My energy supplier has raised its prices, do I have to pay?

If your energy supplier increases any charges set out in your contract, you have right to end the contract without paying a penalty.

Price rises mid-contract

Energy regulator Ofgem states that if energy suppliers increase any charges set out in a customer's contract, the customer has the right to end that contract.

This applies to people on variable rate, fixed-term energy contracts.

The charges you can avoid include the cost of energy, but also charges such as late payment charges or changes to discounts.

If you think you might be missing out on the cheapest energy deal, you can use Which? Switch to compare energy prices and ensure you're on the best tariff.

Top tips

  • If you think you might be missing out on a better energy deal, use Which? Switch to compare energy suppliers
  • You must tell your current supplier if you want to leave, by the date the price increase comes into effect
  • Your new supplier must contact your old supplier within 15 days of the price increase to tell them you're switching


Switching suppliers

If your energy company raises prices you shouldn’t have to pay a penalty for switching away from them, as the price change is effectively a change in the contract you originally signed up for.

If an energy supplier intends to raise its prices, it must write to you to explain this, and it must let you know the date from which the price rise will take effect.

If you are switching suppliers, don't forget that you must clear any arrears with your existing supplier first. 

Time to switch

If you want to leave, you must tell your supplier that you want to leave by the date the price increase takes effect.

And, your new supplier must contact your current supplier within 15 working days of the price increase to tell them you’re switching. 

Both of these things must happen if you're to avoid any charges.

It’s particularly important to bear this in mind if you’re on a tariff where you have to pay exit fees if you break your contract early. 

These fees can't be charged in the event of a price increase and you decide to switch suppliers. 


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The energy market is broken, with millions of people paying more than they should. We’re urging the competition inquiry to reduce the number of people on poor value tariffs, make it easier to switch and penalise suppliers who fail to protect the most vulnerable. The CMA will be judged on the legacy of this inquiry - if it doesn’t deliver a fairer energy market for consumers, it will have failed.
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