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Utility Payment Plans

Authored By: Iowa Legal Aid
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Information about Utility Payment Plans

"My electric or natural gas utilities just got shut off or will be shut off because I am behind on payments.  Can I get a payment plan?"

The utility company must offer you a first, reasonable payment agreement that is at least 12 months long if:

  • You have not already defaulted on a payment agreement, and 
  • You have been disconnected for fewer than 120 days.

The utility company must offer you a first, reasonable payment agreement that is at least 6 months long if:

  • You have not already defaulted on a payment agreement, and
  • You have been disconnected for more than 120 days.

If you default on your first payment agreement, the utility company must offer you a second, 6 month payment agreement if:

  • You made at least two back-to-back payments on your first payment agreement.
  • The second payment agreement must be as long or longer than your first agreement.

The monthly payment agreement amounts toward the past due balance must be equal. 

  • The agreement also requires that you pay your current bill in addition to the payment on the past due amount. 
  • The utility can charge a reconnect fee. 
  • If the utility refuses to give you a payment agreement, you can talk to the Iowa Utilities Board by calling (877)-565-4450. 
  • You cannot be disconnected while the Board reviews your case.
Last Review and Update: Jun 26, 2015
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