Consumer Assistance: Frequently Asked Questions
What purpose does the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission serve?
The Commission's mission is to assure that utilities and others use adequate planning and resources for the provision of safe and reliable utility services at reasonable cost. Additionally, the IURC serves as a court hearing only matters related to utility companies and the services provided by those companies.
What purpose does the Consumer Affairs Division serve?
It is the mission of the division to ensure utility and customer compliance with IURC rules and regulations through reasonable and timely determinations and to monitor the quality of service provided. Consumer Affairs serves as a mediator between utilities and customers. We do not advocate on behalf of either party. State statute requires Consumer Affairs to remain impartial throughout the investigation of all disputes presented to the division.
How can I file a complaint about my utility?
The IURC requires a utility and customer to attempt to resolve a dispute before invoking the assistance of the IURC's Consumer Affairs Division. If a reasonable resolution is not achieved, you may contact the Consumer Affairs Division for a review of the complaint. You may contact Consumer Affairs via mail, email, telephone, fax or by visiting our office.
Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission
c/o Consumer Affairs Division
101 W. Washington St., Rm., Suite 1500E
Indianapolis, IN 46204
Toll free 1-800-851-4268
FILE AN ONLINE COMPLAINT
My service is scheduled to be disconnected, what should I do?
Call your utility immediately! Ask if you are eligible to set up a payment arrangement (an agreed upon payment schedule). If you are not eligible for an arrangement, inquire as to any other options that may be available to you. If you are unable to reach an agreement with the utility, you may contact Consumer Affairs however, we cannot guarantee any particular outcome. Do not file a complaint via the internet, as time may be of the essence.
What programs are available to help me pay my utility bills?
There are several programs available to assist low-income customers with utility bills. Your utility is the best resource you have. Utilities have information specific to the programs available in your area. Even if you believe you do not qualify for low-income assistance, contact your utility immediately as there may be other payment options available to you. Communication is key to keeping your services on. For further information on available assistance programs, please visit the Assistance Programs section of our website.
Under what circumstances would I have to pay a deposit?
A utility may request a deposit of an existing customer if a bill is late two (2) consecutive months or three (3) times within a 12 month period. A deposit may also be requested if your services are disconnected for non-payment. Additionally, a utility may request a deposit of a new customer, if the utility is unable to determine the creditworthiness of an applicant.
What are my rights as a utility customer in the State of Indiana?
First and foremost, you have the right to safe and reliable service. However, this does not guarantee continuous uninterrupted service. You have the right to dispute a problem with your utility and you have the right to expect it will be handled in a fair and expeditious manner. For specifics relating to consumer rights, you may access the Indiana Administrative Code.
What should I do if I think there is something wrong with my utility meter?
Call your utility and discuss your concerns. You have the right to request the utility conduct a test of the meter.
Is my utility allowed to estimate my usage?
Utilities may estimate your bill for good cause. Good cause may consist of, but not limited to, inclement weather, labor dispute or labor shortages.
What is winter moratorium and who is protected by this law?
The winter moratorium is a period of time each year from December 1 through March 15 in which individuals who have applied for Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) benefits may not have their heat source disconnected. Although service may not be disconnected during this timeframe, it does not alleviate a customer's responsibility to continue making payment to the utility during this time. The IURC oversees the consistent application of the moratorium but does not oversee the administration of the LIHEAP program.
What is slamming?
Slamming is the switching of your long distance provider without your consent.
What is cramming?
Cramming is the addition of unauthorized charges on your local telephone bill.
How can I find another telephone carrier who provides service in my area?
The IURC has listed the carriers that have been approved to operate in Indiana. You may also look in the front of your telephone book and a listing of alternative providers should be provided.
How can I file comments relating to a pending case before the IURC?
You may submit your comments via our website or you may mail us your comments to the address listed above. You may also submit comments to the Office of Utility Consumer Counselor at 100 N. Senate, Rm. N501, Indianapolis, IN 46204.
Where can I find information about television receivers with analog tuners?
Television receivers with only an analog tuner will require a converter box after February 17, 2009, to receive over-the-air broadcasts with an antenna because of the Nation’s transition to digital broadcasting. Analog-only TVs should continue to work as before with cable and satellite TV services, gaming consoles, VCRs, DVD players, and similar products. For more information, call the Federal Communications Commission at 1-888-225-5322 (TTY: 1-888-835-5322) or visit the Commission’s digital television website at: http://www.dtv.gov/