Energy companies are being ordered to pay for incorrect meter fittings

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According to the regulator, energy companies should begin making payments to consumers whose homes were improperly fitted with prepayment meters without waiting for the findings of a thorough investigation.

Companies need to review their own meter installations right away, according to Jonathan Brearley, chief executive of Ofgem.

Up until the end of March, there won't be any forced prepayment fittings.

It happened after British Gas debt collectors forced meters into the homes of vulnerable people.

Ofgem is currently outlining the parameters of its review of the laws, ordinances, and instructions governing prepayment meters.

Public comments will be taken into consideration during the investigation, which will be finished by the end of March. We'll soon make an announcement about how customers can share specifics about their experiences.

According to Mr. Brearley, any persistent issues would result in supplier fines, but the regulator had made the rules clear to businesses. He also rejected the claim that Ofgem was acting too slowly on the matter.

He said on BBC Radio 4's Today program: "Companies should fix it right away if they know they installed a prepayment meter improperly.".

According to him, doing so entailed switching the meter back to a regular one and compensating the customer if that was what they desired.

The regulator will also look specifically into British Gas's actions to see if it adhered to the guidelines in its license to assist indebted customers before installing prepayment meters.

According to Mr. Brearley, "clearly something has gone wrong" at British Gas, and an impartial, thorough investigation will be conducted.

Customers of prepayment meters top up their meters with credit, which depletes as their homes' energy use does.

Due to rising energy costs and other cost-of-living pressures, charities and campaigners claim that many people are now unable to pay their meters.

Energy UK, a trade association for suppliers, has repeatedly pointed out that customers who fail to pay their regular bills can leave suppliers with unpaid debts.

Without the option of switching over to prepayment meters, these mounting debts would have to be paid off by collecting on the bills of everyone else.

More than four million households in the UK use prepayment meters.

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