Spark Energy Billing Problem

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Energy
3 replies 1.2K views
PollyannaBPollyannaB Forumite
3 Posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Energy
Hi
My account with Spark Energy is massively in credit. I asked them for a refund on Tuesday last week (21st February.) I received an email on Friday ( 24th Feb) to state that the refund couldn't be processed due to no reading on my account. This was rectified with a quick email and I was told my refund would be processed.

I've received an email today (27th Feb) from finance that my refund is going to be a smaller amount , less by £175.17 due to Spark Energy stating that there are negative bills on the account. They have gone through all the bills changing the amounts, and the readings on the bills. I saved all the bills last week and each bill now has different readings for the usage of gas/electricity (majority of the readings are estimates except a couple of readings I have submitted.) and amounts that were due. This is over a three year period.

Are they able to go backwards through the account to alter the bills for the account? I thought energy companies were not allowed to do this. Especially as I haven't had my meter read in a long while and the bills mainly show estimate readings.

The direct debits on the account had been increased where it was not necessary-hence the account accruing a massive balance. They also only add statements to the account twice a year so it's really hard to keep track of the energy consumption.

So before I contact Spark Energy again do I have any grounds for complaint that my bills have been altered?

Thanks in advance for any assistance you may be able to give me.

P x

Replies

  • SystemSystem Forumite
    177.9K Posts
    10,000 Posts Name Dropper
    ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    Hi - welcome to the forum. Consumers get very confused about DDs and credit/debit balances. DDs are only payments made on account. Credit/Debit balances are only accurate on a given day provided that an actual meter reading has been used. When you requested a refund of your credit balance, Spark would have asked for an actual meter reading to give them an accurate indication of the amount of credit. This would have involved a reversal of your last bill followed by an updated bill based on the meter reading that you provided.

    That said, you may have a case to ask Spark to invoke the Back Billing Code but without seeing the detail it is difficult to tell. Remember, incorrect billing does happen and when the error has been detected, suppliers have a right to update your account.
  • moleratmolerat Forumite
    24.9K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Photogenic
    ✭✭✭✭✭
    IMO they have no right to re bill beyond your last supplied / actual reading. When was your meter last read or you supplied a reading ?
  • edited 27 February 2017 at 7:03PM
    dogshomedogshome Forumite
    3.8K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper
    ✭✭✭✭
    edited 27 February 2017 at 7:03PM
    Very annoying when suppliers revisit old bills and change the numbers - The only defence against this is to compare your Start Reading on the account with the End Reading on the latest bill, and work out what your total comsumption has been - There then can be no arguement with the Kwh you have been billed for

    Check each of the revised bills:
    Does the Start Reading agree with yours ?
    Does the End Reading agree with yours ?
    On each revised bill, does the Start Reading match the End Reading of the previous bill?

    OK, it's a lot of homework to prove Spark's figures right or wrong, but Spark's business model is based on a formula designed to circumvent free market competition, so there's always a worry about everything else.

    Last point, whatever it says in your lease document about Spark as the Energy supplier, you can Switch to any other supplier you want to
This discussion has been closed.
Latest MSE News and Guides

Energy price cap could be extended beyond 2023

New plans have just been announced by the Government

MSE News

Cheap contents insurance for tenants

DON'T assume your landlord covers you

MSE Guides

Summer sizzlers round-up

Incl £2ish sun cream & £1.50 disposable BBQs

MSE Deals