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Legal implications with my energy company billing me for incorrect meter reading?

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  • Legal implications with my energy company billing me for incorrect meter reading?

    Iíll try to keep this as short as possible, any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    I have lived at my current rented flat with my girlfriend for a couple of years, my first time living away from my parents. I have recently come to learn (due to my own naivety which I can only apologise for) that it is best practice to update your energy company with monthly meter readings to avoid large back bills, which I am now fully aware of. Up until now, I have only given readings if and when Iíve been asked for them, and that is the extent to which I admit I am at fault.
    Now onto where I believe my energy company is culpable.

    In January 2022, I received an email asking for a reading (just for electricity as we donít have gas). I do not have physical access to my meter, so I have to text message the caretaker for the building who messaged me the readings. (I have screenshot and messages from him: ď
    Rate 4 (night rate) - 35575
    Rate 1 (day rate) - 48210
    Total - 83785

    I replied to the energy companyís email with these figures, and the rep assured me that these figures would be updated as such, I would received correct billing.

    Fast forward to 28th August, I receive another request for a meter update, but as I now have the companyís app, inputted the latest figures myself after receiving them from the caretaker.
    I am shocked and distraught to see an estimated debit of £3355.02.

    I immediately check the readings figures on my account, only to find that the readings listed on January have not been inputted as I sent them, but as much lower figures of: Day rate: 40511 and Night rate: 34975, and so have been generating bills off these figures far lower than the ones I actually gave.
    Call me naive for not noticing that our electricity bills were suspiciously low (about £60 a month), but itís just the two of us and we are mostly out, and I have no prior experience of average electricity costs.

    We budget based on projected bills each month, and do not have the spare cash to pay a back bill of such an amount.
    Not to mention, I believe it would be unfair to bill us for under payments from the date in January when I gave them the correct readings, as their employees erroneously inputted the wrong figures into my account, landing us with a gigantic catchup debit in one go.

    Iíve spoken to them on the phone and they seem unwilling to admit fault or provide advice until and actual bill is generated next week, but just wanted possible advice on whether they are liable in any way for their mistake, as we are pretty stressed and distraught.

    Thank you for reading, apologies for the length of this post.
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  • #2
    Hi JRWW

    Firstly, try not to worry.

    a) Send the energy company a Subject Access Request, they have 30 days to send you all the details on the account. Make sure you get Proof of Postage.


    This will show that they were given the correct meter readings, but their fault for inputting them incorrectly.

    b) Send the energy company a dispute letter, amend the template below. Make sure you get Proof of Postage.


    This will hopefully put the matter on hold until you get the SAR data from the company.


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