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Annual Update of Bill Deposit/ Meralco Bill Deposits

Posted Oct 28 2012 5:06am

I just paid my Meralco bill a few days ago when I received another notice from them.. not a disconnection notice but a Bill Deposit due.. Bill Deposit?!? what the?!?

Another shocking thing about this bill is, I need to pay PhP4000+ in a month’s time or else my service will be disconnected,  yes even though I am paying my bill monthly.. it’s just plain unbelievable!

According to my notice, this is an annual updating of bill deposits as required by ERC Rules and Regulation. Here’s what the bill has to say about my 4000 Php due:

Based on the comparison made between your bill deposit and average monthly bills for the past 12 months, your bill deposit has been determined insufficient. You will be required to pay an additional deposit.

Based on the notice, my average monthly bill is Php 7000+, which is also my required bill deposit amount but because I have 3000+ credits from existing bill deposits and net bill deposit interests, my due is only 4000 PhP.

After calming down, I read and re read the notice and learned that this annual updating has two implications:

First, the bill deposit annual updating where in it will have to be equal to the monthly average bill. If your average monthly bill exceeds your bill deposit, you will have to pay the excess or if your average monthly bill is less than your bill deposits, you are entitled to a refund.

Second, the deposits interest will be credited yearly to the bill.

Insufficient Deposit Average monthly bill (for one year) 800
Bill Deposit + Interest 650

Average monthly bill- Bill deposits (+interest) = 150 < additional bill deposit to be paid by the costumer

Excess Deposit Average monthly bill (for one year) 500
Bill Deposit + Interest 650

Average monthly bill- Bill deposits (+interest) = -150 < refund (credited to the bill)

Meralco website offered a more detailed FAQ’s and some explanations:

Meralco said that only 90,000 of its customers got letters this October notifying them of the need to pay additional bill deposit. It added that a majority of its customers are not expected to be covered by the update of bill deposits. The utility company clarified that only customers who have received at least three (3) disconnection notices or whose electric service has actually been disconnected in the past 12 months prior to their contract anniversary date have received these notification letters.

Customers who have been diligent in paying their electricity bills on or before due date, meanwhile, did not receive letters.

For all customers from whom additional bill deposit is required, Meralco will implement a collection scheme to make the payment easier for them. From the original period of 30 days to settle their deposit insufficiency, Meralco has manifested before the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) that it will instead stagger the collection over a period of 12 months starting January 2013. This collection period will also apply to customers who will receive notification letters in November and December.

The bill deposit is an amount required from customers of all distribution utilities as a guarantee for payment of electric bills. The bill deposit and its annual update are based on the provisions of the Magna Carta for Residential Consumers and the Distribution Services and Open Access Rules (DSOAR) for Residential and Non-residential Consumers, which Meralco is implementing.

So that’s what we got for my procrastination..every month, I pay our Meralco bills only after receiving our disconnection notice.. never thought it would have a bad effect on our bill.. maybe I should apply for online payment to prevent this thing from happening again.

Annual Update of Bill Deposit Frequently Asked Questions can be found here.

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