Or. Admin. R. 860-038-0420 - Electricity Service Supplier Consumer Protection
(1) All advertising and marketing activities by electricity service suppliers must be truthful, not misleading, and in compliance with Oregon's Unfair Trade Practices Act (ORS 646.605 through 646.656).
(2) No person or entity may offer to sell electricity services available pursuant to direct access unless it has been certified by the Commission as an ESS.
(3) Sections (3) through (6) of this rule do not apply when a consumer is changing suppliers. Sections (3) through (6) apply when an ESS is discontinuing service to a consumer. An ESS must give its customers at least 10 business days written notice, as prescribed in section (5) of this rule, before the ESS may discontinue service.
(4) The written notice of intent to discontinue service to the ESS customer must be printed in boldface type and must state in easy to understand language:
(a) The name and contact information of the ESS and the service location intended to be discontinued;
(b) The reasons for the proposed discontinuance;
(c) The earliest date for discontinuance; and
(d) The amount necessary to be paid to avoid discontinuance of services, if applicable.
(5) The ESS must serve the notice of discontinuance in person or send it by first class mail to the last known address of the ESS customer. Service is complete on the date of personal delivery or, if service is by U. S. mail, on the day after the U. S. Postal Service postmark or the day after the date of postage metering.
(6) Not less than 10 business days prior to discontinuance of service to an ESS customer, the ESS must notify the serving electric company, by mutually acceptable means, that the ESS will no longer be supplying energy to that ESS customer. If an ESS and a consumer waive the 10-day notice, pursuant to section (8) of this rule, the ESS must still notify the electric company of its intent to discontinue a consumer's service as soon as it notifies the consumer that service is to be discontinued. The written notice must contain the following:
(a) Name and contact information of the ESS that is discontinuing service, the consumer's name, account number, service location and, if applicable, the electric company's unique location identifier;
(b) Earliest date for discontinuance; and
(c) Necessary information applicable to the transfer of the consumer's service.
(7) This section of this rule applies to any alleged violation of the rules in Division 038 applicable to electricity service suppliers.
(a) When a dispute occurs between an ESS customer and an ESS about any charge or service, the ESS must acknowledge the dispute with a response to the customer within 5 calendar days. The ESS must thoroughly investigate the matter and report the results of its investigation to the ESS customer within 15 calendar days. If the ESS is unable to resolve the matter within 15 calendar days, the ESS must advise the customer of the option to request internal supervisory review of unregulated disputes and to request the Commission's assistance in resolving a dispute within the Commission's jurisdiction;
(b) An ESS customer may request the Commission's assistance in resolving a dispute within the Commission's jurisdiction by contacting the Commission's Consumer Services Division. The Commission must notify the electricity service supplier upon receipt of such a request;
(c) The Commission's Consumer Services Division will assist the complainant and the electricity service supplier in an effort to reach an informal resolution of the dispute. The ESS must provide the Commission with the necessary information to assist in resolving the dispute. The ESS must answer the registered ESS dispute within 15 calendar days of service of the complaint;
(d) If a registered ESS dispute cannot be resolved informally, the Commission's Consumer Services Division will advise the complainant of the right to file a formal written complaint.
(A) The formal written complaint must state the facts of the dispute and the relief requested and must be filed with the Filing Center in compliance with the rules regarding confidential information and filing set out in OAR 860-001-0070, 860-001-0140 through 860-001-0150,and 860-001-0170.
(B) The formal complaint must be filed with the Filing Center at PUC.FilingCenter@state.or.us. If complainant does not have access to electronic mail, the complaint may be mailed, faxed, or delivered to the Filing Center at the address set out in OAR 860-001-0140, and the formal complaint must include a request for waiver of the electronic filing and service requirements.
(C) The Commission will serve the complaint on the ESS. The Commission may electronically serve the ESS with the complaint if the electronic mail address is verified prior to service of the complaint and the delivery receipt is maintained in the official file.
(D) The ESS must answer the complaint within 15 calendar days of service of the complaint by the Commission.
(E) The Commission will set the matter for expedited hearing. A hearing may be held on less than 10 calendar days' notice when good cause is shown. Notice of the hearing will be provided to the complainant and the ESS at least 12 hours before the date and time of the hearing.
(F) Filing dates for formal complaint proceedings are calculated and enforced per OAR 860-001-0150.
(8) Within the terms of a written contract, a customer and an ESS may agree to arrangements other than those specified in sections (3), (4), (5), and (6) of this rule, if the following requirements are met:
(a) The contract must include an exact copy of the paragraphs in subsection (8)(b) of this rule. The paragraphs must be in bold type of at least 12-font size. Immediately following the paragraphs, there must be a line for the consumer's signature and the date.
(b) The agreement must contain the following notice: IF YOU SIGN THIS AGREEMENT, YOU MAY GIVE UP CERTAIN RIGHTS YOU HAVE UNDER OAR 860-038-0420(3) through (6). These rules state: The ESS must insert the complete text of OAR 860-038-0420(3) through (6). THIS MAY AFFECT YOUR ABILITY TO ARRANGE FOR OTHER ENERGY SERVICE.
Stat. Auth.: ORS 183, 756 & 757
Stats. Implemented: ORS 756.040 & 757.600 - 757.667
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