Support for the people of Medway

The energy market: Your questions answered

Energy markets from natural gas to carbon permits have been spurred by a supply shortage just as the winter season starts. This means you have probably heard more about energy in the last couple of days than ever before! This comes as energy companies are closing at unprecedented rates, with around 1.7 million customers (at the time of writing this) being affected since the beginning of September 2021. Some customers have been switched to a new supplier quickly whereas others have been left answerless. The sad news is that energy bills are only going to go up. Ofgem, the energy regulator, announced a £139 increase in the price cap (on top of a £75 increase from earlier in the year). This is why energy suppliers who cannot afford to buy gas and electricity from the wholesale markets are going bust, with more expected to collapse in the coming weeks.

Citizens Advice Medway are here to help you answer your burning (no pun intended!) energy questions. The current energy market conditions mean that suppliers may be less able to provide protection, which is why it is important to note that Citizens Advice is in discussion with the Government, regulators, and industry leaders about a plan to support people with further increases in energy costs over the coming year. 

What if my energy supplier has gone bust?

Do not worry - you will still have gas and electricity, even if your energy supplier goes out of business. The Government has preparations in place for when suppliers go bust. 

Within a few weeks, the gas and electricity regulator, Ofgem, will simply move you to a new supplier. We recommend once you know your energy supplier has gone bust, to take a meter reading (and take a photo if possible).

You should wait for your new supplier to contact you. They will explain what will happen to your account. However, if you don’t hear from them within 2 weeks contact your new supplier - if you are not sure who your new supplier is, you can check who has taken over your energy supply here.

We urge you, please do not switch tariff or supplier until your account is moved to the new supplier. You might find it harder to get any money you are owed if you switch before this happens.

What if I did not agree to switch energy suppliers?

This may happen if you get an unexpected final bill or a welcome letter from an energy supplier or even your supply may have been switched without your agreement. This could happen either if:

  • A supplier made a mistake, for example by confusing your address with someone else’s
  • You were misled by a salesperson

If this does happen you will need to contact either your old supplier or the new one. It is usually easiest to call - you can find their details on any letters they send. You will need to explain that you did not agree to the switch. You can then ask them to cancel it if it’s still in progress. But, if the switch has already happened, ask them to reverse it. Once you’ve contacted the supplier, they should write to you within:

  • 5 working days to explain what they plan to do, and when
  • 20 working days to confirm they’re reversing the switch or explain why they believed it was correct

How can Citizens Advice help?

If you have any other questions or problems regarding your energy you can explore them here. Citizens Advice are always available for a confidential, independent, impartial and free service with the aims of providing quality advice and campaigning for fairer practices both locally and nationally.

If you need any other advice or support, you can access our services via the following options:

  • You can call us on 01634 383 760 between 9:00 am and 5:00 pm Monday to Friday. Local call rates apply.
  • You can email us at We will aim to get back to you within 5 working days. 
  • You can access our webchat service through the button on the right side of each webpage on this site between 10:00 am and 12:00 pm Monday to Wednesday. Click here to be directed to our contact page.

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