3. Arrears in another person’s name
You may not be liable for an electricity or gas bill which is in another person’s name – eg, if your partner was previously responsible for the bill and has left home, if you are a joint tenant or sharer, or if the person responsible for the bill has died. In most cases, it is possible to reach a settlement by way of a new contract between the supplier and the person taking over responsibility for supply.
You cannot be held liable for the bill while there is a genuine dispute about liability – eg, where you have been charged for supply incurred by the previous occupier of your premises.1Sch 6 para 2 EA 19894. Arrears as a result of estimated bills See Chapter 5 for who is liable for a bill. Under rules on joint and several liability, the supplier can try to reclaim the whole amount from one or all parties to an agreement. Any discount is at the supplier’s discretion.