Around 160,000 energy customers face uncertainty after GB Energy Supply shut down this week.
The energy watchdog Ofgem reassured GB Energy's former customers that they will find a new supplier that will "best protect" their interests.
In the meantime, if you are a customer of GB Energy, these are the most important points you need to know:
- Your supply won't be cut off
Ofgem will move you to a new supplier. Your energy supply won’t even be disrupted.
- Take a meter reading as soon as possible
Keep it safe, but do nothing. Wait to hear from Ofgem about your new supplier, which Ofgem will choose for you.
- Your tariff will change
Your former tariff will end and you will be set up on a special ‘deemed’ contract (this means a contract you haven’t chosen) with your new supplier. This contract will last for as long as you want it to.
- Your bills may go up
Ofgem have advised that it's "likely" your bills will go up as 'deemed' contracts are more expensive.
Ofgem's advice is not to switch immediately even if you are alarmed by the higher bills. The watchdog says you should wait until your new supplier has got in touch with you to discuss your options.
- You can change the supplier Ofgem give you
Once you have been contacted by your new supplier, you can ask them to put you on their cheapest deal. Alternatively, shop around for a cheaper supplier.
You won’t be charged exit fees if you decide to go with a different supplier to the one Ofgem have chosen for you.
- Your credit will transfer with you
Your new supplier will contact you explaining how your credit with GB Energy will be worked out with them. For example, the new supplier may automatically credit money to your new account with them.
- You may still owe GB Energy
Your credit will transfer with you and so may any debt you have. You won't have to pay your new supplier any money you owed to GB Energy, but you may have to pay back your old supplier.
Martin Lewis, from MoneySavingExpert.com, told ITV News that GB Energy were probably just "the first small company to go bust this winter, not the last."
Rachel Fletcher, Ofgem's senior partner for consumers and competition, said: "If you are a customer of GB Energy Supply there is no need to worry as we will ensure your energy supplies are safe.
"Ofgem are actively working with the industry to ensure your transition to a new supplier is as smooth as possible. While this process is under way our advice is not to do anything as you can continue to rely on your energy supply as normal."