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Covid 19 and Your Business Water Supply

Since the commencement of the lockdown, Covid-19 has had an unprecedented impact on business across the UK. To support your business and its response to the crisis this article should show you what positive actions you can take concerning your business water supply.

Let’s have a look at the actions you can take concerning your business water supply.

Temporary business premise closure

If you’ve had to close a business premise during the lockdown, you can reduce your water charges through:

  • If a business premise was closed between 16 March 2020 and 31 July 2020 Ofwat will allow the premise to be treated as a temporary closure for water charge purposes. The temporary closure status will mean your account will be put on hold, and no water charges will be levied through the closure period.
  • If your premise has been partially utilised or closed for a period you will be using less water than usual. By providing your supplier with a meter reading, your reduced usage will be registered with the supplier resulting in lower charges in your next bill. If you pay your water bills through direct debit providing a meter reading showing reduced usage will result in lower payments.

Difficulties making water bill payments

Business suppliers are offering Covid-19 related repayment schemes to help businesses that are finding it difficult to make water bill payments.

Under these support schemes, your business may be able to agree with the supplier to spread the payment of overdue water invoices over an agreed repayment period.

If you are unable to make payment for a business water bill as it comes due it’s recommend you contact your supplier to keep them informed of the situation.

Enforcement actions on unpaid bills

If your business is unable to make payment for a water bill between 16 March 2020 and 31 July 2020 business water suppliers cannot take enforcement steps to recover unpaid bills. Your business should not receive:

  • Late payment penalties
  • Interest charges
  • A notice of disconnection

Getting in touch with your business water supplier

The options presented above are based upon Ofwat’s (the regulator) guidance. The exact steps you will need to take will vary from supplier to supplier. To find the steps relevant to your business please visit the website of your current supplier.

It’s a difficult time for business, including the suppliers of water themselves. You should keep your supplier up to date with any changes to your business that will impact your water usage. When any of your business premises reopen, it’s recommend that you contact your supplier to let them know.

If you are looking to switch your business water supply in the future, feel free to reach out to an expert.

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