Miriam's story: water supply not reinstated due to credit history
SUPPLY RESTRICTION / FINANCIAL HARDSHIP
Miriam and Dave’s water is restricted due to non-payment and they are denied a payment plan
For three weeks the water supply at Miriam’s home was restricted due to non-payment of the $1120 owing on the account. Miriam and her husband Dave were experiencing financial hardship as Miriam’s work hours had been reduced and Dave’s employment had also been downgraded. Miriam considered they could manage a weekly payment plan of $150 and put this to the water company. When she contacted EWON, she explained that the company had declined any payment arrangement and required payment in full before they would reinstate the water supply.
EWON contacted the water company to discuss the case. We were advised that there was a history of debt collection on the account, that Miriam and Dave had been on the hardship program previously but hadn’t kept up payments and that their supply had been also been restricted before due to non-payment. On this basis the company required full payment of arrears.
We negotiated with the water provider, who agreed to reinstate the supply on payment of half of the total amount owing and a payment plan of $150 per week. Miriam and Dave accepted this arrangement and understood that they would be required to pay any debt in full if they were restricted again for non-payment.
We referred Miriam and Dave to a community agency where they could apply for PAS* vouchers and they were pleased to have their water supply restored.
* PAS – The water Payment Assistance Scheme providing vouchers and/or account credit to assist customers of certain water providers if they are experiencing financial hardship.
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