Ofgem has fined npower £26m following the supplier’s billing and complaint handling failings after npower introduced a new IT system in 2011. As a result npower issued over half a million late bills in a 15-month period with problems continuing well into 2014. The fine will be divided between the worst affected customers and charities.
Ofgem has also set targets for npower to further improve its complaints handling and billing. Failure to meet these targets would mean npower would be prevented from proactive sales activity and advertising.
Customers do not need to do anything. npower will contact those worst affected.
Dermot Nolan, Ofgem chief executive said: “npower failed its customers. Not only have its billing and complaint handling procedures been chaotic, it treated many of its customers poorly, which is completely unacceptable. npower’s management failed to act quickly enough to protect its customers when things went wrong with changes to its IT system.
“It’s important that all suppliers ensure they follow the principles of treating customers fairly at all times. The payment of £26m sends a strong message to the industry that we expect them to act quickly and effectively to ensure a good customer experience.”