OVO announces £50m hardship scheme for customers

OVO customers experiencing extreme financial difficulties as a result of the coronavirus will be able to access the OVO Coronavirus Hardship Scheme to help them through the outbreak, the company announced today. 

The UK’s largest independent energy supplier is planning to make up to £50m worth of measures available to existing customers through its Coronavirus Hardship Scheme. Eligible customers will be able to receive this support from Wednesday 8th April 2020. 

The profound impact of the coronavirus is putting many families and households into financial difficulty. Keeping all customers on supply when they cannot pay in the longer-term needs an industry-wide solution, which energy suppliers and Ofgem are currently working on and may take time. In the meantime, OVO’s hardship scheme is there to help customers that need it most.

OVO customers who are most in need and eligible for support will be able to contact customer services directly for either emergency top-up credit or temporary payment reductions to their monthly payments. If the application is accepted, support will then be made available for an initial period of up to three months.

With the entire country working together to support the most vulnerable during  the pandemic, OVO is urging only those customers with real and immediate need to apply. This will ensure the credit can be made available as quickly as possible together with a plan to pay it back over a manageable period.  

Stephen Fitzpatrick, OVO CEO and Founder said:

“Now, in addition to the health impacts of coronavirus, financial hardship for many of our customers is setting in. This hardship scheme will provide some immediate support for those most impacted by coronavirus.

“OVO is also working with other energy companies and Ofgem to develop a sustainable long-term position for all customers. This plan will take some time to put into action. In the meantime, we are doing what we can to give reassurance and support to our customers.

“It is essential we find a way to keep the lights on in every home in Britain in the coming months.”

To ensure existing customers are able to access the scheme first, only those who were an OVO customer on 1st March 2020 are able to apply. Customers should not contact OVO now, but should wait until the scheme is open on Wednesday 8th April 2020.

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