Terms & conditions - energy supply
Welcome to KCE
This agreement sets out the standard terms for the supply of energy and provision of other services by KCE to you. This agreement is effective from 26 March 2013 and unless we have agreed and executed a non-standard agreement with you they replace any previous standard terms on which we supplied energy to you.
The agreement describes our commitment to provide you with a safe and reliable energy supply. It also commits us to provide you with a professional and efficient service delivered in a fair and caring way. It also sets out the responsibilities you have in return.
This agreement also sets out the requirements of your local network owner where they do not have a direct agreement with you.
You will also find important information on other services you may need.
When this agreement starts
By remaining or becoming a KCE customer after the effective date of this agreement you agree to be bound by the terms and conditions of this agreement. You will only be liable for charges from the date the agreement commences or your occupancy or tenancy of the premises (unless another date has been agreed). If we are not supplying you with energy at the commencement of the agreement we will endeavour to commence supply as soon as it is possible.
You have the rights, obligations and responsibilities set out in this agreement which include paying us for the services that we provide you. You will be taken to have understood and agreed to be bound by this agreement either by registering with us over the phone, by registering in person, or by using the energy we supply to you and subsequently agreeing by word or conduct with this agreement.
For a residential supply, more than one person may wish to be named as our customer. You may, for instance, be a couple or a group of flatmates. In this case, each person who is named on the account has all of the rights, obligations and responsibilities set out in this agreement.
The supply of energy under this agreement is not available to other energy retailers.
If you are uncertain about any of the terms and conditions in this agreement, or you have a question, please contact us on 0800 523 637.
Our Commitment to You
We are committed to providing you with a safe and reliable energy supply, however, we cannot guarantee a continuous or fault free energy supply or that the voltage or frequency of electricity supplied to you will not fluctuate. KCE will supply electricity:
· in a manner consistent with all legal obligations and regulations relating to the supply of electricity;
· in accordance with good industry practice; and
· in accordance with any relevant industry protocols and codes.
Planned interruptions to energy supply
Planned interruptions to the supply of energy may be necessary:
· for maintaining the electrical equipment associated with the energy supply to your property;
· to ensure the quality and safety of the energy supply to you;
· to comply with the law, other relevant codes and regulations and agreements that we have with the network owner.
Where an interruption to your energy supply is foreseeable and can be planned in advance you will be provided with written notice by us or the network owner a minimum of four working days prior to when your energy will be turned off. In some circumstances, however, urgent maintenance may be required which was not reasonably foreseeable. Where this occurs, and four working days prior written notice is not possible, we or the network owner will take all practicable measures to contact you by phone or email to give you as much notice as possible about the shutdown. Your energy supply will be restored as soon as reasonably practical after a planned shutdown. You can call us at any time on 0800 523 637 for information in relation to any planned interruptions at your property.
Unplanned interruptions to Energy Supply
Circumstances beyond our control may cause the energy supply to be interrupted. On occasions, unplanned interruptions to your energy supply may occur due to accidents, emergencies, earthquakes, fires, weather conditions, volcanic activity or difficulties associated with the transmission, generation, or production of energy.
Any unplanned interruptions (”faults”) caused by failure or damage to the network that supplies you are attended to and repaired by the network owner.
If you have a direct contract with the network owner in your supply area that provides for a fault restoration service please report any fault at your property, or anything you notice or hear that may help pinpoint the cause of a fault, to them directly. Any information requests such as updates as to supply restoration status should also be referred to them.
In other network areas, where you do not have a direct agreement with the network owner, we will have an agreement with that network owner to provide that service. In these circumstances KCE will provide you with a 24 hour, seven day per week, fault reporting service. Please phone 0800 523 637 to report any fault or unsafe energy supply situation at your property. We will regularly procure updates in accordance with good industry practice on a faults status from the network owner. Please call us on 0800 523 637 if you require an update on a faults status.
We will of course arrange for the restoration of your energy supply as soon as reasonably practicable following any unplanned interruption.
We may also restrict or ration your energy supply if abnormal physical or economic supply conditions exist. This may include for example but without limitation, where there are local or national energy shortages or capacity constraints, instances of extreme wholesale energy prices, or where rationing is required as part of an energy industry rationing plan. We will notify you in the most practicable manner if this is to occur and will further notify you as soon as we are able when normal service is to resume.
If KCE receives compensation from a third party for losses relating from the interruption of supply to your property, KCE will notify you and credit an appropriate portion of that compensation to your account. If requested by you we will provide an explanation of how the amount passed on was determined.
The network owner may have to interrupt your energy supply to ensure the safety and integrity of its network, or if required by a contract relating to the connection of that network to the national transmission system.
If your property has load control equipment installed which allows the remote control of the energy supply to some of your equipment (such as water heating or storage heating), and you are on an interruptible load pricing plan, the energy supply to that equipment may, without notice, be temporarily interrupted.
Fluctuations in the voltage or frequency of Electricity
Some electrical equipment (generally electronic appliances such as computers, cordless phones, microwaves, stereos and digital recorders) are sensitive to, and may be damaged by, fluctuations in the voltage or frequency of electricity that sometimes occur on an electricity network. It is your responsibility to ensure that sensitive electrical equipment is adequately protected when using the electricity we provide. We recommend that you take out insurance cover for these risks.
Fluctuations in the voltage or frequency of electricity can occur when:
· customers use electrical equipment with powerful motors
· customers use appliances with a high electrical load;
· lightning strikes electrical lines or transformers;
· electrical lines are broken or cut;
· accidents, such as for example, when a car hits a power pole;
· trees interfere with electrical lines.
There are devices available that can protect sensitive electrical equipment. Please contact your electrician or an electrical equipment store for assistance.
KCE have a range of pricing plans to suit many different lifestyles or businesses. Please contact us for advice on the best pricing plan for you. You may change your pricing plan with us at any time (subject to qualifying for that alternative plan). If there are no metering or other practical restrictions we will change your pricing plan within 5 working days. If you request a change to be made to your pricing plan this may incur a service fee. Our service fees are available on our website or by phoning us on 0800 523 637.
We will comply with the code and other appropriate regulations in respect to vulnerable and medically dependent customers. You are a vulnerable customer if you are a domestic customer and if for reasons of age, health or disability, the disconnection of energy to you presents a clear threat to your health or wellbeing, and/or it is genuinely difficult for you to pay your energy accounts because of severe financial insecurity, whether temporary or permanent. You can inform us at any time if you are or become a vulnerable customer.
You are a medically dependent customer if you are a domestic customer and you depend on mains energy for critical medical support, such that loss of energy may result in loss of life or serious harm. Examples of this would be where an oxygen or dialysis machine is used within the home. We require written confirmation from a doctor or District Health Board (or equivalent) that this equipment is housed within your premises to confirm your critical medical status.
You can inform us at any time if you are or become a medically dependent customer.
If for any reason we form the honest belief that you are a vulnerable or medically dependent customer you authorise us to consult with appropriate government authorities or agencies, private health providers or any other social agency or service provider as necessary. If, after we have informed you of the opportunity to notify us that you are a vulnerable or medically dependent customer, you have not told us, or it does not appear to us, that you are a vulnerable or medically dependent customer, we will assume that you are not a vulnerable or medically dependent customer.
RESPONSIBILITIES FOR ENERGY LINES AND EQUIPMENT
Network Owner’s Responsibilities
The network owner is responsible for operating and maintaining:
· its distribution network up to the point of connection to your property, which is usually the fuse on the power pole or underground service pillar nearest your property boundary;
· it's equipment on your property.
Energy Equipment we are responsible for maintaining
If a meter, and/or load control equipment that we can use, is not already installed on your property, we will procure and be responsible for installing and maintaining this equipment. This equipment will be used to record the use of energy at your property and, where an interruptible plan has been chosen, control the supply of energy (for example controlled supply of water heating). We may also choose to replace any existing meter and/or load control equipment on your property with our own meter and/or load control equipment. If we do not own the removed equipment, you will be responsible for ensuring that it is returned to its rightful owner.
In certain circumstances we may charge you for the installation of a meter and/or load control equipment. If any charges apply, we will advise you what they will be and gain your consent before carrying out any work.
Any metering we supply or procure that is used at your property will comply with the relevant codes and regulations.
Energy lines and equipment you are responsible for maintaining
You, or the property owner, own and are responsible for the electricity line from the point of connection to the meter and all other wiring and energy equipment and appliances on your property.
Your electricity point of connection is usually the fuse on the power pole or underground service pillar nearest your property boundary. If you are not sure where you point of connection is please contact the network owner who will be able to clarify it for you. We are also able to provide you with information to help you determine this – please call us on 0800 523 637 and we will assist.
We, or you, may request that the accuracy of any meter on your property be tested if we, or you, consider that it is not recording usage accurately. If the test shows that the meter does not comply with the accuracy standard required by the relevant codes and regulation then the meter owner will pay the cost of the test and replace or repair the meter. If the meter does comply with the relevant accuracy standard and you requested that it be tested you may be required to pay the cost of the test. We will advise you of the costs you may incur before any tests are performed. The process for testing and replacing meters will be in accordance with applicable codes and regulation.
Trees and power lines
Trees and shelterbelts can interfere with power lines. When trees touch power lines they cause short-circuiting. This can lead to unnecessary energy supply interruptions as well as energy spikes or surges. You have obligations in relation to trees under the Electricity (Hazards from Trees) Regulations 2003 as those regulations may be amended or substituted from time to time. The purpose of these regulations is to protect the security of the supply of energy, and the safety of the public, by:
• prescribing distances from overhead electricity lines within which trees must not encroach; and
• setting rules about who has responsibility for cutting or trimming trees that encroach on overhead electricity lines; and
• assigning liability if those rules are breached; and
• providing an arbitration system to resolve disputes between line owners and tree owners about the operation of the regulations, specify the distances trees and other vegetation must be kept from power lines.
If a network owner becomes aware of trees or vegetation growing closer than they should to power lines they may issue you with a Hazard Warning Notice to let you know that the tree or vegetation must not be allowed to grow further such that they may interfere with the power lines. If vegetation grows within the minimum clearances cutting or trimming will be necessary. If you do not comply with these regulations, you will be liable for the costs of carrying out such work arising as a result of your non-compliance and may also be liable for fines.
Please note that this is a basic outline of the requirements and you can get more specific information on these regulations from Energy Safety which is a part of the Ministry of Economic Development. Alternatively you can call us on 0800 523 637 and we will assist you with where you can find more specific information.
If trees you are responsible for are regularly trimmed it will usually not require an energy shutdown and charges for this and the removal or trimming of trees can be avoided. If any of your trees are near power lines and need to be trimmed, for your safety, please get professional assistance.
Your responsibilities for Energy Lines and Equipment
For your own safety, and so that energy supply to you and our other customers is not interrupted;
· follow the network owner’s directions to ensure the safety of its energy lines or equipment on your property;
· provide and maintain, at no cost to the network owner or us, suitable space for the safe and secure housing of the network owner’s and our equipment as deemed necessary by the network owner or us to be housed at your premises and you agree to protect such equipment against interference and damage;
· inform us of any damage or destruction to the network owner’s or our equipment;
· comply with the network owner’s distribution code (a copy of which will be available from your network owner);
· repair and maintain your energy lines and equipment and ensure they comply with all legislative requirements;
· maintain the proper clearances between your electrical lines and the buildings, ground, trees and vegetation on your property as set out in codes and regulations;
· ensure trees, other vegetation and obstacles on your property are kept clear of any meter or other energy equipment provided by us or the network owner;
· make sure nothing on your property interferes with or damages the network;
· determine the location of any underground energy line or pipe before undertaking any work on your property such as digging trenches and driving stakes;
· make sure everyone you are responsible for or your representatives also meets these requirements;
· obtain the consent of any other person needed for you to meet these requirements;
· ensure the property owner is aware of any circumstances that may require the property owner to meet any of these requirements; and
You must never:
· interfere with or work on any of the network owner’s lines pipes or other equipment as only people it authorises may work on them;
· interfere with any metering or any other equipment that records your use of energy at your property;
· disconnect or reconnect your property to the network as only people authorised by the network owner may do this;
· take a supply of energy from any point before the meter that records your consumption of energy;
· interconnect two or more points of connection to the network;
· use any electrical equipment or appliance that interferes with the supply of electricity to any other person or the operation or safety of any other electrical equipment or appliance;
· send or receive any signal or other form of communication over the network.
Any interference with meters or other equipment provided by us or the network owner that supplies energy to your property is considered a material breach of this agreement and may result in the disconnection of your supply. Any persistent but non-material breaches of these responsibilities may also result in disconnection of your supply. Where the breach is non-material we will provide you with notice in writing outlining the breach and we will provide you with a reasonable period to remedy the issue notified before disconnection. If it is found that you have interfered with any metering equipment it could also result in a police investigation and/or back billing of estimated consumption for energy consumed and not previously charged to you.
· that the network, including any part located on your property, is and shall remain the sole property of the network owner. No provision of this agreement in relation to the network confers any right or interest in such property on you;
· to indemnify us for any liability we may have to the network owner for any damage to the network owner’s equipment caused by your (or your representative’s) negligence or wilful act or omission, or failure to provide the protection required by this agreement.
If you are unsure of what the codes and regulations are that you must comply with please contact your electrician or a registered electrical inspector. We can also help – please phone us on 0800 523 637 for assistance.
ACCESS TO YOUR PROPERTY
You will give us, the network owner and our respective representatives’ rights of access for the purpose of:
• installing, upgrading, testing, inspecting, maintaining, repairing, replacing, operating, reading or removing our or the network owner’s equipment (including upon termination of this agreement); and
• verifying metering information; and
• ascertaining and remedying the cause of any interference to the quality of the line function services being provided by the network owner to any person; and
• protecting or preventing danger or damage to persons or property; and
• connecting or disconnecting the supply of energy; and
• any other purpose related to the above.
If we, or the network owner or our respective representatives are unable to obtain rights of access to equipment installed at your property we may upon reasonable notice disconnect your energy supply.
Except in routine situations (such as, for example, reading or inspecting a meter that is located on the outside of a building) or emergencies, before accessing your property, we, the network owner or our respective representatives will provide written notice to you:
• when we or they will be accessing your property; and
• provide the reason why we or they are accessing your property.
The notice will be given:
• at least 10 working days prior to entry if we, the network owner or our respective representatives intends to enter the property to undertake construction, upgrade, repair or maintenance work (or any other time agreed by we, the network owner or our respective representatives and you); or
• within a reasonable timeframe where we, the network owner or our respective representatives intends to inspect or operate any equipment used in, or in connection with, the generation, conversion, transformation or conveyance of energy.
When accessing your property, we, the network owner or our respective representatives will:
• take reasonable steps to minimise any direct impacts on your property and any inconvenience to you; and
• comply with any of your reasonable requirements (such as, for example, the time of entry, leaving gates as found, driving in a safe manner and taking reasonable steps not to disturb stock, and avoiding access through specific areas).
We, the network owner or our respective representatives, when accessing your property, will:
• carry identification that shows they are authorised representatives of us, the network owner or our respective representatives and present this identification on request; and
• identify themselves to you before entering your property; and
• act courteously, considerately, and professionally at all times.
Our procedures for ensuring the secure storage, use of and return of any keys and/or other security information that we have for your premises that is in our or a third party’s possession are available on request – please call us on 0800 523 637.
The rights of access are in addition to any right of access the network owner may have under statute or regulation.
CHARGES AND PAYMENT
Please call us on 0800 523 637 for advice and an up to date list of energy prices and service fees for your area. If you request a product or service that will involve additional cost to you we will in most cases advise you of that cost at the time. Where it is not possible for us to provide you with the cost at the time of enquiry we will provide an estimate of the cost or arrange to contact you in a reasonable timeframe with that estimate before the product or service is provided. If any circumstances arise, or are likely to arise, where you may be charged a service fee we will give you reasonable notice of those circumstances before the fee is incurred. We will also advise you where it is possible how those service fees can be avoided.
If, for any reason, our energy prices are going to increase and the increase will affect you, we will notify you as soon as possible, and in any event, at least 30 days prior to that change either in writing, by email or by publishing the changes in the local newspaper (provided you are not on a pricing plan that provides for energy price flexibility, meaning that the energy prices relating to the time and volume of energy may increase in a shorter timeframe in accordance with that plan). If our energy price increase will be greater than 5%, or our service fees increase and that increase is reasonably likely to have a material effect on you, we will communicate this to you individually in writing or by email as soon as possible, and in any event, at least 30 days prior to that change. We will also explain the reasons for the increase. We can, however, reduce our energy charges or our service fees at any time.
If our energy prices change during a billing cycle we will pro rate the energy used over the period to determine a daily average usage and then apportion your bill at the different rates.
It may be necessary for us to ask for a bond when you make an application for supply, or for us to continue to supply you with energy, if you have not maintained a satisfactory payment record with us. We will provide you with the reasons why we require a bond.
The bond will:
• depending on the circumstances, be required upon invoice with normal payment terms or before reconnection if you have been disconnected for non-payment of your account;
· conform with the requirements of the code, industry guidelines and any other appropriate regulations;
· for electricity only residential customers not exceed $150;
· If you are a commercial customer be an amount agreed with you;
• not bear interest;
• be repaid to you by cheque or by crediting your account after 12 months if you have kept a satisfactory payment history with us. We may at our discretion repay the bond sooner if regular direct debit payments have been made that meet our reasonable requirements. In some situations if you have not kept a satisfactory payment history with us we may hold your bond longer than 12 months but we will explain the reasons why to you; and
• be transferred to your new account if you move and continue as one of KCE’s customers. If you do not continue as a KCE customer the bond will be credited against your final account and the balance, if any, paid to you by direct credit to your bank account or by cheque if appropriate.
Reading Meters and sending your Invoice
We will read your meter in accordance with the code and any applicable regulations. As long as our rights of access are maintained KCE will endeavour to obtain meter readings at least every two months. Each month, unless otherwise agreed with you, or you are on a prepaid option, we’ll send you an account for payment. This account may be paper based or in electronic form depending on your chosen option. Your account will list the previous month’s transactions as well as the current month’s energy charges and usage (or estimated usage), service fees (if applicable) and charges for other services (if applicable) that we have provided to you. If you are in an area where the network owner does not invoice you directly the account will also include the network owner’s charges that are charged either by the network owner to us, or charged by the network owner to you and included in our account. Our account will also include the identifier numbers of all installation control points that are covered by the account and the name of the network owner who your equipment is connected to.
We will ensure that reasonable skill and care has been applied in compiling the invoice so that the details contained in the invoice are accurate. If your meter is not read for any reason we will estimate the use of energy at your property for the purpose of preparing your monthly invoice. If you would like an explanation as to how estimates are calculated please call us on 0800 523 637 and we will provide that to you. Adjustments will be made in any subsequent invoice to reflect the actual usage once the meter has been read. If you receive an estimated account and would prefer to pay on an actual reading, simply give us a call with your meter reading as soon as possible and we will post or email you an up-to-date account. Alternatively you can send us your reading by visiting our website www.kce.co.nz and filling out the appropriate form. If we become aware of any error on your account we will promptly refund or credit any amount that has been overcharged to you. If you have underpaid because of a meter or meter reading error we may invoice you for that underpayment. The amount we charge will take into account whether we or you contributed to the error, or could reasonably have been expected to know of the error, and in any event we will comply with the code and any applicable regulations.
Paying your Invoice
You must pay each invoice in full by the due date, without deduction or set-off, whether the invoice is based on actual or estimated usage. If more than one person has requested us to supply energy to your property then you will be jointly and severally liable for payment of the invoice. A number of payment options are available. Find out by looking on our website www.kce.co.nz or by phoning us on 0800 523 637 and we can explain them to you. If any currently offered payment options are to change KCE will give you at least 30 days advance notice. The notice will explain why the changes have been made and provide you with information on how the change may affect you. We will also advise of any alternative payment options that are available to you at that time.
If we are unable to provide you with a prepayment meter option, we will provide you with the contact details of other companies that offer that service if there is such a service offering in your location. You may prefer to go on a SmoothPay option with us instead – just give us a call and we will discuss the available options.
If you are not responsible for the lateness of an invoice:
• and the invoice is provided more than two months after the end of the period that it covers you will by arrangement have at least the length of time covered by the invoice to pay it; or
• the invoice is more than three months late we will negotiate an appropriate discount with you.
No interest is payable on incorrect or late invoices.
USE OF PERSONAL INFORMATION WE HOLD
We collect personal information from you to enable us to supply energy and other services to you. This information is principally needed for us to contact you and send you invoices and information about our services. We may also record your calls to us and ours to you. We do this strictly for the purposes of ensuring that we have an accurate record of any conversation you have with us and for quality control.
We will not give your personal information to anyone else unless you authorise us to, we are required to by law or so that we are able to:
· carry out a credit check; or
· carry our responsibilities, or exercise our rights, under the terms of this agreement; or
· advise you of any other services we or any related company offers which we consider may be of interest to you; or
· disclose relevant information to a person involved in recovering money from you, if you have not paid us by the due date; or
· have market research carried out for us by a reputable market research organization.
We may also give your personal information to the network owner to enable the network owner to carry out its responsibilities or exercise its rights in relation to the supply of energy to you. We will hold secure all personal information that you give us or we collect about you. This information will only be accessible by authorised KCE staff. You may have access to your personal information during normal working hours. We will correct any incorrect details that you advise us of. KCE complies with all obligations required by the Privacy Act 1993.
Our Liability to You
If we negligently cause physical damage to your property we will pay the owner the reasonable costs of repairing or replacing (if we consider appropriate) the damaged property up to a maximum of $10,000 for any single even or series of related events. All other liability we may have to you (including loss of profits or business) is excluded to the maximum extent permitted by law. If we are held liable to you and we cannot rely on this exclusion for any reason then the above $10,000 limit will still apply.
The electricity supplied by KCE will comply with the standards required under the Consumer Guarantees Act 1993. Except to the extent that KCE is legally entitled to exclude the provision of the Consumer Guarantees Act, nothing in the contract will limit your rights under that Act. If you acquire goods and services from us for the purpose of a business the Consumer Guarantees Act 1993 does not apply.
Where any loss or damage you suffer arises from any action or inaction of the network owner we will only be liable to you to the extent we have recourse to the network owner.
Your Liability to Us
If we have to take any action to recover from you any amount you owe us or to enforce any of these terms, we may recover from you all associated costs incurred by us (including costs of a solicitor).
Network owner’s liability to you
Network owners have limited or excluded their liability to you and us. Unless provided otherwise in the relevant agreement you or we have with the network owner, all liability the network owner may have to you is excluded to the fullest extent permitted by law. This exclusion of liability is enforceable by the network owner and their representatives pursuant to the Contracts (Privity) Act 1982.
Your liability to the network owner
You may be liable to the network owner for any damage to the network that you cause.
DISCONNECTION AND ENDING YOUR ENERGY SUPPLY
Temporary disconnection at your request
You may wish to have your energy supply disconnected temporarily. Please contact us at least three working days prior to when you require the disconnection and we will ask the network owner to temporarily disconnect your premises. You will have to pay any service fees for disconnection and reconnection that result from this request. Remember, if a supply of electricity is suspended for more than six months a certificate of verification is required by law to ensure the property is electrically safe.
Termination at your request
If you wish to terminate your electricity supply altogether, KCE will cease supply as soon as reasonably practicable following your request for termination. We will arrange for a final invoice to be sent to your nominated address.
Disconnection by the network owner
Our agreement with you is dependent on us having a valid contract with the network owner. In the event that our agreement with the network owner ceases, which results in us being unable to supply you with energy, our agreement with you as to the supply of energy to your property connected to that network will also automatically terminate. In such a case, we or the network owner may disconnect your premises from that network. Termination of this agreement shall not affect the rights of either party that accrued prior to termination.
Switching to another retailer
If you decide to switch to another retailer, they will contact us to arrange the changeover. You will be liable for all energy supplied by us until the new retailer becomes responsible for the supply of energy to you. We will send you a final invoice. If you are switching to another energy supplier, the termination of this agreement will be effected in accordance with all relevant regulations and any accepted industry arrangements, guidelines, protocols and any other standards relating to switching, and we will facilitate the switch.
Disconnection for non-payment
Your invoices must be paid by the due date specified on the invoices. Not to do so is considered a material breach of this agreement. If it appears to us that for some reason you’ve overlooked an invoice and you do not have a history of late payment, we’ll put a friendly reminder either in the post or by email (if you have registered for our email service) to you. If after the friendly reminder you still don’t pay, or if you have a history of late payment, we may start the process to discontinue your supply of energy.
If your invoices (or any undisputed part of them) remain unpaid, we’ll send you a disconnection notice in the post or by email (if you have registered for our email service) to you. We will give you at least seven working days’ notice to make payment. If we send you a disconnection notice you may be charged a service fee. Any disconnection notice that we send you will specify the earliest date that disconnection may occur and that it will occur no later than 7 days from that date. Each disconnection notice will include information about what you need to do to prevent disconnection. We will also provide you with a final warning not less than 24 hours before disconnection. If payment is not received we may disconnect your energy supply after this notice period but will only do so on a working day that is not a Friday or the day before a public holiday.
We will only disconnect your energy supply if the payment owing to us is related to that particular supply of energy or their respective line function services to you.
Your energy supply will not be disconnected for non-payment of an estimated amount unless we reasonably believe that it is fair and reasonable in the circumstances to do so. In some circumstances we may require you to pay a service fee for disconnection.
If you’re having trouble paying, or you think that something is wrong with your invoice, please get in touch with us on 0800 523 637. Don’t let things get worse without letting us know. Our Customer Service Team can assist with payment arrangements and advice. If you do not contact us and don’t pay your invoice your energy supply may be disconnected. If a payment arrangement is made after a disconnection notice has been provided, no further recovery action will be undertaken while the conditions of the arrangement are being met. If however, after a short period of time, you fail to honour that payment arrangement it may result in disconnection of your energy supply upon at least 24 hours’ notice. There may be a service fee for making a payment arrangement.
You will be responsible to pay any costs we incur in collecting your outstanding accounts. These may include, without limitation, costs such as credit agency fees and legal and court costs. These will be added to your account and will be payable by you to us. We may use any bond or advance payment made by you to pay these amounts. We may also charge service fees for the administration of late payments.
Disconnection and termination for material breaches
There are some circumstances where we have a right to terminate this agreement and the supply of energy to you. We will however only exercise this right if you make material or persistent breaches of the terms of this agreement (or if you are disconnected for not paying your account).
If you commit a material breach that is capable of being remedied we will give you reasonable notice of the need to remedy the breach so you can avoid disconnection and/or termination of this agreement.
If you persistently commit non-material breaches of the terms of this agreement we may also terminate our agreement and the supply of energy to you. We will only do so after we have given you reasonable prior notice taking into account the circumstances and the nature of the breaches at the time. This notice period will give you time to make alternative arrangements for energy supply. Non-material breaches can include, for example, but are not limited to, regular non-payment of invoices, persistent abusiveness to our staff, continued vexatious complaints, or the regular failure to grant access to your premises at reasonable times.
Effect of disconnection and termination
If your property has been disconnected for non-payment or for any other material breach of this agreement any obligation we have to supply you with energy ceases. You will remain liable for all outstanding invoices and charges incurred by you up to the time your property was disconnected. You will also, for so long as you continue to occupy the property previously supplied by us, continue to provide us access and protect the network owner’s and our equipment. You must reapply to have the supply of energy by us to you recommenced.
When you want reconnection after we’ve discontinued your supply (or if it has been disconnected due to a safety or emergency issue) – just call us. We will let you know the procedure for reconnection. In some circumstances we may require you to:
• pay all outstanding amounts (except when you have notified us of a genuine dispute);
• pay a bond on your account;
• pay a service fee;
• pay any costs incurred in collecting your outstanding account; and/or
• agree to a payment plan or other conditions as are reasonable in the particular circumstances.
If we have disconnected your supply for non-payment and you subsequently satisfy our reasonable requirements for reconnection, we will restore your energy supply as soon as reasonably practicable.
We may transfer to someone else all or any part of our rights or obligations under these terms. In the event that this may occur, KCE will advise you;
· That the contract is being transferred to another company;
· Where you can access the information you need to contact the transferee company;
· When the transfer will take place.
You cannot transfer your rights or obligations under this agreement to any person without our prior written consent.
If you have a direct agreement for line function services with the network owner the provisions set out in this agreement that relates to your obligations to, and the rights of, the network owner do not apply to you but this will not affect your obligations to us and our rights set out in this agreement. You must comply with the terms of the network owner’s agreement, or in the case of a new connection to the network, the network owner’s terms and conditions for connection. Any complaints related to the services provided to you under a direct agreement with a network owner should be referred to the network owner.
If KCE has or is likely to have a receiver, liquidator, administrator or other similar officer appointed, KCE will take all reasonable steps to ensure that you receive continuity of electricity supply.
If any terms of this agreement are, or become, ruled invalid, it will not affect the remaining terms of the agreement, which will remain in effect.
Unless otherwise set out in this agreement, our accounts or notices to you will be:
• delivered to your property; or
• mailed to the latest postal address you have given us; or
• sent to the latest facsimile number you have given us; or
• sent to the latest e-mail address you have given us; or
• provided through a local newspaper if we consider that this is appropriate, or
• by telephone call in case of urgent requirements.
Notices will be considered to have been received by you three days after being mailed by us or our mailing agent, on the day of delivery if delivered to your property, on the day of transmission if sent by facsimile or email, or on the day of publication if provided through a local newspaper.
Changes to the agreement
We may from time to time change the terms of this agreement. Where minor changes are made to the terms of this agreement that more closely align it with industry model agreements or mandated requirements no notice of the changes will be given. This is only so long as the changes made are beneficial and/or of immaterial consequence to you.
We will tell you about any proposed changes by writing to you or by advertising a summary of the proposed changes in the local newspaper and will provide you with a copy of the proposed changes on request. You will have a reasonable opportunity to give us your suggestions or comments on any proposed changes to the agreement. We will tell you about any changes (including changes to payment options) at least 30 days before they come into effect by writing to you or by advertising the changes in your local newspaper.
Changes to our energy charges and service fees will occur as set out under the heading “Charges and Payment” in this agreement.
QUESTIONS AND COMPLAINTS
If you have a question or complaint, please call our Customer Service Team on 0800 523 637. You can also contact us by post or fax:
PO Box 363
Fax: 07 896 6036
Usually a call to our Customer Service Team is all that is needed to answer any question or resolve any complaint. If we cannot resolve your complaint over the phone in the first instance we will acknowledge your complaint within 2 working days after we receive it. If we can’t resolve your complaint or query straight away, we will respond to you within 7working days of receipt.
In some instances we may ask you to put your complaint in writing to help us resolve your issue. If you are not satisfied with our response, KCE will try to resolve your query or complaint within a further 12 working days.
If your complaint cannot be resolved within 20 working days of original receipt, and KCE has not written to you explaining why we need further time to resolve your complaint, you have the option to refer your complaint to the free and independent Electricity and Gas Complaints Commissioner Scheme. More information about the scheme is below.
If your complaint or query involves your network owner and is more appropriately dealt with by them than us, we will advise you and provide you with their contact details.
KCE is a member of the free and independent Electricity and Gas Complaints Commissioner Scheme and will deal with any complaints you have in relation to your energy supply in accordance with the requirements of the Scheme.
· you are not happy how we propose to resolve your complaint or query; or
· it is clear that KCE is not going to do anything about it; or
· waiting any longer would cause you unreasonable harm; or
· waiting any longer would be unjust; or
· we have not resolved your issue within 20 working days after receiving your complaint, you may refer your complaint to the free and independent Electricity and Gas Complaints Commissioner Scheme to resolve by phone letter or email. Their details are:
o Website: www.egcomplaints.co.nz
o Freephone: 0800 22 33 40
o Freefax: 0800 22 33 47
o Freepost: 192682, P O Box 5875, Lambton Quay, Wellington 6145.
If you have questions about making a complaint, contact the Commissioner’s office.
Note: It is advisable that you keep all letters, bills, notes and photos relevant to your complaint, as KCE or the EGCC may ask to see these.
You must continue to pay any undisputed amounts to the Company while the Commissioner of the EGCC is considering your compliant.
The following terms in this agreement have the meanings:
“code” means the Electricity Industry Participation Code 2010 and the gas industry rules and regulations as may be amended or substituted from time to time;
“distribution code” means the relevant standards (by whatever name called) as may be issued and amended by the network owner from time to time which must be met by your premises for continuing connection to the network, and other related matters;
“energy” means electricity and/or gas;
“good industry practice” means the exercise of that degree of skill, diligence, prudence and foresight which would reasonably and ordinarily be expected from a skilled and experienced person engaged in the same type of undertaking under the same or similar conditions in New Zealand at that time;
“network” means the network owner’s system for the conveyance of energy;
“network owner” for the owner or operator of the network that is connected to your property and its respective employees, contractors or agents;
“point of connection” means the point at which the responsibility for the equipment that supplies energy transfers between the network owner and you;
“property” means any property all or part of which you occupy or on which metering or other equipment is installed;
“regulations” means the Electricity Industry (Enforcement) Regulations 2010, the Gas Act 1992, technical electricity and gas codes of practice, and other relevant regulations, guidelines, protocols, industry standards and codes of practice as may be amended or substituted from time to time;
“rights of access” means:
· safe and unobstructed access to and within your premises;
· reasonable use of facilities and amenities available to you and ordinarily used in association with our or the network owner’s equipment; and
· the right to gain immediate access to your premises for meter reads and disconnection and reconnection services or where we or the network owner reasonably believe there is immediate danger to persons or property.
“service fee” means a charge for services provided such as (but not limited to) account establishment, reconnections, disconnections, disconnection notices, payment dishonours, arrangement fees, lodgement and agency payment arrangements, internal fault call outs, non-registration administration, tariff changes or tariff combining, special or final meter reads, meter tests, and other sundry services provided as determined from time to time by KCE;
“vulnerable customer” means a customer who has told us, or about whom it appears to us, that disconnection of energy at their property presents a clear threat to their health or well-being or of a member of their household, or who has mains powered equipment for critical medical support;
“we”, “our” or “us” for KCE Retail Limited, our employees contractors or agents; and
“you” means you as our customer.