Or. Admin. R. 860-021-0410 - Emergency Medical Certificate for Residential Electric and Gas Service

(1) An energy utility shall not disconnect residential service if the customer submits certification from a qualified medical professional or self-certifies that disconnection would significantly endanger the physical health of the customer or a member of the customer's household. For the purposes of this rule, "Qualified medical professional" means a licensed physician, nurse-practitioner, or physician's assistant authorized to diagnose and treat the medical condition described without direct supervision by a physician.
(2) Any oral certification by a qualified medical professional and any residential customer's initial self certification to the utility must be confirmed in writing within 30 days by a qualified medical professional prescribing medical care. Written Certifications must include:
(a) The name of the person to whom the certificate applies and relationship to the customer;
(b) A complete description of the health conditions;
(c) An explanation of how the person's health will be significantly endangered by terminating the service;
(d) A statement indicating how long the health condition is expected to last;
(e) A statement specifying the particular type of utility service required (for example, electricity for respirator); and
(f) The signature of the qualified medical professional prescribing medical care.
(3) If a medical certificate is not submitted in compliance with sections (1) and (2) of this rule, the energy utility may disconnect service after providing a five-day notice to the customer. The notice shall comply with the requirements of OAR 860-021-0405, except subsection (1)(b), subsection (2)(e), and section (4) of this rule shall not be applicable.
(4) An emergency medical certificate shall be valid only for the length of time the health endangerment is certified to exist, but no longer than six months without renewal for certificates not specifying chronic illnesses and no longer than twelve months for certificates specifying illnesses identified as chronic by a "Qualified Medical Professional" as defined in this rule. At least 15 days before the certificate's expiration date, an energy utility will give the customer written notice of the date the certificate expires unless it is renewed with the utility before that day arrives.
(5) A customer submitting a medical certificate is not excused from paying for electric or gas service:
(a) Customers are required to enter into a written time-payment agreement with the energy utility when an overdue balance exists. Terms of the time-payment agreement shall be those in OAR 860-021-0415 or such other terms as the parties agree upon in writing;
(b) When financial hardship can be shown, a customer with a medical certificate may renegotiate the terms of a time-payment agreement with the energy utility; and
(c) Time-payment arrangements in effect when a medical certificate terminates remain in effect for the balance then owing. If a customer fails to pay charges incurred after the certificate terminates, the provisions of OAR 860-021-0415 (standard time-payment provisions) shall apply to payment of the arrearage incurred after the medical certificate expires. The terms of the medical certificate time-payment plan continue to apply to the arrearage accrued during the disability.
(6) If a medical certificate customer fails to enter into a written time-payment agreement within 20 days of filing the certificate, or to abide by its terms, the energy utility shall notify the Commission's Consumer Services Division of its intent to disconnect service and the reason for the disconnection. The energy utility may disconnect service after providing a notice 20 days in advance of disconnection for nonpayment, or five days before disconnection for failure to enter into a written time-payment agreement. The notice shall comply with the requirements of OAR 860-021-0405, except paragraph (2)(d)(C) shall not be applicable. A hearing may thereafter be held to determine whether the energy utility should be permitted to disconnect service to the customer.
(7) An energy utility may verify the accuracy of a medical certificate. If the energy utility believes a customer does not qualify, or no longer qualifies for a medical certificate, the utility may apply to the Commission to terminate the service of the customer.


Or. Admin. R. 860-021-0410
PUC 6-1979, f. & ef. 10-6-79 (Order No. 79-680); PUC 5-1983, f. 5-31-83, ef. 6-1-83 (Order No. 83-284); Renumbered from 860-021-0095; PUC 12-1983, f. & ef. 10-7-83 (Order No. 83-623); PUC 3-1989, f. 2-6-89, cert. ef. 2-8-89 (Order No. 89-038); PUC 16-1990, f. 9-28-90, cert. ef. 10-1-90 (Order No. 90-1105); PUC 11-1995, f. & cert. ef. 11-27-95 (Order No. 95-1217); PUC 11-1998, f. & cert. ef. 5-7-98; PUC 16-2001, f. & cert. ef. 6-21-01; PUC 7-2005, f. & cert. ef. 11-30-05; PUC 10-2022, amend filed 09/30/2022, effective 9/30/2022

Statutory/Other Authority: ORS 183, ORS 756, ORS 757 & OL 1987, Ch. 290

Statutes/Other Implemented: ORS 756.040, ORS 757.750, ORS 757.755 & ORS 757.760

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