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Ofgem orders TruEnergy Ltd to improve its process for setting direct debits

Today (Thursday 28 July 2022), Ofgem has issued energy supplier TruEnergy Ltd with a Provisional Order compelling it to take action to ensure that its direct debit policy and processes are fit for purpose, and to ensure that customer direct debits are set at the right level.  

This follows a robust review conducted by Ofgem into the way all suppliers set their direct debits which highlighted significant concerns with TruEnergy Ltd.  

TruEnergy Ltd is a domestic and non-domestic supplier, serving approximately 7,500 customers across the UK.  

TruEnergy Ltd is now required to: 

  • Commission an independent audit to assess whether its direct debit policies and processes are compliant with its regulatory requirements. 
  • Review the direct debit level of all customers who use this payment method and make any adjustments as appropriate. 

TruEnergy Ltd is required to complete these actions, and we expect them to continue to engage with Ofgem in a constructive manner during the process.  

Charles Hargreaves, Deputy Director, Enforcement, Conduct & Enforcement, Consumers & Markets for Ofgem, said:  

“We know how hard it is for energy customers right now so it’s crucial that the amount they pay each month by direct debit, or otherwise, is right so they can manage their money.  

“Today’s enforcement action is the next step in following through on the findings from our recent review. We need suppliers to step up and support their customers, especially during these very difficult times, and as regulator, we’ll be making sure they do so.” 

Failure to comply with this Provisional Order may result in further enforcement action being taken by Ofgem.  

The next market compliance review into suppliers will focus on customer service, later this year. 

Notes to Editors 

  • PRESS RELEASE: Ofgem requires improvements from energy suppliers on customer direct debits | Ofgem  
  • The obligation to comply with the relevant licence conditions (“SLC”) 4A.1 (Operational capability) and SLC 27.15 (Provision of Information) is enforceable by the Authority (Ofgem) as a relevant condition for the purposes of section 25 of the Electricity Act 1989 and section 28 of the Gas Act 1986. If the Authority considers that a licensee has contravened (and continues to contravene) a licence obligation, it may take enforcement action.  
  • Our decision to impose this Provisional Order is a consequence of our Market Compliance Review which focused on customer direct debit payments. 
  • Timings: The independent audit report is to be completed and submitted to Ofgem by 19 August, and the review and adjustments as appropriate of all direct debits by 16 September.

 

Channel website: https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/

Original article link: https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/publications/ofgem-orders-truenergy-ltd-improve-its-process-setting-direct-debits

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