There’s no shortage of customer testimonies when it comes to E.ON’s frustrating billing processes. Victims often take to social media and consumer group sites to air their grievances towards the company, recalling their unfortunate billing experiences.
One E.ON customer posted on The Consumer Action Group’s website seeking advice regarding his billing concern. They stated that his previous monthly bill was fixed at only £52 per month. However, he was suddenly given notice by the firm that he owed £700 for three months of electricity consumption.
The customer added that a £140 credit had been previously applied to their account as part of the warm home discount. Despite this, the customer was still asked to pay £720 for their energy consumption.
The unfair situation for this customer – living alone in a small flat – reflects what E.ON customers have been experiencing with the firm’s services.
While an E.ON company representative told the customer that their meter might be broken, no action was taken to rectify the issue. The customer refused to pay the energy bill, as it was likely calculated using an over-estimation of his actual energy consumption.
The customer filed a formal complaint via email, but the situation persisted for months after this. They provided monthly meter readings, but his bill still kept increasing.
An E.ON representative responded to the website post, asking several questions regarding the customer’s heating activities and whether their meter had been checked. The reply also stated that since the customer had cancelled their direct debit payments, their daily standing charge would be higher than usual.
The representative added that a complaint manager would be notified about their complaint in an effort to investigate further and provide a resolution.
A 50-year-old E.ON customer who has been with the company for ten years was taken aback recently when he received a massive electricity bill amounting to £19,000.
David Johnston was shocked to learn of the debt, which was incurred despite his being on a prepayment meter.
He also noticed that his meter had started rapidly ‘eating’ the credits he was topping up – he had paid as much as £130 for only three days service.
Upon contacting E.ON, David found that his outstanding bill was over £11,000. Later on it increased further – to £19.470.36 – which is why the meter was consuming his prepaid credit so rapidly.
David and his wife Fiona were adamant that there was no way they could have owed money, because they used a prepaid meter.
However, E.ON maintained that their home’s storage heaters weren’t connected to their prepayment meter.
They found out later that their home has a complicated four-reading meter. The couple, along with sons Callum and Craig, had no billing problems during the twenty years they had lived in their home until they decided to switch to E.ON.
A representative for the Big Six energy supplier asked the customer to check his online account – which he hadn’t been told existed until that point. However, he was told not to worry and that the firm would look into writing off his debt. Unfortunately, the bill kept rising the longer it remained unresolved.
The couple asked to have a smart meter installed after seeing the steady increase in their bills, but no one approached them to arrange for this installation.
After some time, a representative finally reached out to tell them that their debt had been written off. The firm also apologised to David and his family, indicating that they only need to continue topping up their prepayment meter to use energy.
In 2015, E.ON was fined a hefty sum of £7.75 million for incorrectly charging its customers. Industry regulator Ofgem found the firm to be wrongly charging exit fees, and overcharging some of its clients after the 2013 and 2014 price increases.
Based on Ofgem guidelines, energy suppliers need to provide a 30-day notice to customers relating to any rise in prices. If a customer wants to switch suppliers during this time, they should not be subject to exit fees or higher energy tariffs. E.ON was found to have violated both of these rules.
Around 400,000 E.ON customers were affected by this, including 7,000 prepayment meter customers.