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Posted: 27/03/19

Ofwat stepping in to protect customers of Aquaflow Utilities Limited

Ofwat has been informed by Aquaflow Utilities Limited that it is likely to enter into liquidation as of midnight on 9 April 2019. We are now stepping in to use our powers under the Interim Supply Code to ensure customers have a new water retailer as soon as possible.

We wish to reassure non-household customers that the provision of water and wastewater services to your premises will not be affected.

Customers do not need to take any action, there are procedures in place to ensure affected customers are allocated a new retailer.

Of course, it is always difficult to see a company fail, but this is the market in action. Not all retailers will thrive and it is possible that, in the future, others will leave the market too.

We would expect to see companies both enter and exit a competitive market, indeed, there are around 26 retailers in the market offering customers a good range of choice, and other retailers are looking at entering too.

As the market structures evolve, we will continue to make sure that customers are protected and benefit from competition.

Frequently asked questions:

Will my supply be cut off?

No. We’ll move you to a new retailer. Your water supply or wastewater service won’t be cut off or disrupted. You won’t notice any change to your supply.

Who will choose my new retailer?

Ofwat are working with the Market Operator – MOSL to make sure all customers are allocated to a new retailer. Once that has happened, the new retailer will be in touch with you to confirm the details. Of course, if you would like to switch retailer – you can.

When will I know who the new retailer is and the date I’ll be switched to them?

We’ll work as quickly as we can to complete your move to a new retailer. The new retailer will then be in touch with you.

Should I switch retailer now?

The choice is yours, but it may be better to wait until your new retailer has got in touch with you. They can then tell you what to do about any credit balances you might have had with Aquaflow. Once you have been contacted by your new retailer you should then ask them to put you on their best deal or shop around for a best deal for you. See the find a retailer page for further details.

I’m already in the process of switching retailer and it’s not yet complete. Will my switch go through and is my credit balance protected?

You don’t need to worry. If it’s already in process, you will continue to be moved to the new retailer you have chosen. You don’t need to do anything.

I’m in credit to Aquaflow. Will I get this money back?

The liquidator will gather all of Aquaflow’s assets and will share out what is left after deducting the costs of the liquidation between all the people who are owed money (including customers and suppliers) in proportion to what they are owed. It could be sometime before you know how much, if anything, you are likely to receive and when you may receive it.

I’m paying back debt to Aquaflow. Will I still pay this to my new retailer?

No, you will still owe it to Aquaflow. You should only pay the new retailer if the liquidator of Aquaflow tells you in writing that your debt has been transferred and that you should pay the new retailer.

I recently closed my account. Will I get back the credit I’m owed?

The liquidator will gather all of Aquaflow’s assets and will share out what is left after deducting the costs of the liquidation between all the people who are owed money (including customers and suppliers) in proportion to what they are owed. In could be sometime before you know how much, if anything, you are likely to receive and when you may receive it.

I’m in credit to Aquaflow for a pre-payment but I may owe money for supplies I have received. Do I still have to pay this?

You should be able to set any credit due to you from Aquaflow against any money you owe, and only pay the balance, if any. If you credit is greater than what you owe, you may not have to pay anything, but as explained above you may not get back all or part of the balance due to you.

How are decisions made?

When a retailer falls Ofwat issues a notice to the company to understand the area(s) and number of locations affected. Ofwat then starts an allocation process to move SPIDs to the most sensible alternative water retailer. The new retailer then contacts customers to make them aware of the new set-up.

I have been switched to the retailer I previously left – do I have any choice?

The process means that customers are automatically allocated a different retailer. Once you have been contacted by your new retailer you should then ask them to put you on their best deal or shop around for a best deal for you.

Further help and advice

If your question isn’t answered here and you have concerns about your water supply, problems or complaints, you should contact your retailer or the Consumer Council for Water at www.ccwater.org.uk

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