Disputes about your complaint and ask them to refer your complaint to the power company.

Generally, you should give the power company 20 working days in which to resolve your complaint. If it is still unresolved after this time you can escalate it to Utilities Disputes. You can complain to Utilities Disputes before this time period expires in some situations, for example if the power company has made it clear that they will not do anything about your complaint.

You must make  your complaint to Utilities Disputes within two months from the end of the 20-working day period you have given the power company to resolve your initial complaint.

Utilities Disputes is a free and independent service for resolving complaints about energy companies, and all distributors and retailers of electricity and gas must be members of the Utilities Disputes scheme. They can look into complaints about electricity, piped gas, LPG in bottles 15kg and over, as well as complaints relating to access to, or use of, land where there is electricity or gas equipment.

For more information about what Utilities Complaints can and can’t investigate is on their website.

Also on their website is information about the complaints process.

You can make a complaint to Utilities Disputes online or you can phone, fax, email or write to them.

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Can I claim for the cost of damage or loss resulting from a power outage?

You can claim compensation with the provider if you have experienced damage or loss due to: 

  • an outage, voltage fluctuation or other supply problem; or 
  • the actions of power company staff while they were inspecting or repairing their equipment on your land. 

To make a claim, tell the energy provider that you are making a complaint (see our answer to the previous question). Provide them with a description of the damage or loss that you’ve suffered, including proof (eg photos of spoiled food in your refrigerator, receipts for the cost of replacing spoiled food), the date and time the event occurred etc and so on.

More information about claiming compensation is on this information sheet on the Utilities Disputes website.