Retail Supplier Files Complaint At PUC Alleging Misrepresentation By Competitor
December 5, 2017 Email This Story Copyright 2010-17 EnergyChoiceMatters.com
Reporting by Paul Ring • email@example.com
Interstate Gas Supply (IGS Energy) filed a complaint with the Public Utility Commission of Ohio against Titan Gas LLC (Respondent) alleging that Titan's sales representatives made representations to customers with the alleged intent to mislead IGS’ customers into believing that Titan's representatives are affiliated with IGS
IGS Energy alleged, "Starting on or about August 9, 2017, Respondent’s sales representatives began contacting IGS’ customers via telephone using the number 1-888-992-8155 at ext. 123; and represented to those customers that the caller is an Account Manager employed by 'IDS Energy.'"
IGS Energy alleged, "Upon information and belief, 'IDS Energy' is not affiliated with Respondent, nor is it registered with the Ohio Secretary of State or certified by the Commission to conduct business in Ohio."
IGS Energy alleged, "As part of its sales pitch to IGS’ customers, Respondent’s representatives inform the customer that his or her 'low fixed rate plan' has expired and will rollover to a variable rate plan 'that can go very high [in] any given month' regardless of whether either statement is true. The representative then offers that 'since [the customer] is a valued customer,' Respondent would be willing to 'renew' the low fixed rate so long as the customer contacts Respondent 'immediately' to discuss his or her account in more detail."
IGS Energy alleged, "Upon information and belief, Respondent acts with intent to mislead IGS’ customers into believing that Respondent is affiliated with Complainant so that IGS’ customers will call Respondent to inquire about the status of their account. Upon information and belief, Respondent then solicits the IGS customer with a different offer to enroll with Respondent’s products and services."
IGS Energy alleged that Respondent’s representations and various actions violated several provisions of the Ohio Admin. Code. and Revised Code. Specifically, among other things, IGS Energy alleged that Respondent’s representations, whether express or implied, that it was soliciting electric customers on behalf of Complainant constitute a misleading, deceptive, and unconscionable sales and marketing practice in violation of Ohio Admin. Code 4901:1-21-05(C) and R.C. 4928.10.
Among other things, IGS Energy sought the following relief:
• Assessing a civil penalty in the amount of Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000) per violation as provided in R.C. 4905.54.
• Treble damages as provided in R.C. 4905.61.
• Preliminarily and permanently enjoining Respondent from engaging in the deceptive and unfair practices alleged in the complaint
Titan Gas, in a statement provided to ECM, said, "Titan Gas was just made aware of this complaint, and will respond accordingly."
In a statement provided to ECM, Matt White, general counsel for IGS Energy, said, "We are deeply concerned when any company is making false or misleading claims to customers, particularly when it implicates IGS’ brand. We trust that the PUCO will reach the proper conclusion in this matter."