Just Energy. Attempts to silence bloggers with legal action.
Posted by peeterjoot on June 15, 2011
I’d posted some of my thoughts about Just Energy Canada, after being thoroughly unimpressed with what seemed to me extremely unethical and coercive tactics.
I’d had a couple comments on that post by an individual that turned out to be the key to getting the contract cancelled (a contract renewal that I didn’t know I had, and had never received a copy of, nor any confirmation of renewal). That individual says he is now being threatened with legal action by this company, and has asked for his posts to be removed. Since I was aided by what he had to say, and the links that had been provided, I think that these comments are worthy of being retained, so I’m now re-posting them anonymously for all to see. They are now deleted from the comments in my original blog post.
You didnt have to pay them if you moved to a new location where the company doesn’t service or you moved to a location where you are NOT responsible for paying your utility (your name is not on the utility bills).
They don’t tell you this and send you straight to collection because it’s easy $450. Same thing happened with my relative, they sold their home, they moved to a small apartment. They no longer responsible for their utility, their landlord was. They paid $600 to Universal Energy (now Just Energy) for cancellation. That’s why the company is doing this, easy money with uninformed customers.
I would send a complaint letter to the local government regulator, tell them your story. If you don’t complaint, no one would know, the government regulator can’t keep track of the trend if no one complaint and no one will know what kind of company Just Energy really is.
Read more about how to cancel Just Energy, and you don’t have to pay a cent. Also here is a list of local government energy regulators to file your complaint, please file your complaint so your friends, family and neighbors do not have to waste time with this garbage.
My response to this was:
Thanks for the tips (I can’t take advantage of the non-proximity tip since I still live close to my old house and continue to be serviced by Enbridge gas).
I will definitely send a complaint letter to the Ontario Energy Board. I’ve informed just energy that I intend to do so.
Imagine an honest version of the Just Energy door to door salesman:
– Sign up with us, and you’ll never receive any information letting you know if you are actually saving money, or even breaking even.
– Should you move, despite your old gas bill being paid in full, and the account closed, we will then send collection agencies after you for exorbitant contract breaking fees.
– We won’t attempt to supply you with any information saying that there is a contractual obligation to continue using our company as a distributor. We prefer to send collection agencies first.
– Our company is inept. Should you have a contract dispute, we will take a month and a half to mail you a copy of the contract so that you can verify that there was in fact a legally binding agreement.
– We also cannot email documents in less than two weeks, and have to be called repeatedly to attempt to get us to do so. We will also initially deny that we can even email documentation. We will loose requests to surface mail it, so you’ll have to call us many times, and spend hours on the phone with us.
– Should you separate with your spouse, we will add to your grief. We don’t know anything about compassion, and at a time when you already have enough stress, we consider it our job to add to it. Instead of cancelling a contract associated with a pre-marital home we require one of the former spousal partners to assume contract associated with a house that neither party even lives in anymore.
– Should you actually insist on terminating the distribution agreement, we will then let you know that a variable rate agreement is possible. Of course we prefer to price gouge at inflated fixed rates, so this will not be advertised or made known, except as a last resort to keep collecting money from you.
He also wrote:
I was browsing your homepage and all I can see are calculations and equations. Then all of sudden there is a single post on top about Just Energy. You really hate these guys and I can’t blame you, there are many good reasons to hate Just Energy.
Yup, if they start to be upfront with homeowners, they won’t be where they are today, $2 billion cooperation. They understand not a lot of folks know about regulation on gas and electricity and that is what they are taking advantage of. Misinformed people and you’re absolutely right, Just Energy doesn’t care about their customers.
Just last year they changed their name to Just Energy, before that it was Ontario Energy Savings, Alberta Energy Savings and down the states it was US Energy Savings.
Ontario Energy Board? Ontario Energy Savings? Which one is a private company and which one is a real government body? Even the name is a scam, and who approved this? Hmmm…
Their former names imply some kind of government affiliation and the name Energy Savings imply savings, but that’s not true.
The only time Just Energy will contact you is through the (misleading) door-to-door sale about “energy savings” and then the follow up call to reaffirm over the phone after 10 days. After that you won’t ever hear from them again. No thank you package for joining, no mail telling you any information and when you move go talk to their collection. Gee I wonder why people hate them.
Just look at their own website, I think its Justenergy.com and you won’t find any information about the rates and different prices comparing their rates vs the local utility. After all, gas and electricity are their main products. The company argues it is so hard for them because gas and electricity prices change every day. That’s true but why are there other providers selling the exact same thing with their rates on their websit?
Oh I can go on and on …
To which I said
Changing names quickly is another form of misdirection. The company probably builds up negative feedback and routinely changes names to help minimize the damage.
I wouldn’t say that I hate them, but I do hate having been dumb enough to have been exploited by them. Having had that happen, I’ll not hesitate to make my story available. Perhaps I can help at least one other person avoid the same thing.
As you pointed out my single rogue post on this company along with the rest of my math and physics and computer programming obscurity will likely go unnoticed.
My off the cuff remark about the company changing names periodically is speculation. I don’t know if this has actually happened.