Frequently Asked Questions: COVID-19 Billing

Why were late fees and disconnections suspended?

Randolph EMC voluntarily suspended late fees and the disconnection of electric service for non-payment for members impacted by COVID-19 beginning on March 17, 2020. This was in an effort to allow members additional time to pay their bill without their account being charged late fees or being disconnected.

On March 31, Governor Roy Cooper announced Executive Order 124, which mandated electric utilities to suspend late fees and disconnections for non-payment for 60 days. On May 29, Gov. Cooper extended this moratorium for 60 more days with Executive Order 142.

 

When does the Governor’s order to suspend late fees and disconnections expire?

Gov. Cooper’s Executive Order 142 expired July 29, 2020.

 

When will REMC begin charging late fees?

Randolph EMC is allowing an additional 30-Day grace period for members to return their account to good standing. This grace period surpasses the requirements of Executive Order 142. Late fees will be suspended until bills rendered in October become past due. FlexPay accounts are not subject to late fees.

 

When will REMC resume disconnections?

Randolph EMC is implementing a 30-day grace period on non-pay disconnections for members with past-due balances that accumulated between March 17 and July 29. Starting in September, traditional bills not paid by the due date will be subject to disconnection. FlexPay accounts will be subject to disconnection once the account balance reaches $0 beginning on September 1, 2020.

 

What are the options for members to pay past-due balances and avoid having their power disconnected?

Members who anticipate a problem paying the full amount of their past-due balance should contact Randolph EMC before August 31, 2020, to establish a payment plan for the balance accrued during the COVID-19 suspension.  

Traditional Accounts

Following the grace period, traditional accounts will have their past-due balance automatically enrolled in a COVID-19 Payment Plan of six equal monthly installments.  Alternatively, a member with a traditionally billed account may elect to switch to a FlexPay prepaid account. The past-due balance would then be transferred into a debt management plan that applies 30 percent of each payment toward the past-due balance. Any deposit on file for the account may be applied to the past due balance when converted to the FlexPay program.

FlexPay Accounts

Members who participate in the FlexPay prepaid electricity program will also have a grace period of 30 days to pay the amount accumulated during the COVID-19 suspension. On August 31, 2020, Randolph EMC will transfer any remaining past-due balance into a debt management plan that applies 30 percent of each payment toward the past-due debt.  

At this time, Randolph EMC will add $25 to the debt management plan, which will restart the account with a $25 credit balance. The account will then be subject to disconnection once the prepaid balance reaches $0.

If at any time, a member feels he or she will be unable to make an established installment payment, he or she must contact the cooperative before the next date of billing to make additional arrangements. For bills rendered after September 1, the current amount due must be paid in full in addition to the installment to avoid being subject to disconnection.

 

How long will I have to pay my past-due balance?

Most COVID-19 Payment Plans for traditional accounts will establish equal installments to be paid over six months. FlexPay debt management plans apply 30 percent of each payment made toward the past-due debt.  

 

What if I can’t pay the full installment amount listed on my COVID-19 Payment Plan?

The monthly payment amount will be included with current charges each month until satisfied or removed. For bills rendered after September 1, the current amount due must be paid in full in addition to the installment to avoid being subject to disconnection. It is the member’s responsibility to notify the cooperative as soon as possible to discuss amendments to their agreement. Failure to satisfy the terms of this agreement could result in disconnection.   

 

What if I’d like to pay more than the installment amount toward my past-due balance?

Randolph EMC would prefer that members with traditional accounts make additional past-due balance payments with the help of a member service specialist. Member service specialists may take payments over the phone with debit or credit cards or e-check or in person with cards, check or cash. They are available between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.

FlexPay members MUST contact a member service specialist to apply a payment toward their past-due balance.