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Thread: Opus Energy [& Energy supplier contract]

  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    Aug 2003
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    Opus Energy [& Energy supplier contract]

    I was wondering whether any of you can provide some input regarding a problem my flatmate is facing.

    Some time in September, Opus Energy called my flatmate's workplace. He should've hanged up straight away, he didn't. It is my understanding that at that point, there was/is the possibility that the business will eventually be passed on to him. Once that happens, he would be free to continue/change energy supplier as he sees fit. Somehow Opus energy talked him into accepting to change from the current provider (Scottish Hydro Electric) to them. He gave them the direct debit details of the business account he set up [big mistake - but no point digging onto this point anymore] with clear instructions not to open a new account until further notice (as the date the new business will start was not determined).

    I am sure you can guess where this is going now. Opus Energy ignored this request, opened an account, and took the money from the direct debit (when there was no money in that account - meaning that he ended up having to pay a fee to the bank too). When he called them up saying that he was not the owner of the place and requested a refund the for the sum withdrawn, they told him to write a letter. He sent a letter with a copy of the council tax bill and they apparently called him back saying they do not believe him

    He cancelled the direct debit, but the problem is, he is still getting the bills (remainders) from Opus energy, while the actual owner of the place is still on Scottish Hydro Electric. In other word, the same place is being billed -twice-! (Didn't know that was possible!). And here's is the messed up part. When he informed Opus Energy that they are still on Scottish Hydro Electric, Opus Energy basically sent a letter back telling them that since he is now in a contract with them, and the contract is not over yet, hence the (non-existent - it was actually a statement) request for Scottish Hydro Electric to 'take over' is being declined!

    Anyway, cancelling the direct debit is not a long term solution (in fact, I am quite sure it could get him into trouble), he'll have to get to the bottom of this. Does anyone have a suggestion as to how he should proceed?

    There are a couple of things I am puzzled about:

    1. Since he is not the owner of the property, surely he has no authority to change energy supplier in the first place (hence the contract is invalid)?

    2. What are the terms/conditions for an oral contract to be valid: In the event of a conflict a conflict (as there is now), would my flatmate be required to prove that he never agreed to the contract, or is Opus Energy be the ones who are required to prove that my flatmate agreed to the contract?

    3. Is giving the direct debit details the same thing as signing a contract?

    Last edited by TooNice; 16-11-2007 at 12:40 AM.

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