NorthWestern Energy is warning that scammers are likely to use the end of the temporary moratorium on service disconnections to steal money from Montanans.
NorthWestern Energy voluntarily stopped service disconnections for non-payment in March to assist customers financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Several additional tools are in place now to assist customers who may be struggling to pay their energy bills. For the safety of our employees, customers and communities, NorthWestern Energy’s walk-in offices remain closed, however, the customer associates from those offices are assisting customers over the phone. Any customer concerned about their ability to pay their energy bill should contact NorthWestern Energy right away.
“NorthWestern Energy notified the Montana Public Service Commission that service disconnections will resume for the small percentage of accounts with past due balances who have not responded to multiple requests to contact us to make payment arrangements,” said NorthWestern Energy Vice President Customer Care, Communications and Human Resources Bobbi Schroeppel. “Unfortunately, we know from the experience of other energy providers nationwide and in Montana that opportunist criminals may try to take advantage of people now.”
Here are warning signs that you may be the target of a scam:
- Threat: NorthWestern Energy never contacts any customer threatening service disconnection if a payment is not made immediately.
- Unexpected: NorthWestern Energy provides multiple notices, such as phone calls, mail and door hangers, over several weeks to customers with past-due accounts. A service disconnection is completed only after a customer receives several notifications.
- Surprise: Customers with past due balances continued to receive notices from NorthWestern Energy throughout the temporary moratorium on service disconnections voluntarily put in place in March. NorthWestern Energy customers with past-due bills will not be surprised by a notice.
- Afternoon, Friday or holiday: NorthWestern Energy does not do service disconnections: after noon; on Fridays; the day before or during holidays.
If you think you are being contacted by a scammer, hang up, delete the email and call NorthWestern Energy at 888-467-2669.
NorthWestern Energy has extended options for customers with past due balances, including longer terms for payment plans. Our customer associates can also provide referrals to organizations that provide assistance for energy services.
More information on payment options is available at northwesternenergy.com.