Customers urged to sign up for available assistance and protection programs
BERLIN, Conn. (May 3, 2021) – With Connecticut’s state of emergency in response to the COVID-19 pandemic extended to May 20, Eversource is alerting customers that enrollment in the COVID-19 Payment Program is automatically extended as well. The energy company is encouraging customers to enroll in one of its payment plans or assistance programs if they need help with their energy bill. Both residential and non-residential customers are eligible for payment arrangements at this time and are encouraged to call the energy company at 800-286-2828 to learn more. Any residential customers experiencing difficulty paying their utility bill should contact Eversource for guidance on special financial assistance programs and protections that may be available to them. Any customers ineligible for financial assistance programs, including both residential and non-residential customers, are eligible for the COVID-19 Payment Program.
“Since the state of emergency has been extended another month, there is additional time for customers to take advantage of the special COVID-19 payment plan that can help, especially if customers are having a tough time paying their energy bill” said Eversource Vice President of Customer Operations Jess Cain. “We want to help customers during these challenging times and participating in a payment plan not only arranges affordable monthly payments for them, it also protects them from service disconnection once they resume.”
If a customer that has a past due balance of $240 enrolls in the COVID-19 Payment Program plan, they would pay their current bill, plus $10 each month for 24 months until their balance is eliminated. Eversource continues to encourage customers to reach out now, and not wait until the deadline, so a company representative can help them determine which of the flexible payment plans or special programs would be the most helpful to them.
Customers who’ve never needed assistance previously may not realize they qualify for protection from service disconnection and may also be eligible for other programs to reduce past due balances. For example, a household of five with an annual income of ~$84 thousand dollars meets the income-eligibility requirements. Eversource encourages all customers to contact the energy company at the number above or to check their eligibility on the state income-eligibility matrix - and find out if one of the energy company’s programs below could be beneficial to them.
- Enrollment for the COVID-19 Payment Program for non-residential and residential customers is open until May 20, 2021.
COVID-19 Payment Plan:
- Available to any customer, residential and business, requesting financial assistance, without demonstrating financial need;
- Requires no initial down payment;
- Can be up to 24 months;
- Any late payment fees or interest is waived in the calculation of the monthly payment amount;
- Any customer enrolled in a COVID-19 Payment Program who is current with their payment terms cannot be disconnected even once service disconnections resume.
New Start Program:
- Customers can reduce or eliminate their outstanding balance in as little as 12 months when they make on-time monthly payments and Eversource will make up the difference.
Matching Payment Program:
- Customers who heat their home with electricity or natural gas can get help paying their energy bill. Customers apply for the Connecticut Energy Assistance Program (CEAP) and set up an affordable monthly payment arrangement with Eversource. Customers receiving certain government benefits are eligible for payments as low as $50 per month. For every dollar a customer pays toward their bill by the agreed-upon time each month, a dollar will be credited to their past-due amount, down to a zero balance.
- Payment assistance to qualified households that are financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and is specifically designed to help tenants who have fallen behind with rent and utility bills to stay in their homes.
- Provides eligible renters up to $1,500 to help with past due electric expenses and up to $10,000 for past or future rent expenses.
Eversource reminds customers to take advantage of its #1-ranked energy efficiency solutions to help reduce their energy costs. There are many energy efficiency options available to customers, including the Home Energy Solutions home energy improvement service as well as generous energy efficiency rebates and incentives. The energy company is also making it possible for customers to monitor their energy use with the Kill A Watt electricity usage meter which shows how much power is being used by most home devices. The Kill A Watt kits are available for borrowing from nearly 200 libraries around the state. A list of participating libraries can be found at Eversource.com, here.