Ombudsman, ScottishPower both ignore evidence and correct resolution
Since 2018, I have recorded many screens (chat screenshots, submitted evidence by Scottish Power, messages/communications from both) showing so many errors over many years, during which they overcharged me and also applied debt charges. Scottish Power admitted to ombudsman their previous accounting system failure ('we assigned different account numbers but then remained with the original one, and so forth') and admitted that they did not respond to my many contact efforts to resolve these problems.
(Previously, 2017, SP refused to refund my overpayment and only when CAB stepped in, did they refund me the £800.00 they had kept back from me. My monthly bills were less than £50.00. This was up to 2017, when billing was more simple, and my credit amount could be seen, and CAB had authority to step in. Since then I have been constantly vigilant over these bills. Immediately I began seeing inflated bills once more.)
2019 I opened a claim with OE. Ombudsman's decision outlined a revised and corrected bill without estimated readings.
Scottish Power did not respond to Ombudsman for two years, then submitted what the OE called a data dump of blank pages they said were the bills. I had to repeatedly ask ombudsman to act, and they 'escalated' 3 times. The final result was no corrected billing but instead, 3 different spreadsheets as 'statement of account' and 'statement of information,' which only offer more errors and unexplained charges.
In these 6 years Scottish Power has added more and more complications abuses so as to complicate any logical resolution: they often bill many times within one month, or even when actual readings were supplied and the bill was paid in full they rebill several months in together as if I owed for 'this period,' they record cancelled charges that have no relation to anything while simultaneeously submitting falsely 'no payment made,' they move the bill dates around from just after the submitted actual readings to later in the month, to enable them to sneak in an estimated reading or charge a late fee.
I have been repeatedly failed by the ombudsman as it appears they don't actually read any of the uploaded evidence files and certainly not the final spreadsheets which don't add up and violate the original decisions. I have all the hard evidence...all is documented.
1. Submitted evidence to OE by SP is numerous files, all blank pages. EO said 'we'll check with SP and get back to you.' No result.
2. My screenshot of a double billing of the same exact amount on the same date/time: SP chat a year on from the billing error insisted this was the invoice and I was to pay it. SP only corrected this in the spreadsheet more than 2 years later, explained away as the accounting error, now rebilled in the following year! and OE accepts this, which means they are accepting that Sp can cover up their fraud by simply putting the charge on any date, not the date of the usage reading!
3. Now in 2023, a first spreadsheet was sent me by ombudsman was wrong, admitted to being so by the ombudsman, that he had been in error. This was supposed to be the resolution, and OE closed the case. I queried and OE said they would check with SP again.
4. Second spreadsheet arrives with different numbers but essentially the same: maths errors, mysterious entries I had not seen before, bills that did not correspond, cancellations over months with rebilling, no metre readings corresponding to billings, a category mysteriously titled 'consumption billing credit' which sometimes is a + and other times a -, no explanation. Charges have a note of whether the reading was actual or estimated, no numbers, no detail if it was gas or electric. Estimated charges remain alongside actual charges( meaning I am being charged both the estimated and the actual usage!) When I pointed this out there was no answer to this by the ombudsman. Again I queried the estimated readings still remain charged.
5. Third spreadsheet contains numerous mathematical errors, and as the previous, do not have readings attached to the bills, just a notation of 'actual reading' or 'estimated reading.'
Even though all three spreadsheets have different numbers, dates, and added categories inbetween but they all arrive at approximately' -£1200.00 debt I owe.'
SP have re-listed the dates going forward, then backward and charged for the difference in usage going forwards backward and forward again.
May 2021 63010 real reading
Jul 2021 63477 est....billed as if 3477-3010 = 467 gas units billed
Sep 2021 63010 real...billed as if 3010-3477 = 467 gas units billed
Oct 2021 64149 real... billed as if 3010-4149 = 1,139 gas units billedThe same for electricity.
My OE complaint began on July 2019, so this occured during the complaint!
6. All metre records, including a SAR request, show readings that jump forward and back again.
7. 'Returns send to the customer from DD payments' occured when they tried to direct debit me twice on one day. My bank did not pay the second attempt, however it appears as a charge in my bill on the spreadsheet.
Now, Citizens Advice Bureau, Macmillan advisors, my next door neighbour, everyone that promotes themselves as support only refer me to debt charities as if I don't know how to pay my bills, and this offends me. I don't need charity, I can pay it, as painful as it would be.
They default to 'the Ombudsman is the last authority.' The OE, and all these charities glance at a Scottish Power spreadsheet and without looking at the numbers they assume it is authoritative, when the lies are right there, blatant!
Even though Scottish Power has admitted fault, and just because they provide a 'corrected balance spreadsheet,' they do not question that I will have to pay hundreds in debt advisory charges applied when they were over-billing me. I am getting notices from a debt collection agency.
I am 62yo. have lived in 3 different countries, have always paid my bills and they have always been clear. All countries' energy companies manage to bill me correctly. Any company, any government service I have worked with would have been severely prosecuted for what Scottish Power is able to do here.
There are many news stories and previous attempts by government to make them repay false debt to customers; why does everyone roll over? Is there no one? any one? any way to be supported in standing up to this abusive company?
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