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Meralco forced me to pay my late dad's arrears

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dudztgp


Arresto Menor
Good day!

I’m praying you can give me an advice on how to go about this. Meralco forced me to sign an agreement wherein, I will pay the arrears of my late father.

Here’s my story. Last 2001, my dad was wrongfully accused of meter tampering. And so, Meralco pulled out the meter and disconnected the service. They checked all the appliances and everything, charged my dad roughly Php 400,000. But my dad refused to pay since there's no evidence of tampering.

By the way, since 2001, I lived with my grandparents so I'm not aware of what happened. Fast forward to 2009, my dad passed away. I decided to take care of the house but there's no supply of electricity. I applied to Meralco. However, they refused. Not until I pay the amount due, they will not process my application.

And because I wanted the place so bad, I decided to cooperate. In short, I signed an agreement to settle the amount which they discounted at 40%. It’s down to Php 200,000 with an installment plan of Php 800/mo. I've done the math and it will take 27 years to pay. Besides, if I fail to make payment in time, they will cut off the service and that includes the adjacent houses on the same block.

All the houses on the same address block were not allowed to apply for electricity to begin with. Before I decided to occupy the house, they were told someone has to bear the expenses in order to process the rest of the application. I volunteered to shoulder the installment since it was under my dad’s provision.

After I’ve done my research, I found out that they violated ERB Resolution No. 95-21, Section 48, same details in Magna Carta for Residential Electricity Consumer, Chapter II, Article 18, but unfortunately, it’s too late and I’m already bound to pay because I agreed with the terms. Moreover, I may have misunderstood the articles mentioned.

Is there a possibility to render the agreement null and void? Getting back what I paid for is the least of my concern now. I just need assistance to stop the nuisance of paying for something I didn’t owe. The account with the alleged violation was under my grandmother's name. The last time I checked, they transferred the amount due under my name. I don’t think it’s fair.

I’m looking forward for your guidance.

Thank you very much! God Bless!

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attyLLL


moderator
if you hadn't settled, they would not have installed electricity.

your remedy is to write to the company addressed to their customer service and state your position. after which you will have to elevate your case to the ERC.


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dudztgp


Arresto Menor
Thank you very much for the response. I'll do as advised.

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js82


Arresto Menor
Sir, may you clarify this for me. The questioner mentioned ERB Resolution No. 95-21 & the Magna Carta. Does the term "unpaid bill" below also refer to unpaid penalty fee billed on account of discovered tampered meter? Or does it refer strictly only to unpaid monthly bills? Thanks!

_________

ERB Resolution No. 95-21. SEC. 48. Refusal or Discontinuance of Service. – An electric utility shall not refuse or discontinue service to an applicant, or customer, who is not in arrears to the electric utility, even though there are unpaid charges due from the premises occupied by the applicant, or customer, on account of unpaid bill of a prior tenant, unless here is evidence of conspiracy between them to defraud the electric utility.

MAGNA CARTA FOR ELECTRICITY CONSUMERS, Article 20. Right to Electric Service Despite Arrearages of Previous Occupant. - An electric utility shall not refuse or discontinue service to an applicant or customer, who is not in arrears to the electric utility, even though there are unpaid charges due from the premises occupied by the applicant, or customer, on account of unpaid bill of a prior tenant, unless there is evidence of conspiracy to defraud the electric utility.

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attyLLL


moderator
js, you can argue it that way, but the things is the elec coops sometimes take the position that you pay first then force you to file a case


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