The Big Six energy companies received a total of 1.7 million consumer complaints in the first quarter of 2014 alone. This is the highest number received in one single quarter since records began in 2012.
Npower received the highest number of complaints, with 83 for every 1,000 customers. In contrast, Scottish Power received the fewest complaints, with 13 for every 1,000 customers.
The number of complaints received by both SSE and British Gas has doubled over the past six months, joining Eon at around 30 complaints per 1,000 customers.
Our executive director, Richard Lloyd, said:
'Yet again millions of customers are being let down by poor service from the Big Six energy companies. This has to change.'
He added: 'If they want to improve the low level of consumer trust in the energy market, suppliers must up their game now, rather than wait for the results of a competition review.'
We're campaigning to Fix the Big Six, calling for radical reforms from the Government, Ofgem and the energy suppliers – you can help by signing our petition.
Eon has agreed to pay £12m to vulnerable customers after Ofgem’s investigation unearthed large scale mis-selling.
Ofgem’s investigation found that the energy supplier had been giving incorrect information to customers between June 2010 to December 2013, which could have misled them.
Ofgem didn’t find any evidence that Eon had set out to deliberately mis-sell to customers, however, it did find the company had failed to properly train and monitor staff.
Eon’s large scale mis-selling has resulted in the biggest ever supplier pay-out, with £12m put aside for customers.
Eon will pay around £35 to 333,000 Warm Home Discount customers. Automatic payments will be paid to some vulnerable customers, and 465,000 will receive letters to see if they are entitled to compensation. Eon has also set up a dedicated hotline, 0800 0568 497, for customers to get in touch.
Eon chief executive Tony Cocker has apologised to customers, adding:
‘It is completely unacceptable that we may have been unclear with customers about their tariff choices and as a result those customers may not have made the best choices for them.’
In response to the fine, our executive director Richard Lloyd said:
‘While this fine sends a clear warning message that mis-selling won't be tolerated, it's too late for customers who were mis-sold and the damage to consumer confidence in the energy industry has already been done.’
Our investigations in 2011 found clear evidence that suppliers weren't giving people the best deal - it's extraordinary that mis-selling has continued for so long.
Richard Lloyd added:
‘Energy suppliers should not wait for the outcome of the proposed competition review and must seize their last chance to sort out woeful service standards and put customers first.’
We think you should be able to trust that the price you pay for your energy is fair. If you want to help us Fix the Big Six, sign our petition and get your friends and family to do the same.
The outcome of the long-awaited energy market assessment was released this morning and it’s good news for the 45,000 of you who backed our Fix the Big Six campaign.
SSE has announced a price freeze until 2016 for all of its customers. In a win for our Fix the Big Six campaign, SSE has also announced plans to separate its retail and wholesale businesses.