What to do if my electricity was shutoff because of someone else’s past due account?

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What to do if my electricity was shutoff because of someone else’s past due account?

I moved into my place of residence 10 months ago. When establishing service, I received my first bill and it was for over $1,000. I had immediately called to inquire about this and they stated that a previous bill had followed me. I had never had electricity in my name before. They then informed me that since I had “benefited from the use of electricity” at another residence and that person didn’t pay their bill, it was legal for them to bill it to me. I disputed this. Now, they’ve placed the amount back on my account and shutoff my electricity demanding I pay that balance?

Asked on June 9, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Missouri

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If you have had your electricity turned off by your local power company due to a past due bill of a former tenant, such is not right under the law.

You have the following options:

1. contact your landlord and demand that he pay for the past due electrical bill of his/her former tenant in that your ability to enjoy what you have agreed to rent has been compromised;

2. contact your state's public utility commission and make a complaint against the utility company that shut off your power;

3. retain a landlord tenant atttorney to represent you in the above dispute.


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