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Access to Utility Service

Disconnections, Utility Bill Assistance Programs, Metering, Payments, and Telecommunications

Delivery of electricity, gas, water, and telecommunications services are some of the biggest problem areas for consumers today. New energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies are increasingly available through a wide range of programs, federal incentives, and risky financing products. Skyrocketing prices, de-regulation, and widespread terminations all make access to utility service an area essential to a consumer law practice.

What You Need to Know in This Evolving Area

  • Rights to prevent disconnections and to reconnect service
  • Discount rates and affordability programs, such as Percentage of Income
  • Payment programs
  • Consumer protections during extreme weather
  • Deposits, late charges, level billing plans, master metering, other metering issues
  • Right to utility service
  • Federal fuel assistance program (LIHEAP)
  • Weatherization and energy efficiency programs
  • Utility allowances in subsidized housing
  • Tenant strategies to maintain service despite landlord non-payment
  • Manufactured homes and utility service
  • Using bankruptcy to restore service
  • Utility service from municipal utilities and rural electric co-ops
  • Oil, propane, and other deliverable fuels.
  • Telecommunications issues
  • Affordable water service



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2024 7th ed.

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