How can I get my electric service reconnected in Texas?
If you forget to pay your bill or have an issue with your billing or auto-pay not working, you’re likely facing what most of us have dealt with at one time or another: electricity disconnection.
Your electric service can be reconnected, usually within 24-48 hours, by paying all overdue charges and disconnection and reconnection fees. If you cannot afford to pay your past-due balance today, you can try to set up a payment plan with your provider, or you can shop for another light company with no deposit here on ComparePower.
Shop for a new electric company and sign up in about 10 minutes with no deposit.
You will still owe your previous company your outstanding balance, but you may be able to get your lights on the same day with a new energy company while you sort out a payment plan with your old provider.
If you opt to stay with your current electric provider and pay your balance, you could be asked to make a deposit equal to one-fifth of your average annual billings or the next two months’ estimated billings, whichever is greater. Retail Electric Providers (REP) may request an additional deposit from an existing customer if a termination or disconnect notice has been issued or the account has been disconnected within the previous 12 months.
Light company disconnects in Texas
By understanding your obligations and rights regarding the electric service disconnection process, you may be able to avoid the cost and hassle of losing your electric service.
Your service agreement with a Retail Electric Provider (REP) is a legal contract. If you fail to pay your bill on time or violate other parts of your agreement, the provider may have your electric service disconnected.
In the event that your power is turned off, you may have to pay disconnection and reconnection fees and a deposit to have your service reconnected.
If you receive a disconnection notice or find that your power is out, call your electricity company.
Even if you cannot afford to make a payment, if you have a good standing payment history most electric companies will work with you to set up a payment arrangement.
Don’t wait until it is too late. Be proactive and call your provider.
When can my electric service be disconnected in Texas?
Under the rules of the Public Utility Commission of Texas, a REP may disconnect service after proper notice:
- If you don’t pay your bill on time or don’t make arrangements with the REP to pay the charges you owe over time.
- If you don’t meet the terms of any deferred payment arrangement you’ve made with your REP.
- If you use your electric service in an unsafe manner as outlined in your service agreement.
- If you fail to pay deposits as required by your REP.
A REP may disconnect service without prior notice:
- If there’s an immediate safety issue.
- If the service is unauthorized or hooked up without a service contract.
- If the power company’s equipment, such as the meter, has been tampered with.
A REP cannot disconnect your service for the following reasons:
- If a previous resident of your home didn’t pay his/her electric bill on time.
- For not paying charges unrelated to electric service.
- For charges that are in dispute until the dispute has been settled in favor of the REP.
- For charges that didn’t appear on your bill or were billed in error.
- For charges due to under billing of service that was provided more than six months before your current billing period.
- If the National Weather Service issues a heat advisory or a cold alert in your area.
- For failure to pay an estimated bill other than a bill rendered pursuant to an approved meter-reading plan.
What if my electric service contract is canceled for non-payment?
In cases where there is no immediate safety issue or evidence of theft of service, the REP must provide written notice of its intention to shut off your power at least ten (10) days before the disconnection date.
The notice must tell you why your service is being disconnected, what you can do to avoid disconnection, the charges you will have to pay for disconnection and reconnection, and the total amount that’s overdue.
The notice must explain how you can make arrangements to pay your overdue bill over time and tell you how the company will try to collect your unpaid charges if you do not pay or don’t make deferred payment arrangements before the shut-off date.
There are special rules for disconnecting service for seriously ill or disabled customers whose health would be impaired by shutting off power, customers served by energy assistance programs, and residents of master-metered apartments.
If you fail to meet your obligations by the disconnection date, your service may be shut off the next day unless that day is a weekend or holiday.
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How do I report a Power outage?
In the event of a power outage, please immediately contact your local poles wires company (TDSP) listed below:
- CenterPoint Energy, 713-207-2222 or 1-800-332-7143
- Oncor Electric Delivery, 1-888-313-4747
- Texas New Mexico Power, 1-888-866-7456
- AEP, 1-866-223-8508
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