Help for consumers impacted by COVID-19

In March 2020 at the beginning of the pandemic, the AER released a Statement of Expectations of energy businesses Protecting customers and the energy market during COVID-19. The Statement of Expectations will cease on 30 June 2021, however there is still ongoing support available under the National Energy Retail Law for customers experiencing financial difficulty. The AER may provide extra protections if further stay-at-home orders are announced for NSW, Tasmania, ACT, Queensland and South Australia.

If you are worried about paying your electricity or gas bill, contact your energy provider as soon as possible and ask them what assistance is available. Encourage your family and friends who need help to call their energy provider too.

Your energy provider can offer a range of assistance, including payment extensions, payment plans, hardship programs, and information about concessions, rebates and other support to help you stay connected and has translation services available for you and contact details are on your bill. 

Consumers can also shop around for a better energy deal through the AER’s Energy Made Easy website which offers a free energy price comparison service for households and small businesses.

Greater Sydney residential and small business customers

Support is available for those experiencing financial stress as a result of the NSW COVID-19 restrictions, in line with the AER’s standby Statement of Expectations announced on 29 June. Call your retailer and ask about the help available to you.

Extra supports are now available, including protection from disconnection and debt collection, and access to payment plans and hardship programs. We expect energy businesses to provide additional protections for the duration of the stay-at-home orders, plus an additional two weeks after this.

State and Territory support

Additional assistance in response to COVID-19 may vary by state. For state-specific information, visit the relevant Energy Ombudsman schemes and state government COVID-19 support pages in your state/territory:

Shareable content

We would like stakeholders to help encourage consumers to call their retailer for help.

We have created content for stakeholders to share with their community members, and worked with community stakeholders to create translated materials for culturally and linguistically diverse consumers. This content has also been incorporated into translated social media tiles.

Download images for use on social media. Each image suggests a way to get help with your energy bill if impacted by COVID-19. ( ZIP 379.35 KB )

Translated content

We worked with community stakeholders to create translated materials for culturally and linguistically diverse consumers.

Newsletter and website text (PDF)

The following text has been translated: 

Can’t pay your bill? Contact your local energy company for help. If you can’t pay your electricity or gas bill, contact the company that sends you a bill and ask them for help.

Your energy company has translation services available for you. You can find the contact details on your bill. Encourage your family and friends who need help to call their energy company too.

600 x 600px (Facebook)

1200 x 627 pixels (LinkedIn)

1024 x 512 pixels (Twitter)