"Hot Weather Rule" - Utility Disconnections

What is the Hot Weather Rule?  The Hot Weather Rule prohibits utilities from disconnecting residential electricity service due to nonpayment of a utility bill during times of extreme heat.

 

When does the Hot Weather Rule go into effect? The Hot Weather Rules goes into effect every year from June 1 to September 30. 

 

Which utilities must follow the Hot Weather Rule? Missouri's Hot Weather Rule applies to every electric utility service provider, no matter where you live in the state of Missouri, and no matter who provides your electricity service.

 

How “hot” does it have to be? On any day when the National Weather Service local forecast predicts that the temperature will be greater than 95 degrees or the heat index will be greater than 105 degrees, utility providers are prohibited from disconnecting electricity service.

 

Does the Hot Weather Rule apply to gas service shut-offs for nonpayment of the utility bill? It only applies if gas service is used as the source of cooling or to operate the only cooling equipment in your home.

 

Are there any other shut-off rules? Yes, a utility cannot disconnect service on days where it will not be available to reconnect service the day after the extreme heat. 

 

What can I do if I am facing an illegal shut-off? If a utility attempts to disconnect your electric service on a day the rule is in effect, remind the utility that disconnection is prohibited and immediately call the Missouri Public Service Commission (1-800-392-4211) or the Missouri Attorney General (1-800-392-8222).

 

Prepared by Legal Services of Eastern Missouri, Inc. (LSEM).  LSEM provides this educational information as a public service.  It is not legal advice. Sometimes the laws change.  Always consult a lawyer, if you can, before taking legal action.  The mission of LSEM is to provide high-quality civil legal assistance and equal access to justice for low-income people in Eastern Missouri. Last updated:  August 2013.

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