Energy schemes - Priority Services Register (Energy companies)
If you are struggling to pay your energy bills, find out about the help you can get.
- Last reviewed 23 October 2023
Priority Services Register (Energy companies)
Energy companies have registers of customers who would be most at risk if their energy was cut off.
This includes older people, people with illnesses or disabilities, and families with young children.
If you are over 66, ill or disabled, or have children living at home, ask your energy company if you can be added to their Priority Services Register.
This provides you with free extra services and may help protect you from disconnection if you struggle to pay your energy bills if your supplier has signed up to the Vulnerability Commitment.
Priority Services Register services might include:
Advance notice of planned power cuts for customers who depend on their energy supply for medical reasons.
Priority in an emergency (this could include providing alternative heating and cooking facilities in the event of supply disconnection).
Password protection scheme to provide reassurance that callers, for example meter readers, are genuine.
Bill nominee scheme – customers can ask their supplier to send their bill to anybody (for example a family member or carer) who has agreed to receive it.
Prepayment meters – if a customer is unable reach their prepayment meter, they can ask for it to be moved.
Quarterly meter reading services (if no one in the property is able to read the meter).
Accessible information – suppliers can provide customers with account and bill information in an accessible format, e.g. larger print or Braille.
Annual gas appliance safety checks for homeowners. If you do not own your own home, your landlord is responsible for ensuring that any gas appliances, fittings and flues are safe.
If you are on the priority services register, suppliers are not allowed to disconnect your energy during the winter (October to March).
If you have a different supplier for your gas and electricity, you need to register with both.
For more information on who qualifies and how to register visit the Ofgem website.
If your supplier has signed up to the Energy UK Vulnerability Commitment, they have agreed to a set of principles to protect vulnerable customers. This includes:
- not disconnecting households with children under 6.
- not disconnecting households with children under 16 between October and March.
- not disconnecting households where the customer is unable to protect their own personal welfare because of age, disability, health or severe financial insecurity.
Suppliers may also work with charities and support agencies when they identify signs of vulnerability in a household.