Hartlepool energy customer calls for people to check bills after £162 demand error

Nicola Lane with the energy bill which she disputed and has now had paid back to her.
Nicola Lane with the energy bill which she disputed and has now had paid back to her.

An energy customer was sent a demand for £162 in error after her supplier went into administration.

Nicola Lane, who suffers from anxiety, says she was physically sick when she received the bill on behalf of administrators for her former gas and electricity supplier Future Energy.

The letter said the amount had been calculated based on the tariff she joined on. But Miss Lane’s showed a different tariff.

After contacting the administrators as well as the Mail, they accepted an error had been made and have credited her the money.

Miss Lane, of Sheriff Street, Hartlepool, is now urging other customers to check their bills and to take action if they feel there has been a mistake.

She said: “Essentially they were applying the new tariff, which was a bit higher to last year’s billing.

“I looked at it and thought I couldn’t possibly owe that much. Thanks to a concerned citizen and the actions of the Hartlepool Mail the administrators realised there was a glitch.

“They have looked at it and successfully resolved my case and they are looking to make sure nobody else has been affected.”

Allan Kelly, of administrators RSM Restructuring Advisory LLP, said they had reviewed more than 20,000 customer accounts to work out people’s bills.

He said: “Whilst every effort has been made to check the information, any errors which may exist will be present in the source data which is outside the administrators’ control and unverifiable within the confines of the insolvency.

“However, from a review of the total tariff make-up, we consider that any misapplication of tariff will be limited.

“In regard to Miss Lane’s case, we have investigated this further and during a change of the Future Energy billing systems, the tariff customers that were contracted at that stage have been shown in the subsequent billing system as being their original tariff not necessarily the tariff they joined Future Energy on. The error has been rectified and a credit has been issued to Miss Lane.”