Hassled for Debt even after Payment Plan in place

Userlevel 2

Hassled for Debt even after payment plan agreed


Having received a bill for just short of £400, I asked to set up Fuel Direct payments to be deducted from my Benefits. SSE had done this previously, with no issue.
The advisor stated that they would take no less than £40 per week from my benefit , which is over 20% of my income, but as I felt I had no choice, I agreed to this.
Even though this has been set up, and I've received confirmation from the DWP, OVO still hassle me for the debt and have threatened to send the bill to the Debt Collectors.
Their colleague stated on the phone previously that it would be "normal" to still receive a demand for the amount even after setting up Benefit Deductions (which is peculiar), but I didn't expect it to be to this degree.
My monthly bill is around £60 a month, so I do not see how they can justify an ongoing payment of £160 per month towards my account; note that the deductions do not cease once the bill is in credit, but merely continue, so my OVO bill is looking to be in credit by an additional £90 a month, after the monthly charges have been paid.  (Obviously, after the debt has been paid, but that’ll be paid in no time at this rate) That's over a £1000 a year. OVO said I can "claim back any credit due" but that is not the point. SSE never took more than around £10 a week from me so I do not se how OVO can justify over 4 times that amount.
Also, they failed to pay me my Warm home discount this year, which would have helped with the bill.

Once the debt is paid, I'm definately leaving OVO. Their business practices are questionable and their call centres are a joke, with inadequate staff on the phones.


It’s only fair to inform you dear readers that:

 The above was placed on TrustPilot, thinking that OVO would make a public response to the issue. However, having read the standard cut and paste  answer to all compaints on the site of “Please contact us at *edited by moderator* (i.e. the OVO forum, OVO obviously too shy to talk outdoors)”, I thought I’d save OVO the trouble of the invitation to the Forum and beat them to it by posting this here today. 🤓

15 replies

Userlevel 7
Badge +1

You need 0800 069 9831 for this. Forum Volunteers like myself aren’t authorised to access accounts. That number goes to the Collections Team, they can help with debt collection stuff.

It also seems like your Trustpilot review got killed by the looks of things. Please do not ask me why, I can’t tell you about things that Trustpilot does.

Userlevel 2

Hi, thanks for the reply.

I’ve already emailed OVO the details of the complaint. The post was more to let others out there know what my experience with OVO was.



Userlevel 7
Badge +1

In that case… Probably worth mentioning that this thread will likely just get merged and naturally sink into nothing. People don’t tend to search this forum and are unlikely to find this again.

Userlevel 2

Well, as they say, that’s the way the 🍪 crumbles. If one person has seen it, i.e. your good self, that’s fine by me. 



Userlevel 7
Badge +1

I see many things. And I reply to just about every thread that gets posted here.

Unfortunately however - and this is nothing against you - I’ll eventually just forget that you were ever here when I get distracted by the sea of questions posted every day.

Userlevel 7
Badge +1

One last thing. I’ve checked that short link and it seems like it’s actually intended to come here because the post it goes to provides easy access to all contact options. Usually I’m pretty rapid on the Flag button (and admittedly in this case too but it’s an easy two click job to cancel) because 99% of the time, someone who is posting short links is linking to dodgy stuff.

Some of the current Social Media Team (including those on Trustpilot) have, at one stage or another, been a Forum Moderator on the OVO Forum. Pretty much all of those staff know me from their time here and I think I’ve figured out what’s going on with that.

I will discuss that backstage with the current forum moderators when I get chance. I think there’s a way that the post being linked to can be improved a bit to clarify where to go if you land on it from Trustpilot.

Userlevel 7
Badge +2

Interesting looking at other suppliers.... 

For example 

"any debt action on your account will stop" 

Personally i think OVO  actions are unacceptable in this case.

This is a person who has agreed to a payment plan.  Why put them under more pressure than they are already under. 

Shame on OVO, in my humble opinion.... 

British Gas update the account status in 24 hours

How about changing your process OVO to do the same? 

If this is normal business practice for OVO, then I think you are right in thinking about leaving OVO.

I have added an idea in case anyone else also feels strongly and would like to vote for it

Also shameful OVO didn't sort out your warm home discount given the Fuel Direct application. A number of ex SSE customers have had this issue. In your situation it is very poor OVO hasn't picked this up and sorted it asap during any review for the Fuel Direct plan and other options of support you may be entitled to. The Fuel Direct scheme is meant to be one of the last resorts. 


Userlevel 6

Hi @benbrownboy 


I’m really sorry to hear about everything that’s going on with this at the moment, that’s really not the experience we set out for our customers to have.


I’ve linked to our really helpful toolkit so you can take a look around and see what additional help you may be entitled to through us, https://winter-support-package.ovoenergy.com/


I’m going to have our Forum_Support reach out to you personally to see what they can do help you further with this.

Userlevel 7
Badge +2


Keep an eye out here for a message  following the post from @Abby_OVO 


If you post how you get on i am sure it will help other customers. 

Userlevel 2

“I’ve linked to our really helpful toolkit so you can take a look around and see what additional help you may be entitled to through us, https://sites.google.com/ovo.com/vulnerabilitytoolkit/home.”

Unfortunately, this link is dead. I even removed the Google Url  part (I think these are the remnants of an internal/old URL?) but still had no luck .

I did some digging on the t’internet. The only information I could find was a  “Good Practice Guide” in 2022 from Energy-UK in which it states that OVO have recently actioned the Vulnerability Toolkit and that they have “over 1500 users”. 

But I cannot find it!  It sounds extremely interesting, so I hope you can point us all in the right direction.




Userlevel 7
Badge +1

That’s actually a Google Sites website, which is part of Google Workspace. The link is valid, however it’s got an access restriction. In these cases, it just pretends that the content doesn’t exist unless you’re allowed to view it. Google is really good at doing that.

I used to be a Super Admin for another Google Workspace domain, so I know this stuff well.

In this case, the link looks like one that’s for the employee only OVO Net. It can’t be accessed by anyone else, forum volunteers don’t get special access either.

Another example, there’s a special version of Google Maps at https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.google.android.apps.gmm.qp . But it’s restricted access. If you don’t have permission to use it, you get a faked 404 error that pretends there’s nothing there. If you do have permission to use it, then the link works as expected and reveals the app.

Userlevel 6

@benbrownboy apologies for that, I’ve updated my previous post with the correct link.


You should have received a Direct Message from the Forum_Support team, they’ll be in touch soon with what they can do to support you further. 

Userlevel 7
Badge +5

Looking at the OVO site, I get a broken link message but there is this searching for similar things 



Edit - Abby found the right page (link above)

Userlevel 2

Just a heads up. Irrespective of the numerous assurances from OVO that collection and demand action would cease following the Fuel Direct payment agreement, I continue to receive numerous text messages demanding that i pay the debt of in full as soon as possible and as recent ago as the 26th August, one email of a continual stream in which OVO threaten to add "extra charges" (they've been charging me a £10 late fee, even though the DWP pay them every month without fail), along with the threat of a default on my file.


Empty promises? Mistakes? Or just plain lies? Who knows? 

Userlevel 7

Hey @benbrownboy,


Really sorry to hear this, it sounds very stressful.


I’d advise contacting the Collections Team who are responsible for chasing arrears balances. It sounds like a hold wasn’t added to your account for these kind of communications following the fuel direct agreement. 


You can call them directly on 0800 069 9831. They’re open Monday to Friday 9am-5pm.


Hope this helps.