Energy supplier Iresa goes bust: what it means for you

27 July 2018
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Energy supplier Iresa has gone under, affecting just under 100,000 households.

The announcement follows long-drawn concerns from the regulator about the supplier’s customer services processes.

In February, Ofgem launched an investigation into whether Iresa was treating customers fairly, while it was then banned from taking on new customers in March.

Iresa isn’t the first energy supplier to fall into administration, earlier this year Future Energy went under with Green Star Energy taking on former customers. However, comparison website uSwitch says Iresa is only the third household energy supplier to go out of business in a decade.  

Here’s what affected customers need to know about the supplier going bust.

I’m an Iresa customer, will my supply stop?

No. Ofgem says customers’ energy supply will continue as normal while it chooses a new supplier to take on Iresa customers. This supplier will contact customers individually once appointed.

I’m an Iresa customers, should I switch supplier?

No. Ofgem warns customers not to switch supplier yet. It instead advises users to take a meter reading today, and to then “sit tight” and wait for the new supplier to get in touch.

You will, of course, be able to switch away from the new supplier once it’s been appointed. Ofgem confirms that you won’t be charged exit fees for switching in this instance.

I’m an Iresa customer, will I lose any credit on my account?

No. Ofgem says any customers with credit on their energy account will have their balances protected under its “safety net”.

Once you’ve been switched to Ofgem’s appointed new supplier, it will pay you the outstanding money back. This is why it’s important not to switch until the new supplier has been appointed.

I was in debt to Iresa, will I still need to pay this off?

This depends on what the new supplier agrees with Iresa’s administrators.

You will need to pay back the debt to your new supplier if it arranges to take on customer debts. But you won’t need to pay back the debt to your new supplier if it doesn’t make this arrangement.

However, you may have to continue to pay it back to Iresa or its administrator.

‘No need to worry’

Rob Salter-Church, Ofgem’s interim executive director for consumers and markets, comments: “If you are an Iresa customer there is no need to worry as we will make sure your energy supplies are secure and your credit balance is protected.

“Ofgem is working to choose a new supplier as quickly as possible for you. While we’re doing this our advice is to ‘sit tight’ and don’t switch. Your energy supply will not be affected and will continue as normal – the thing that will change is that your energy will come from a new supplier.”

Visit Ofgem’s help page for more information about what happens when an energy supplier goes bust.  

Comments

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

Iresa was always easy to deal with and I was a satisfied customer for several years. What I wasn't so happy about was that between Iresa and Octopus (who I was defaulted to), they managed to come up with an outrageous outstanding balance of nearly £500 despite my account always being in credit and up to date.When I looked into it, I found that over 700 units of gas were ficticiously added to my final month estimate, which equates to more than a years worth of usage. So Octopus sent me any e-mail that told me my final bill was calculated and all I needed to do was click on "I agree" automatically to accept and sign up. Luckily I was bothered enough to scroll down the e-mail and see the "I disagree", option, that allowed me to state my case. I'm awaiting the outcome of my challenge.I wonder how many Iresa customer just clicked on "I Agree", and paid up without checking their account. Fortunately, Iresa customers can still check their account and billing details online.

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

i am in credit with iresa and they have estimated my usage which is more than it is..Will i lose out?

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

All very well, 'sitting tight' but no indication how quickly a new supplier will be appointed and at what rate will we be charged and starting from when? - Will the same cheap Iresa rate be honoured or will we be charged some 'anonymous supplier's' standard (high cost) tariff? If the Iresa rate is honoured, for how long and will it be honoured until I switch if I don't want, for whatever reason, to be with the new supplier?Overall, sorry to see Iresa go, I definitely suffered customer communication problems especially when I switched to them but they did improve considerably after the Ofgem warning and my account had been running without any problems. So Ofgem may have been a bit hasty from my experience but there may of course be other issues we've not been told about.

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