Delay in new connection following bushfire

John’s house was lost to the bushfires in November 2019. Luckily a shed remained on his property, so John decided to move into it, and asked his electricity retailer to connect the power there.

As there was no National Meter Identifier (NMI) for the property, the retailer asked John to request a new connection. His new connection request was rejected several times due to missing information, but was finally accepted on 22 November 2019. By 2 December however, the new meter had not been installed, so John contacted EWON.

We contacted the retailer to find out the reason for the delay and confirm when the meter would be installed. The meter was successfully installed on 10 December and John had working electricity by 14 December 2019.

Initially, the retailer agreed to a credit of $50 for the delay, however, we felt that was not fair and reasonable. We pointed out that it was not reasonable for a customer impacted by bushfires to have the information requested in the application readily available. Also, while NSW does not stipulate a particular penalty for delays in new connections, in Victoria energy retailers are required to pay customers $70 for each day a connection is delayed.

Outcome: The retailer agreed to increase the credit to $700, waive all installation costs and assess the customer for its hardship program. This resulted in a total credit of $1,403.38.

If you’ve been affected by the bushfires and have an issue with your energy or water, let your provider know. If they can't resolve your complaint, get in touch.

Read more about available bushfire support.