Utility Bill Assistance
Fix billing mistakes by learning about tariffs, fees, and rates. Answer questions such as, "How can I reduce or lower my utility bill?"
Need help paying your utility bill?
Please refer to Make a Payment Plan for a step-by-step instruction.
Fix a mistake on your utility or transportation bill
If you believe a utility, moving company, or “passenger carrier” (such as a limousine service, airport shuttle company, or charter bus company) has made a mistake on your bill, the CPUC can help you resolve the issue.
First, you need to contact the company directly. To contact an electric, gas, telephone, or water utility, use the customer service phone number printed on the front page of your bill. Be sure to have a complete copy of your bill in front of you.
If you cannot resolve the problem after talking with the company's customer service representative, please call us at the CPUC. We can walk you through the process of disputing a bill.
- For problems with energy, communications, or water utilities: 1-800-649-7570.
- For problems with moving companies: 1-800-366-4782.
- For problems with limousine services, airport shuttles, scheduled bus operators, or chartered bus operators: 1-800-894-9444.
Please be aware that the CPUC regulates privately owned electric, natural gas, telephone, water, and sewer utilities. Unfortunately, we cannot help you resolve issues with publicly owned or municipal utilities, such as SMUD or the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.
Tariffs, rates, and fees on a utility bill
The Commission, in Proceeding R.05-04-005, adopted regulations consistent with both statutory guidance and market conditions to rely more heavily on competitive forces to produce "just and reasonable" rates for California's telephone consumers. Though, basic services remain subject to tariff filing with the Commission, service providers may adjust rates in response to the market conditions, effective when filed.
Small, rural local exchange carriers are subject to regulations that minimize any basic telephone service rate disparity between rural and metropolitan areas. These companies are subject to stricter tariff review than are URF companies. For more information, see the California High Cost Fund-A page on the Commission's website.
Learn more about Uniform Regulatory Framework (URF) Carrier Basic Service Pricing Reports.
All local exchange service providers and many long-distance service providers file intrastate tariffs with the California Public Utilities Commission. Service providers file tariff changes by Advice Letter provided to the Communications Division. Information on Advice Letter filings is posted in the Commission's Daily Calendar. Please call your service provider to obtain current copies of their tariffs and Advice Letter filings.
The Communications Division does not maintain electronic copies of tariffs. However, some service providers may have tariffs posted on their web sites. Tariffs posted on utility web sites may not be those currently approved by the California Public Utilities Commission. Please verify with your service provider that any rate or charge you may find is currently authorized by the California Public Utilities Commission.
Links to Telecommunications Utility Web Sites
(Neither the California Public Utilities Commission nor the Communications Division of the California Public Utilities Commission guarantees or assures the accuracy of the tariffs filed on utility web sites below. They are provided for general information only and any rates, terms or conditions of service should be verified by directly contacting the utility.)
What is a PUC user fee?
Commission determines annually the appropriate CPUC fee to be paid by the telecommunications carriers. This fee is based on the telecommunications carrier's gross intrastate revenue excluding inter-carrier sales, equipment sales and directory advertising. The purpose of this fee is to finance the Commission's annual operating budget.
Lower your utility bills
There are two basic ways to save money by lowering a utility bill in California:
- Apply for discounted rates
- Conserve energy
Save money with discounted rates
Depending on your household income, you may qualify for discounted energy, telephone, or water services. Please review the information pages listed below to see if you qualify for our low-income programs. If you do, contact your utility to sign up!
- Save 20% on your energy bill: The CARE program provides a 20% discount on your energy bill.
- Lower the rate you pay for electricity: The Family Electric Rate Assistance (FERA) program bills some of your electricity at a lower rate.
- Get a discount on your telephone bill: The LifeLine program provides discounts for local home phone services and installation.
- Get a discount on your water bill: Several privately owned water companies provide discounted water services for consumers with limited household income.
Save money through conservation
You can also lower your monthly energy and water bills through conservation. For the services below, you can contact your utility for more information or to sign up.
- Reduce your energy usage: The Energy Savings Assistance Program helps consumers with limited household income reduce their monthly energy bills by providing attic insulation, energy efficient appliances, and other home improvements, at no cost.
- Rebates: Most energy utilities offer rebates to consumers who purchase energy-efficient appliances. Before you buy an appliance, call your utility to learn what rebates are available.
- Free Appliances: Most energy utilities offer free energy efficient appliances to consumers with limited household income.
- Water conservation: For more information on reducing your household water usage, you can see our Water Conservation Tips.