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E.ON overcharges customers

E.ON has agreed to pay £7.75 million for overcharging customers. E.ON were found to have incorrectly charged exit fees and overcharged customers after price increases.

E.ON has already paid back £400,000 to customers. The company continues to provide refunds to customers affected by the errors.

Regulations state that suppliers have to give customers 30 days’ notice of a price rise. This ensures the customer has time to decide whether to stay or switch to another provider. If the customer decides to switch during the 30 days’ notice period they won’t incur exit fees. They also won’t be subject to increased prices even if they switch energy provider after the price increase takes place.

The errors date back to January 2013 and January 2014 and affect direct debit and standard credit customers. But the energy regulator Ofgem said the errors also affected prepayment customers – who tend to be the least well off. E.ON has to refund these customers by the end of April.

E.ON admitted that after investigating the errors in June 2014 it found that some customers had been overcharged. It added that in the majority of cases this was by less than ten pounds.

E.ON will continue to provide refunds to ensure customers don’t lose out. It has agreed to pay £7.75 million to Citizens Advice. This money will be used to fund its Energy Best Deal Extra engagement programme which provides energy advice.

Senior partner in charge of enforcement Sarah Harrison said: “Ofgem’s rules give customers a chance to avoid exit fees and higher costs when suppliers put up prices. These are important customer protections and it is vital that suppliers play by the rules so customers are encouraged to engage in the market.”

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