01.Origin Energy's not-so "discounted" energy prices
Origin Energy is facing Federal Court proceedings for allegedly making false or misleading representations, as well as for engaging in misleading or deceptive conduct, relating to the level of discount customers could receive on their energy usage.
The ACCC alleges that in early to mid-2013, Origin Energy made claims to its South Australian customers that, under its DailySaver energy plan, they would receive a discount on the energy charges they would otherwise pay to Origin.
However, even taking into account the discount on the plan, the price would still have been higher than the standard retail price required to be offered by Origin, according to the ACCC’s allegations.
A discount of up to 16% on electricity usage prices was offered by Origin, based on the ACCC’s allegations, which was in fact still about four per cent higher than Origin’s standard retail contract. And for natural gas, a discount of up to 12% was offered on the DailySaver plan, still about one per cent higher than the standard retail contract.
This is the second time the ACCC has begun proceedings against an energy retailer for misleading consumers about the level of discounts availble. The consumer watchdog is seeking redress for affected customers, financial penalties, declarations, injunctions, publication orders and a compliance program, as well as the reimbursement of costs.