Gas suppliers are investigating their consumer meters after E.On discovered that around 600 of its residential and small business customers have been incorrectly charged for gas, due to metric meters being incorrectly registered as imperial meters or vice versa. This caused either a significant undercharge or significant overcharge to the customer for their gas consumption.
E.On raised the issue with Energy UK and Ofgem after it discovered that the mismatch had caused around 350 of its current customers had been overcharged and 250 current customers had been undercharged. Other Energy UK members have committed to Ofgem to identify affected customers by 19 August 2016. Energy UK are providing guidance to suppliers on checks that can be conducted to identify potentially affected meters for further analysis, and suppliers can request help from Ofgem to anonymise data before sharing.
Eon will refund the overcharged customers in full plus interest and an ex-gratia payment “reflective of the detriment caused”. It will not make undercharged customers repay the difference and will provide an appropriate cushion for financially vulnerable customers to ease the transition to larger, accurate bills. In an open letter to gas suppliers, Ofgem encouraged other suppliers to adopt the same approach.
The industry body, Energy UK, said: “Energy UK and its members are working hard to address the issue of the incorrect recording of imperial and metric gas meters. So far, detailed analysis shows an extremely small number of accounts have been affected, so customers need not worry. Any customer affected will be contacted shortly by their supplier and where there has been overcharging, a refund will be issued as quickly as possible.”
A spokesperson for Ofgem said: ”Ofgem is aware that a very small number of gas customers are being incorrectly charged for their energy use and has taken fast action. Working with Energy UK, we’re ensuring suppliers take immediate and decisive action to identify affected customers. E.on has done the right thing in coming forward.
The regulator added: “Ofgem is working with suppliers to ensure consumers don’t lose out. This includes suppliers setting out plans to redress their affected customers, and to reach a quick resolution.”
Read more: Ofgem open letter to gas suppliers
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