Eon has been ordered to pay back around £1.4m to energy customers who have been incorrectly overcharged.
Energy watchdog Ofgem found that Eon incorrectly charged 94,000 customers exit fees following price rises between 2008 and 2011. Eon is contacting all those affected and providing them with a rebate of £14.83 on average, which includes interest on the original amount.
Which? executive director Richard Lloyd said: ‘Record numbers of people are worried about energy prices, so we’re glad to see Ofgem taking action on behalf of consumers who were incorrectly charged. Following the latest round of energy bill hikes, distrust in energy companies has increased significantly, which is why we want an independent review to look at whether recent energy price increases are justified.’
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Switch without penalty when prices rise
Ofgem’s rules state that if an energy supplier increases its prices, consumers don’t have to pay exit fees if they want to switch suppliers. The regulator said today that Eon broke its rules by charging exit fees when it increased prices.
If an energy supplier intends to raise its prices, it must write to customers to let you know when the price rise will take effect. You then have a 15 day grace period in which you can switch suppliers and avoid paying any exit fees.
Ofgem has been investigating this matter since November 2011 when Eon first brought the issue to its attention. The energy giant has agreed to make an additional payment of around £300,000 to partner charity Age UK as a goodwill gesture.
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