This web page lets you know your rights as an electric customer and includes common questions and concerns. If you have a question or problem with your service, first contact us. If we cannot solve the problem, call the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin (PSC), at (608) 266-2001 or 1-800-255-7729.
Moving? Before you buy a home or rent an apartment, call us. We can tell you how much energy was used at the new address during the last 12 months. Or, we can tell you the largest and smallest bills for the last 12 months.
You may be asked to show identification (I.D.)
Before you open an account, we can ask you to show I.D. Some types of ID include:
- Photo I.D. card
- Driver's license
- U.S. military card
- Social service agency letter I.D.
- Employee I.D.
- Social Security card
- Birth Papers
- Baptism papers
What's on your bill?
All bills include:
- Customer name
- Mailing address
- Service address (if not the same as the mailing address)
- Current meter reading and date
- Prior meter reading and date
- Number of electric units used
- Whether it was an actual or estimated reading
- Number of days billed
- Class of service
You will be sent a bill about every 28-31 days. To avoid a late payment charge or shut-off notice, pay your bill by the date printed on your bill.
Some customers are able to pay their winter heating bills but do not. We may take legal action to collect payment from these customers. These customers may also have to pay our costs of collecting payment.
Late Payment Charges
A utility can add a late payment charge if your:
- Bill is not paid by the date printed on your bill
- Meter has been tampered with
A late payment charge can be:
- A one time charge of 3% of current unpaid charges (minimum 30¢), OR
- A monthly charge of up to 1% of the total unpaid balance (including unpaid late payment charges).
Budget Payment Plans
To manage high winter or summer electric bills, ask us about a budget payment plan. This allows you to average estimated annual use into even monthly payments. Each six months your payment amount is reviewed to reflect your actual use. At the end of a budget year, your bill is adjusted to correct overbilling or underbilling. These payment plans are available to all residential electric customers, even if in arrears.
A Deposit May Be Required
- If you are a NEW residential customer, you may be asked to post a deposit if:
- You did not pay an undisputed bill for the same type of service anywhere in Wisconsin during the last six years
- If you are a current residential customer, you may asked to post a deposit if:
- Your service was shut-off during the last 12 months,
- You falsified a service application,
- Your payment for service from November 1 - April 15 is 80 days or more overdue.
- You do not have to post a deposit if you income is below 200% of the Federal Poverty level guidelines.
A normal deposit is the sum of the two largest consecutive bills during the last 12 months:
The deposit for those who are able to pay their winter heating bill, but do not, is the sum of the four largest consecutive bills during the last 12 months
A utility must pay you interest on your deposit. Each year the PSC sets a new interest rate. Your deposit and any interest earned must be returned to you after you have paid your bills promptly for 12 months.
Installment Plans for Overdue Bills
You may use an installment plan to pay what you owe us. This helps you pay your current bills and any overdue bills. You will be asked to make a ''fair" downpayment and "fair" installments. A "fair" amount is based on:
- Your ability to pay
- The size of your overdue bill
- How long your bill has been overdue
- Other important factors
We may ask you to sign an installment agreement. Do not sign it unless you agree to the terms. You have a right to negotiate an installment agreement.
If you do not pay installments as agreed, we may shut off your service. If you do not pay, we do not have to negotiate an agreement before we shut off your service. It is up to you to let us know about important reasons to negotiate a new plans.
If we cannot agree on an installment plan, you can file a dispute with the PSC. While the PSC reviews your dispute, your service should not be shut off. However, you must pay all bills not in dispute.
A utility must send you a notice before your service is shut off.
This notice must include:
- Reason for the shut-off
- Date when service can be shut-off
- How to contact the utility about the shut-off
This notice must be sent to your home or mailing address at least ten days before the shut-off. A notice must also be posted at the service address, if it is not the same as your home or mailing address. The utility is also required to try contacting you by phone or in person before service is shut off. If service is not shut off within 15 days after the notice is mailed, the utility must leave a new notice at the site 24 (but not more than 48) hours before service is shut off
Your service cannot be shut off if:
- You fail to pay for merchandise or nonutility service,
- You fail to pay an account with a different class of service
Your service can be shut off if:
- You fail to pay your bills,
- You fail to pay installments as agreed,
- You fail to post required deposits,
- A prior customer living at your address has an unpaid bill,
- You fail to pay the utilities' cost for collecting an overdue bill,
- You tamper with your meter,
- There is a safety hazard.
PSC rules allow a utility to transfer a landlord's unpaid bill from a rental residential property to the office or home of the landlord or property manager. If the bill continues to go unpaid, service can be shut off at the landlord's or property manager's office or home.
For extra time to make payments or arrangements, we will delay service shut-off, or restore service if shut off, for 21 days if there is a medical problem or other crisis. We may ask for a letter about the crisis from your:
- Public health official
- Social service official
- Police or sheriff
It is also possible to extend the 21 day delay.
Third Party Shut-Off Notice
You can ask us to send a copy of your shut-off notice to a relative, guardian or other third party. You can also ask us to contact you when a relative's service is in danger of being shut off.
Winter Shut-Off Rules
If there is no threat to human health or life, a utility can shut off service from November 1 - April 15 if a household income is greater than 250% of the Federal Poverty level guidelines.
Before service can be shut off, a utility:
- Vice president or higher executive must give written approval
- Must deliver this written approval to the PSC by 3:30 p.m. the day service is to be shut-off
- Must visit the site where service has been shut off the next day to:
- Check customer's well-being
- Tell the customer about payment plans
- Tell the customer about special assistance
These rules also apply to business and farm accounts serving residential dwellings.
How to Turn on Service Before it Gets Cold
Before winter, a utility must contact customers whose service was shut off for nonpayment of bills. Each utility makes a special effort to turn on service before it gets cold. If you know of someone who has no heat, call your utility. You do not have to give your name. If service is not turned on quickly, call PSC at (608) 266-2001 or 1-800-225-7729.
Have A Dispute?
First contact us to try to solve the problem. If you are behind on your bill, we will offer you an installment plan to pay your bill.
If we cannot solve your problem logon to PSC, or call the PSC at (608) 266-2001 or 1-800-225-7729. While the PSC reviews your dispute, your service should not be shut off. However, you must still promptly pay any charge not in dispute. After the PSC completes its review, a staff member will contact us and attempt to find an agreement that is acceptable to all parties.
For a copy of all rules concerning utility customers visit PSC, or write to:Document Sales
P.O. Box 7840
Madison, WI 53707
(There is a charge for these materials)
Wisconsin Sales Tax Information:
Electricity for residential use during the months of November, December, January, February, March and April are exempt from the Wisconsin Sales Tax.
Electricity for use in farming is exempt. A Wisconsin Sales and Use Tax Exemption Certificate(form S-211) needs to be completed for this exemption.
If you need an exemption certificate, please contact our office to obtain a form or print one from the Wisconsin Department of Revenue's website. S-211
Loss of Electric Power?
Although we try to provide uninterrupted electrical service, circumstances beyond our control can cause electrical power failures.
It is important for the utility to be informed when electrical service is interrupted. Please call us if you feel it is the Utilities' system problem or have questions when outages do occur.
You may be able to save time if you first try to determine the cause. Answers to the following questions will aid us in determining the cause for the interruption. When calling our business office, questions similar to those above will be discussed. Your help in providing us with the details will aid us in restoring electrical service quickly.
- Is there no power or partial power?
- Do neighbors have full power, partial power, or no power?
- Have circuit breakers/fuses been checked? Sometimes, meter sockets or pedestals may also contain breakers. Turn "off' and "on" to reset or replace blown fuse.
- Was there a loud noise outside?(A transformer fuse may have "blown")
- Is there arcing/sparking on wires?
- Had lights been flickering before going out?
- Is there a wire or wires broken on the utilities system? (Stay away front broken or down wires)
When calling our business office, questions similar to those above will be discussed. Your help in providing us with the details will aid us in restoring electrical service quickly.