New rules for energy retailers in 2017
Tough new rules to better protect households and small businesses in their dealings with energy retailers came into effect on January 1, 2017.
Following a review of the Energy Consumer Protection Act, 2010, the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) recommended several new measures to strengthen consumer protection.
New measures that came into force on January 1:
- Ban door-to-door energy retailers from signing you up for an energy contract while they are at your home
- Place limits on when energy retailers can come to your home to market or advertise their business
- Extend the time that consumers can cancel an energy contract without penalty to 30 days after they receive their second bill under the energy contract
- Require all energy contracts – even those entered into online – to be verified by the consumer 10-45 days after they’ve entered into the contract to confirm that they wish to continue with it
- Eliminate auto-renewal of all energy contracts
- Reduce cancellation fees for most residential consumers
- Require energy retailers to include OEB-approved plain language terms and conditions in their energy contracts
Door-to-door energy retailers can present consumers with information at the door of their home at certain times, but they can no longer sign them up for a contract when they are there. This gives residential consumers more time to consider whether an energy contract is right for them and make an informed decision.
For more information, visit oeb.ca/knockknock