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Left but direct debits still being taken out

  • 20 January 2020
  • 33 replies
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Hi I left Pure Plant in December but my direct debits are still being taken out and I have not received a final bill. Please can you advise thank you
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Best answer by Angelabikerbabe 20 January 2020, 11:18

Hi
A switch normally takes up to 6 weeks to complete, as all the details have to go through a 3rd party verifier.

Once the switch has completed, PP will issue your final bill and if you're in credit, they will refund you. (Or if you owe them, they'll take a final payment)

Don't cancel your DD, because they won't be able to refund you then.
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Userlevel 7
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Hi
A switch normally takes up to 6 weeks to complete, as all the details have to go through a 3rd party verifier.

Once the switch has completed, PP will issue your final bill and if you're in credit, they will refund you. (Or if you owe them, they'll take a final payment)

Don't cancel your DD, because they won't be able to refund you then.
Hi,

My switch from pure planet is complete, when will I receive my refund?

If its not done soon then pure planet will take another £66 from the direct debit, even though they owe me money.

It seems highly dodgy for pure planet to take so long to refund, and then to continue to take more money via direct debit during this period. I've never experienced this with another supplier.

My account has been closed on the app so how do I even speak to a member of staff?

​​​​​​​This seems poorly managed
Hi,

I'm in the same situation, from reading here it appears I'd have to let pure planet take another £66 by direct debit even though my switch is complete, because they take 6 weeks to refund and I won't get the money that pure planet owes me if I cancel my direct debit.

​​​​​​​This doesn't seem legal surely?
Userlevel 7
Badge +9
Hi Tom,

Just to advise that I am another member and concur with the above advice on "industry protocol" relating to supplier final billing.
I note your other threads and would ask as an ex PP customer have you still got access to your account?
Because the method of contacting PP's HQ is via their communication tool wattBot which is the digital assistant we all use.
First type "Message the Team" and ask for a DD reduction until the final bill is produced and your credit returned.
Its the weekend.. responses during working hours are within 2 days, often sooner and a text is sent as a reminder if your busy.

This is no different than other supplier and PP are very reputable company and not in the business of stitching US up, so to speak...
Head back if you have a problem as theres other ways to resolve your concerns.

Hope this assists a little...
TomPearce;47137:
Hi,

I'm in the same situation, from reading here it appears I'd have to let pure planet take another £66 by direct debit even though my switch is complete, because they take 6 weeks to refund and I won't get the money that pure planet owes me if I cancel my direct debit.

​​​​​​​This doesn't seem legal surely?


Hi @TomPearce,

The industry "norm" to produce a "final bill" is 6 weeks (it's not a PP thing) 👍

The reason your "advised" not to cancel your DD, is to ensure that PP is able to provide your credit ba!ance to you. If you cancel your DD, then PP will not have your bank account details to pay back your credit. The same obviously applies if you have a debit balance at the end of your time with PP. All energy suppliers follow this procedure.

If you cancel your DD then you will have to provide "new bank details" to receive any credit balance due. It's not meant as a "threat" or to "intimidate" customers......quite the opposite.

If your next DD falls during the switching process, then this payment will be included in the "final bill" calculations.

So worry not.....all is above board, and ethically done.

I neither work for nor represent PP I'm simply a satisfied customer.
Hi, to clarify, my switch is complete, done and dusted, I'm now just waiting for my money that I'm owed.

As for the dd question, if what youre suggesting is the case, that PP are unable to find my bank details despite the payments I have made to them, then I would suggest this would probably fall in the criteria of a GDPR breech and should be raised with the ICO. Unless of course you're suggesting that PP delete all of their financial transactions, which in itself would put them foul of Hmrc legislation and regulations.

​​​​​​​I'd suggest it's done for the ease of PP themselves, at the cost of the customer experience. I did not have this difficulty the last time I changed supplier.
Userlevel 7
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hi Tom
It isn't a case of PP being unable to find your details, regulations are such that once cancelled PP are no longer allowed to use the data and I believe although not 100% sure that they MUST delete those details from their systems.
I simply do not believe that you have ever dealt with a company who are able to use that data once cancelled, if that is the case then that company is/was breaking the law. It is entirely correct that companies are not allowed to use those details without you giving them the info again. This has happened to me with two companies.
Perhaps last time you changed supplier you didn't delete the DD?
Also if in credit for a reasonable amount when you switch you can ask the company to either not take the DD or reduce to a nominal amount until the final bill is produced. It all depends on the timing, some hit lucky, others can have two more DD's taken before the bill is produced, but you also have a very robust DD guarantee where you can recall so you have a high level of protection.

I don't work for PP
​​​​​​​
TomPearce;47140:
Hi, to clarify, my switch is complete, done and dusted, I'm now just waiting for my money that I'm owed.

As for the dd question, if what youre suggesting is the case, that PP are unable to find my bank details despite the payments I have made to them, then I would suggest this would probably fall in the criteria of a GDPR breech and should be raised with the ICO. Unless of course you're suggesting that PP delete all of their financial transactions, which in itself would put them foul of Hmrc legislation and regulations.

​​​​​​​I'd suggest it's done for the ease of PP themselves, at the cost of the customer experience. I did not have this difficulty the last time I changed supplier.
Userlevel 7
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h Tom
​​​​​​​I just posted here.
TomPearce;47137:
Hi,

I'm in the same situation, from reading here it appears I'd have to let pure planet take another £66 by direct debit even though my switch is complete, because they take 6 weeks to refund and I won't get the money that pure planet owes me if I cancel my direct debit.

​​​​​​​This doesn't seem legal surely?
TomPearce;47140:

PP are unable to find my bank details despite the payments I have made to them, then I would suggest this would probably fall in the criteria of a GDPR breech and should be raised with the ICO.


If PP are 'unable to find your details' because you have 'left' and 'cancelled your direct debit' that is actually one of the safest ways of them ensuring they are not in breach of GDPR - which requires that data is 'kept in a form which permits identification of data subjects for no longer than is necessary for the purposes for which the personal data are processed' - you cancel your direct debit, then is it necessary for Pure Planet to retain dates for which there is no longer a 'purpose'?.

The 'duty' in GDPR is to 'keep data safe' not 'keep data' - data that is no longer required should arguably be completely destroyed where possible, although any utility provider will find this a difficult 'balancing act' between keeping what they need should there be any future issues/complaints - and not keeping 'too much information'.
​​​​​​​
Standard practice where I am a website admin is to either 'hard delete' or 'replace with gibberish' all possible 'personally identifiable information' - should someone tell us they are leaving, because then, should there be a 'data breach' we are only responsible for the data of 'live members'. That is what some highly paid experts (well, better paid than me, which isn't hard as I don't get paid) have advised the guy paying the bills.

​​​​​​​Kindest Regards
Gwynd.
Hi @TomPearce,
You have been given good, accurate advice from a few Community Forum members.
However you seem to want to believe your own misqued version of the correct advice that has been given to you.
This is of course your perogative...
Community Forum members will always attempt to assist anyone who posts to the Forum.
​​​​​​​What they can't do, is "force" you to believe/accept the advice.
If you had carried out a search of the Community Forum Posts and FAQ's, then the answer to your query/complaint, would have been available and obvious to you.
​​​​​​​ 🐴 2 💦 🚀
​​​​​
Userlevel 7
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That little emoji message should be added to your siggy, Gray 😂
Bev;47171:
That little emoji message should be added to your siggy, Gray 😂


​​​​​​​What does that actually say about me......might change my name to Victor 🤔😎🤣
Userlevel 7
Badge +8
Bev;47171:
That little emoji message should be added to your siggy, Gray 😂


​​​​​​​I'm ashamed to say, it took me a while to work out what it meant, I'm just not into emojis or what they mean. Sign of old age?
Duppy;47189:
​​​​​​​I'm ashamed to say, it took me a while to work out what it meant, I'm just not into emojis or what they mean. Sign of old age?


Gray.....64.....(Victor)
​​​​​​​(^_-)🥴🤯🤪🤡
Why not cancel the direct debit and just provide them with your bank details if and when a refund is required? I've just switched to Pure Planet, had an issue with them using the wrong electricity meter, raised a complaint online had no reply till I posted on here, I've supplied them with the information required, got another email from a different person telling me that my electricity meter readings don't match their estimated ones so obviously a lack of communication. After more than one month I received a reply to my initial email saying the information was insufficient and that I had to contact my current supplier which was strange since Pure Planet IS my current supplier. I've subsequently found out that Pure Planet are NOT supplying my electricity but still charging me for it. I'm now being charged twice under two different meters by them and my previous supplier. I've decided to switch back to my last supplier and I've also cancelled my direct debit because if I wait for this to be sorted they will take at least three months worth of money that I can't afford since I'm paying two suppliers.
Hi @Laura1,

That's not the course of action that I would have recommended tbh...you really need your actual meter identified and corrected on the national database....trying to switch while there is a discrepancy with your meter details, is, in my opinion, only going to get complicated.
​​​​​​​Your choice of course......good luck...😎
Userlevel 7
Badge +9
Hi Laura1.

sadly this happens sometimes when the information on the national database is incorrect. However just to clarify it is/was the proberly the fault of your previous supplier for not ensuring the data was correct while you was their customer. Usually happens when they change the meter.
Hi @ Gray4276, It wasn't actually a switch as my previous supplier was still supplying my electricity and they have now amended the database. I'm just waiting for my gas which was fine to also revert back to the previous supplier. I found dealing with Pure Planet very frustrating and slow. I've basically done all the leg work, granted the wrong database wasn't their fault but I noticed it, raised the query, all they've managed to do is send me an email 6 weeks after giving them all the details saying they needed more information and that I needed to contact my current supplier. I was under the impression they were supplying my electricity and were not, but were happy to charge me for it which I find unacceptable. My account is in credit and I'm also due a refund for the electricity, knowing how they operate, it will probably take months for them to generate a final bill so I that's why I cancelled the direct debit.
Userlevel 7
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hi Laura, I think there is a misunderstanding here.
It's quite usual (it's an industry thing not a PP thing) when you switch to a new supplier, for the previous supplier to continue to take DD's until the final bill is produced, If you're in credit with the old supplier they will usually suspend or reduce the direct debit until the final bill is produced.(if you ask)
In your case the final bill can't be produced because the meter readings can't be reconciled, probably because as said the meter has been changed and database has wrong info (not pp's fault)
I'm not defending PP but your statement that you had not switched to PP is incorrect, and to point out that if you hadn't switched you then wouldn't have had to switch back which you have said you did.
You can't be charged twice for the same energy whatever happens, so this would have eventually come right. The only part that concerns me is what at first glance appears to be a lack of joined up customer support, but my guess is there were other communications which have been overlooked (it's a guess) asking for photos of your meter.

Please don't take this the wrong way but had you pursued this without raising a complaint which extends the timeline considerably it would have been sorted with the usual channels.
Sometimes all that's required is a little patience, PP have dealt with this scenario mainly successfully hundreds of times before.
It's time consuming and most of the checking is done via a third party, there are no instant fixes.
That said I'm only a customer like you, I don't have access to whatever communications took place, but I'm writing this so anyone else reading it in the future can get a logical hold of how to proceed and what to expect.
​​​​​​​I wish you well.

Laura1;47386:
Why not cancel the direct debit and just provide them with your bank details if and when a refund is required? I've just switched to Pure Planet, had an issue with them using the wrong electricity meter, raised a complaint online had no reply till I posted on here, I've supplied them with the information required, got another email from a different person telling me that my electricity meter readings don't match their estimated ones so obviously a lack of communication. After more than one month I received a reply to my initial email saying the information was insufficient and that I had to contact my current supplier which was strange since Pure Planet IS my current supplier. I've subsequently found out that Pure Planet are NOT supplying my electricity but still charging me for it. I'm now being charged twice under two different meters by them and my previous supplier. I've decided to switch back to my last supplier and I've also cancelled my direct debit because if I wait for this to be sorted they will take at least three months worth of money that I can't afford since I'm paying two suppliers.
Userlevel 7
Badge +10
hi Laura1
​​​​​​​see my reply below- oops I mean above,, in addition if you hadn't switched PP would not have billed you.
Laura1;47420:
Hi @ Gray4276, It wasn't actually a switch as my previous supplier was still supplying my electricity and they have now amended the database. I'm just waiting for my gas which was fine to also revert back to the previous supplier. I found dealing with Pure Planet very frustrating and slow. I've basically done all the leg work, granted the wrong database wasn't their fault but I noticed it, raised the query, all they've managed to do is send me an email 6 weeks after giving them all the details saying they needed more information and that I needed to contact my current supplier. I was under the impression they were supplying my electricity and were not, but were happy to charge me for it which I find unacceptable. My account is in credit and I'm also due a refund for the electricity, knowing how they operate, it will probably take months for them to generate a final bill so I that's why I cancelled the direct debit.
Hi WOZ, I think I haven't explained myself properly. So when I switched to PP I provided them with both opening readings for gas & electricity but I noticed they used an estimated electricity reading which was so much higher than what I had given them, then I realised the Elect meter number on my account was wrong. I opened a complaint, after a few days I didn't hear back so I wrote a post on here then received an email advising me that according to the database the meter I'm saying belongs to me is linked to the maisonette below me. I was asked for a photo of the meter and to boil the kettle to see if the meter would change. I didn't bother to test it because the photo of the meter clearly states that my meter is for the upper floor with my plot number and the flat they're saying it was linked to is on the ground floor plus I've been paying for it for last 5 years. A few weeks later I received an email from a different person advising me that there is a discrepancy with my reading so I explained the issue all over again. Six weeks after sending the photo of my meter I received a response saying I had to boil the kettle and confirm that it's effectively my meter then tell my current supplier to update the database. I found that very confusing since as far as I was concerned PP IS my current supplier. I called my previous supplier who informed me they would correct the database in the next 10 days and that they're still supplying me with electricity. So at this stage only my gas had been switched but when I checked my PP bill I could see they have been charging me for electricity under the wrong meter and my previous supplier was charging for electricity me under the correct one. I agree the mistake on the database is not PP's fault and I didn't raise a complaint to be difficult but I thought that was the only way to contact them on their website. I found this process very frustrating and slow, furthermore if PP are aware they're not supplying me why are they charging me? I'm in the process of selling my flat so I need this to be sorted ASAP and from my dealings with PP it felt like it was going to drag on for a while so since my previous supplier is still supplying me with electricity under the correct meter it was easier to just switch my gas back to them. As mentioned in my last post, my account with PP is in credit by over £100 adding the refund from electricity, I can't afford for PP to keep taking my direct debit as I have no doubt this will take months to sort out and I will definitely be due a refund.
Userlevel 7
Badge +10
hi Laura
thanks for the explanation, I had a feeling there was more to this than met the eye and this is indeed now a complicated mess.
The first thing you MUST do is to physically identify which meter is connected to your flat. At this point I would certainly not assume anything and if for no other reason than to be sure it is actually connected to your property. If PP have switched the wrong meter, I'm sure they will refund you for all the electric charges.

However, I'm now confused, why didn't your previous (now current) supplier make the same error if it's wrong on the database - why would your previous supplier need to update the database if they have been using the correct meter for you for 5 years, does that not indicate that the database is or was correct when you joined them, or did they just hit lucky and chose the correct meter when they could have chosen either?
So in essence you THINK PP switched someone else's meter, in fact the person in the flat downstairs, presumably they would have had some sort of communication to say they were going to be switched? (do you know them to talk to?)
Had you asked PP I'm sure in the circumstances they would have suspended or reduced the DD.
I didn't think you raised a complaint to be difficult, It's just a pity you felt you had no other option but from what you say PP could have better explained things. They should have contacted you to explain that your electricity had not switched, (maybe they did?) but they may have assumed, possibly wrongly, that your current supplier also had the wrong meter which is why they asked you to contact the supplier (with what you assumed was incorrect wording but in fact the wording was correct because your first supplier was still in fact your current supplier as it hadn't switched. That's (possibly) where they went wrong - they should have explained that properly.
So in essence PP thought they had switched your electric but they switched your neighbour, and your previous supplier didn't get a switch request for the meter they were charging you for. but here's a question...why didn't your supplier inform you at the start that they had only switched your gas when they must have had a request to switch both but declined to do so because the meter number didn't match?
I think I'd be asking my previous supplier some questions...
Why would you change suppliers while selling the flat or did you start a long time before? That wasn't helpful sorry!

Laura1;47426:
Hi WOZ, I think I haven't explained myself properly. So when I switched to PP I provided them with both opening readings for gas & electricity but I noticed they used an estimated electricity reading which was so much higher than what I had given them, then I realised the Elect meter number on my account was wrong. I opened a complaint, after a few days I didn't hear back so I wrote a post on here then received an email advising me that according to the database the meter I'm saying belongs to me is linked to the maisonette below me. I was asked for a photo of the meter and to boil the kettle to see if the meter would change. I didn't bother to test it because the photo of the meter clearly states that my meter is for the upper floor with my plot number and the flat they're saying it was linked to is on the ground floor plus I've been paying for it for last 5 years. A few weeks later I received an email from a different person advising me that there is a discrepancy with my reading so I explained the issue all over again. Six weeks after sending the photo of my meter I received a response saying I had to boil the kettle and confirm that it's effectively my meter then tell my current supplier to update the database. I found that very confusing since as far as I was concerned PP IS my current supplier. I called my previous supplier who informed me they would correct the database in the next 10 days and that they're still supplying me with electricity. So at this stage only my gas had been switched but when I checked my PP bill I could see they have been charging me for electricity under the wrong meter and my previous supplier was charging for electricity me under the correct one. I agree the mistake on the database is not PP's fault and I didn't raise a complaint to be difficult but I thought that was the only way to contact them on their website. I found this process very frustrating and slow, furthermore if PP are aware they're not supplying me why are they charging me? I'm in the process of selling my flat so I need this to be sorted ASAP and from my dealings with PP it felt like it was going to drag on for a while so since my previous supplier is still supplying me with electricity under the correct meter it was easier to just switch my gas back to them. As mentioned in my last post, my account with PP is in credit by over £100 adding the refund from electricity, I can't afford for PP to keep taking my direct debit as I have no doubt this will take months to sort out and I will definitely be due a refund.
Hi WOZ, are you sure you don't work for PP.....LOL? Of course I didn't switch suppliers while in the process of selling my flat. I put it on the market after the switch went through not knowing it was going to turn into this shambles. When I bought the flat I stayed with the supplier I inherited cause I was happy with the service and the physical electricity meter matched the address, the bills and the plot number written on the purchase paperwork. So this is my first switch in this property after 5 years. I have done the kettle test and indeed a red light came on when it was boiling and went off when the kettle stopped. So I know I have been paying for the correct meter and it's wrong on my PP account.
I can't answer any of the points you've raised cause both suppliers failed to communicate anything with me. I had to find out everything by chance. The same day PP asked me to contact my previous supplier to update the database whilst referring to them as my "current supplier" was the same day my previous supplier asked me for my meter reading which I thought was strange as I assumed they were no longer supplying me, and I had previously asked for a final bill to which they said would take 28 days, but they then subsequently emailed me saying there was a delay I put down to PP contacting them about the confusion with the meters. So I wrongly thought PP were working on it.
My biggest issue with PP is I'm still not sure how to contact them on their website, at the moment I just reply to their initial email. But when I called my previous supplier it was instantly sorted, they admitted there was a mistake and assured me it would be corrected in 10 days and asked if I wanted to raise a complaint which I declined because I was so relieved to talk to someone who was proactive as opposed to PP who said it would take 12 weeks to sort any query. I understand these things can take a while but if I have to wait more than a month for a response to one email then we are talking months not weeks which I couldn't risk with my flat being on the market.
My regret was not calling my previous supplier when this happened but I assumed as I was no longer their customer they wouldn't be able to help.
So now the database has been corrected. The gas switch should take place next week, once done I'll contact PP with all the information to hopefully speed up the refund process. I'll just have to wait and see how long that's going to take???
Userlevel 7
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hi Laura
I don't, in fact if you read my posts I'm often critical (in a nice constructive way of course!)
I hope @Marc or @Nataly read this, I'm sure they will. What happened to you is a great example of poor or slow communication on the part of both companies.

I appreciate that it was initially impossible for PP to know that the switch was wrong, but having had it brought to their attention they could have been clearer and quicker at communicating. Their issue was they can only switch the meter they are told is yours, which is precisely what they did.

Your previous company should/will have contacted you after they received the request to switch saying we have received a request to switch G+E (I'm sure they must have?)
The problem there is often they don't switch together so it may not initially have been possible for them to know it had gone wrong.
It's frustrating that there doesn't seem to be a software trap to monitor dual fuel switches on accounts and apply a manual check after the switch date to ensure both supplies have switched. In the words of another community member "it isn't rocket science" (but it probably is and I absolutely hate that phrase, inevitably it's used by people who don't appreciate the issues involved.)
The system is great until something goes wrong, I can't help but feel that the industry generally needs better and clearer communication when issues are raised.
Anyway glad you're sorted (phew...) good luck with the sale, hope all goes smoothly, bubble wrap and newspaper at the ready....
Look on the bright side, imagine if you'd been paying for the wrong meter for 5 years...

Laura1;47446:
Hi WOZ, are you sure you don't work for PP.....LOL? Of course I didn't switch suppliers while in the process of selling my flat. I put it on the market after the switch went through not knowing it was going to turn into this shambles. When I bought the flat I stayed with the supplier I inherited cause I was happy with the service and the physical electricity meter matched the address, the bills and the plot number written on the purchase paperwork. So this is my first switch in this property after 5 years. I have done the kettle test and indeed a red light came on when it was boiling and went off when the kettle stopped. So I know I have been paying for the correct meter and it's wrong on my PP account.
I can't answer any of the points you've raised cause both suppliers failed to communicate anything with me. I had to find out everything by chance. The same day PP asked me to contact my previous supplier to update the database whilst referring to them as my "current supplier" was the same day my previous supplier asked me for my meter reading which I thought was strange as I assumed they were no longer supplying me, and I had previously asked for a final bill to which they said would take 28 days, but they then subsequently emailed me saying there was a delay I put down to PP contacting them about the confusion with the meters. So I wrongly thought PP were working on it.
My biggest issue with PP is I'm still not sure how to contact them on their website, at the moment I just reply to their initial email. But when I called my previous supplier it was instantly sorted, they admitted there was a mistake and assured me it would be corrected in 10 days and asked if I wanted to raise a complaint which I declined because I was so relieved to talk to someone who was proactive as opposed to PP who said it would take 12 weeks to sort any query. I understand these things can take a while but if I have to wait more than a month for a response to one email then we are talking months not weeks which I couldn't risk with my flat being on the market.
My regret was not calling my previous supplier when this happened but I assumed as I was no longer their customer they wouldn't be able to help.
So now the database has been corrected. The gas switch should take place next week, once done I'll contact PP with all the information to hopefully speed up the refund process. I'll just have to wait and see how long that's going to take???
Hi WOZ, WOW just seen the number of your posts, you seem to be a very patient individual.....LOL! Maybe you should work for PP???
I've just had an email from PP saying that since I've done the test and confirmed the meter, my previous supplier needs to update the database, they also asked me to confirm whether I still wanted to proceed with the switch of my gas and they will apply the electricity refund to my account. I think it's just unfortunate that the database was wrong and the fact that I'm in the process of selling my property meant it needed to be sorted very quickly which I managed to do by actually talking to someone on the phone. I hope this is my last post on this matter as unlike you I'm not patient and need to move on but thanks for the advice and support.☺

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