THREE major energy suppliers have paid out compensation to thousands of customers worth £70 on average each.
E.ON Next, Good Energy and Octopus Energy have paid out a total of £8million for delaying or failing to make compensation payments owed to customers.
Under industry rules, energy providers have to make compensation payments if they don't provide a final bill within six weeks of a customer switching to a different company.
Almost 95,000 E.On Next customers have been paid a total of £5.5million between them.
Meanwhile, Octopus Energy paid roughly £750,000 out to 19,000 customers.
Good Energy paid a combined total of £18,000 to nearly 350 customers.
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The payouts come after the regulator Ofgem brought in new rules in May 2020 to reduce delays in billing customers for the final time.
This is the first time they have been used since being brought in.
The rules mean that providers have to offer compensation to customers when:
- energy supplier switches are delayed
- customers are wrongly switched, or
- final bills are produced too late
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It is expected the new set of standards will be crucial this year with more customers predicted to switch providers.
Neil Kenward, director for strategy at Ofgem, said: “Ofgem introduced these standards to make sure customers get the service they deserve when switching energy supplier.
"Our rules mean that where energy companies drag their heels, customers are automatically compensated.
"We won’t hesitate to hold energy companies to account, as we have done today.
"As the energy market starts to recover, we’ll likely see a return to more switching, and this action is a reminder to suppliers that they need to make switching as easy and convenient as possible for their customers, and where they cause undue delay, pay compensation swiftly."
It comes as energy bills for millions of households stand at £2,500 on average a year.
These are forecast to drop from July, when the Government's energy price guarantee is stopped.
The Sun approached E.ON Next, Good Energy and Octopus Energy for a comment.
What help can I get with my energy bills?
There is help on offer if you're struggling with your energy bills.
Depending on your circumstances, you might be entitled to a cost of living payment.
There are three payments in total, worth £900, £150-£300 and £150 which are being paid between now and Spring 2024.
But you won't qualify for the payments unless you hit certain criteria, including being on benefits and over a certain age.
Meanwhile, you might be able to get help via the Household Support Fund – which was recently extended until March 2024.
What help you can get depends on where you live, as it is being distributed by local councils.
But, most of the time it comes in the form of a direct bank transfer or vouchers.
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You should check with your local council to see if you are eligible for any help.
If you don't know what local council area you fall under, you can use the Government's council locator tool.
Do you have a money problem that needs sorting? Get in touch by emailing [email protected]
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