Consumer choice and rights
The Energy Made Easy website is an Australian Government tool created by the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) to help energy consumers to:
- compare electricity and gas offers
- understand energy offers, their energy bill and solve problems
- reduce their energy bills
- learn about energy consumer rights.
This site is relevant for energy consumers in Queensland, New South Wales, South Australia and the Australian Capital Territory. Victorian consumers can access the Victorian Energy Compare site.
Difficulty in paying energy bills
Residential or small customers who are experiencing difficulties in paying their energy bills can ask their electricity or gas retailer about the customer hardship measures that they have in place. These are designed to assist customers to manage their energy bills on an ongoing basis.
Alternatively, more general information about energy supply and consumer protections can be found on the Australian Energy Regulator website.
Customers can also contact their energy ombudsman.
Customer issues with suppliers or complaints
If energy consumers have an issue about energy billing or supply, or have a complaint about their retailer or distributor:
- they must first try to resolve the issue with their service provider directly.
- if they have approached their service provider about their issue and feel that it has not been satisfactorily resolved, they can contact their jurisdictional energy ombudsman and register a formal complaint.
If customers are not sure what option to take, or have other concerns or questions, they can contact their energy ombudsman to discuss.
Most jurisdictions have an energy ombudsman whose role is to receive, investigate and facilitate the resolution of customer complaints about electricity or gas companies operating in their jurisdiction (in many jurisdictions they will also look into complaints about water companies).
The services provided to consumers are free of charge.