4901:1-10-20 Fraudulent act, tampering, and theft of service.

(A) Each electric utility shall establish and maintain an anti-theft and anti-tampering plan and shall submit its plan and subsequent amendments to the director of the service monitoring and enforcement department.

(B) Disconnection of service for tampering or unauthorized reconnection.

(1) An electric utility may disconnect service for safety reasons without prior notice to a customer in either of the following circumstances:

(a) The electric service meter, metering equipment, or associated property was damaged, interfered or tampered with, displaced, or bypassed.

(b) A person not authorized by the electric utility has reconnected service.

(2) Each which electric utility that has disconnected service under this paragraph shall tag or seal the customer's meter and hand deliver a written notice to the customer or consumer at the service location. If no adult customer or consumer is present, each electric utility shall attach written notice to a conspicuous place on the premises. When an electric utility reasonably believes that tagging or sealing the meter, hand delivering a notice, or posting a notice may jeopardize employee safety, it shall promptly mail the notice, return receipt requested, to the customer or occupant. The notice shall clearly display each of the following items:

(a) An explanation that service was disconnected because one of the following circumstances was found:

(i) The meter, metering equipment and/or electric utility property was tampered with.

(ii) A person not authorized by the electric utility reconnected the customer's service.

(b) The electric utility's telephone number of the electric utility's office.

(c) A statement that the customer may contest the disconnection by contacting an electric utility representative at the telephone number provided.

(d) A statement that, if the customer does not contest the disconnection, the electric utility is not required to restore service until the customer has provided satisfactory assurances that such tampering or unauthorized reconnection has ceased and has paid or made satisfactory arrangements to pay the electric utility an amount that the electric utility calculates for unmetered service, any defaulted amount, any damage to the electric utility's equipment or meter, any security deposit (consistent with rule 4901:1-10-14 of the Administrative Code), and any tariffed reconnection and investigation charges.

(e) A statement that the staff is available to render assistance, and the commission's current address, toll-free and TTY numbers of the commission's call center, and the commission's website.

(3) If the customer meets with the electric utility to contest the disconnection, the electric utility shall timely mail or deliver its decision to the customer.

(C) Disconnection of service for fraudulent act.

An electric utility may disconnect service, after following the steps set forth in this paragraph, when a customer uses any fraudulent act, as defined by paragraph (O) of rule 4901:1-10-01 of the Administrative Code, to obtain or maintain service

(1) Before it may disconnect service for a fraudulent act, each electric utility shall hand deliver written notice to the customer or consumer at the service location. If no adult customer or consumer is present, the electric utility shall attach written notice to a conspicuous place on the premises. When an electric utility reasonably believes that hand delivering or posting notice may jeopardize employee safety, it shall promptly mail the notice, return receipt requested, to the customer or occupant.

(2) The notice shall clearly display each of the following items:

(a) A description of the alleged fraudulent act.

(b) The address and telephone number of the electric utility's office.

(c) A statement that the customer may contest the electric utility's findings by requesting a meeting with an electric utility representative.

(d) A statement that the electric utility may disconnect service if either of the following occurs:

(i) The customer does not contact the electric utility representative to contest the findings of the fraudulent act, within three business days after receiving this notice.

(ii) The customer does not provide a satisfactory explanation at that meeting.

(e) A statement that, if service is disconnected, the electric utility is not required to reconnect service until the customer pays or makes satisfactory arrangements to pay the electric utility the bill for service that was fraudulently obtained or maintained, any security deposit (consistent with rule 4901:1-10-14 of the Administrative Code), and any tariffed reconnection and investigation charges.

(f) A statement that the staff is available to render assistance, and the commission's current address, toll-free and TTY numbers of the commission's call center, and the commission's website.

(3) An electric utility may terminate service for a fraudulent act in the following circumstances:

(a) No sooner than three business days after delivery of the written notice required by this paragraph, if the customer does not contact the electric utility at the telephone number provided.

(b) No sooner than two business days after the customer received the electric utility's written adverse decision subsequent to the discussion between the customer and the electric utility representative, in the event that the customer initiated the discussion.

(D) Each electric utility shall maintain records that clearly set forth the basis for its decision to terminate service for a fraudulent act, tampering, unauthorized reconnection, or theft of service, and the steps taken under this rule.

Effective: 06/29/2009
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 11/26/2008 and 09/30/2012
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 4905.22 , 4905.04 , 4928.06 , 4928.11
Rule Amplifies: 4928.11 , 4905.06 , 4905.22 , 4933.122 , 4933.18 , 4933.19
Prior Effective Dates: 7/1/99, 9/18/00, 1/1/04