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    • Is the acknowledgment of service that they have 14 days?
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British Gas - driving me mad** (Concluded) **

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I would be VERY grateful if anyone can help me to get this ncompany to actual address my complaints.

I am very unwell at the moment (putting it mildly) and this business is just making me scream with frustation.



Here we go:


In November 2015 I moved to my new home.

On searching online, British gas offered the best dual fuel package at the time (Collective fix November 2016) which I signed up for with payment by direct debit.



I supplied them with the meter readings that we took the moment we opened the door to the property and by pure luck, the meter reader from Eon knocked on the door literally moments after we got inside, so we had him check the meter readings too as it was at that point supplied by Eon.


In December we had and paid the final bill to Eon.


The meters are both smart meters which happen to have been supplied by British Gas and thus British Gas could get the readings at any time they wanted.


We received a first bill in February that had the wrong readings.

I rang them and they apologized, taking the same correct readings I had given them in November and said they would send another bill. They duly did and it was wrong again.



Same process and they sent a third which was wrong yet again.

They kept using the gas reading for the electricity and vice versa.

They finally got it right on the forth bill in April and compensated me by £100.


From April (when they finally got the readings correct) to October they took not a single payment at all.

They did not send me any bill by post, email or on the online account which I checked regularly.


In September I noted the readings and the accumilated costs online, at which point it said next bill due in October.

I waited for October and on 6th I looked again to see the bill was due on January 4th 2017!

This would have been a year after the last bill and 2 months after the contract expired.

I am one of those people that WILL shop around for the best deal each year.


Noting what the accumilated balance was I paid there and then by card online and I rang BG to complain about the lack of billing.


They then generated a bill on 7 October (the day after I paid and complained).

I had by now started looking for my next supplier and as I had just paid and would be leaving BG by 30 November chose not to pay a one day bill but to allow that to accumilate to the final bill.


I raised a written complaint with British Gas asking them why they had not builled me or taken any payments since February.

In their first reply a week later I was told that they did bill me on 7 October.

You get the picture and where this is heading.


Long and short is that their complaint handler has so far taken an everage of 9 days to reply and when he does it is always a generic reply telling me he will contact me by (date) and then repeats that a week or so later again and again.


Meantime I received an email form a company I had never heard of asking me to complete a survey about British Gas.

I did not, but contacted British Gas to raise a further complaint about them passing my private details to a thrid party without my permission.


In a nutshell, British Gas has failed to address ANY of my complaints and have today sent me a stroppy demand for their final bill in which they threaten to add £18 if they choose to pass the buill to debt collectors.



I feel that until they address my complaints I should not pay anything.

The bill does not adjust for direct debit rates, so is incorect as was the amount I paid already in October.


Can someone please help me with this.

It is a matter of principal that they have not provided the service they were contracted to do when I signed up and have also breached the Data Protect Act as far as I am concerned.

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I'm having a little difficulty untangling the story. Although I understand the sequence of events, I don't eventually understand the state of play as it is now – meaning who owes who and how much.

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Sorry for the confusion.


Original February 2016 bill paid once BG credited the account with £100 compensation. All owed between then and 6 October paid on 6 October by me without demand or bill simply based on what was shown as the running balance online, so zero balance at that point. New bill created following day (immediately after I complained) for £10 not paid as I intended to pay whatever was owed on leaving BG in November. BG calculate that bill (including that £10 bill) to £93.56 and that is what is outstanding according to them.


Problem is that the contract was set up for direct debit payment (as that is cheaper for them and easier for the consumer) and with their own smart meters this made sense. BUT they never took a single payment nor billed me until I paid them on 6 October and complained. The final bill is wrong as it was calculated for someone who pays on demand by cash/cheque rather than the cheaper direct debit rate. It also does not allow for any compensation they may offer for the mess they created.


The fact that I have had no actual explanation or apology from BG, just a series of generic emails every week or so in which I am told they will respond by XYZ date, then another on that date means that BG have not yet addressed my original complaints at all. Including handing my private details to a thrid party.

Edited by GordonBenefit
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Here is an interesting development. I am just looking at the original bill from February, that was updated several times before they finally got it right (as far as original readings are concerned). On the first page, on the right, it tells me that I could save £29.92 on gas and £29.42 on electricity if I switch to Collective Fix November 2016.


Problem is that I was on that exact tarrif! It does stress that payments would need to be by direct debit, and here we are again back at the direct debit scenario. But proof that I have paid more than I should because they did not take payment by direct debit even though it was set up with the bank.

Edited by GordonBenefit
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After a lengthy call with British Gas, armed with the above newly mentioned overcharging information etc, they have written off the bill.


Lesson for anyone else: Just because they are big and will TELL you they are right, if you are right - never back down.


Case closed.

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