{On April 9, 2020, BC Hydro also launched a COVID-19 Relief Fund. The application form for residential customers is now open. There is no rush to apply. Eligible customers can apply any time until June 30, 2020, to receive the credit. Learn more and apply. Applications for small businesses will be available the week of April 13, 2020. Learn about the COVID-19 Relief Fund for small businesses.}

BC Hydro has made some resources available to help alleviate financial stress during the COVID-19 pandemic. In today’s post, we are sharing information from BC Hydro about their Customer Crisis Fund (CCF). This fund provides access to grants of up to $600 for those who need help paying bills

Here are some details.

To qualify for the grantall of the following must apply: 

  • You must be a residential account holder, on your primary residence only. 
  • You must have an account facing disconnection, with overdue payments. 
  • You must have experienced a life event that caused a temporary financial crisis in the last 12 months. 

 A few other things to know: 

  1. You must have an outstanding account balance of $1000 or less. 
  2. You must have demonstrated attempts to make payments towards your bill. 
  3. The grant can only be applied once per year, per account holder.   

 How to apply: 

 Have your BC hydro account number and the personal information associated with the account on hand.  

  • You can apply online. 
  • You can submit a mailed application.  Ways to submit a hard copy here under “how to apply. 

 Other questions you may have about BC Hydro’s CFF: 

Does my income level affect my eligibility? 

  • No. BC Hydro’s CFF is available to all residential customers. The income qualifier (to elaborate on the above) is simply that you must be facing a temporary financial emergency 

Does the grant have to be paid back? 

  • No. The grant is applied directly to your account, against the balance, and you don’t need to pay it back. 

 A valuable resource is BC Hydro’s FAQ section for their Customer Crisis Fund. Check it out!  

 What else you should know: 

BC Hydro has also introduced a COVID-19 Customer Assistance Program. The program allows residential and commercial customers to defer bill payments or arrange flexible payment plans without penalty. You can call their customer service team to discuss your payment options. Contact info can be found here. 

 BC Hydro has ceased disconnections for non-payments. This means that if you get a call threatening disconnection, the call is a scam 

 Watch the COVID-19 customer update page on BC Hydro’s website for the most up-to-date information.   

 Did you like this? You might like these posts too! 

How to report COVID-19 price gouging 
COVID-19: how to request a deferral on your Autoplan payment plan
Take a look at all of our COVID-19 related information on our website

 Where do we fit in? 

Yes, we are a provincial regulator. We are responsible for some very specific transactions in BC. We aren’t experts on COVID-19. We won’t – and shouldn’t – ever give medical or legal advice. But we are in a unique circumstance right now and we want to help people navigate the current reality. We don’t have all the answers, but we will do our best to share information from reliable sources, put it in ways that are easy to digest and understand, provide referrals and help you navigate this situation. This is an evolving situation and information is changing all the time, so go to the source for updated information. 

About Consumer Protection BC 

We are responsible for regulating specific industries and certain consumer transactions in British Columbia. If your concern is captured under the laws we enforce, we will use the tools at our disposal to assist you. If we can’t help you directly, we will be happy to provide you with as much information as possible. Depending on your concern, another organization may be the ones to speak to; other times, court or legal assistance may be the best option. Explore our website at www.consumerprotectionbc.ca.