How to Register as an ESP

Public Utilities Code Section 394(a) defines an Electric Service Provider (ESP) as a non-utility entity that offers electric service to customers within the service territory of an electric utility. Subparagraph (b) requires each ESP to register with the CPUC and sets forth the requirements.

The CPUC implemented the framework for ESP registration, specifically applying these requirements to ESPs serving residential and small commercial (maximum peak demand less than 20 kilowatts) in Decision no. (D.)99-05-034 and (D.)98-03-072. In (D.)03-12-015, the CPUC extended these requirements to ESPs not previously required to register, as applicable.

  1. Execute a UDC-ESP Service Agreement with each Utility Distribution Company in which service territory you plan to offer service and submit copies of each executed Service Agreement with your application.
  2. Complete and return ESP Registration Application Form as modified in CPUC Decision no. (D.)03-12-015.
  3. Provide Fingerprints as prescribed for required personnel.
  4. Post a minimum security deposit of $25,000 in the form of either a cashier's check or a financial guarantee Bond with the CPUC at the time of registration. If submitting a cashier's check, please fill out and submit the Information Accompanying ESP Cash Deposit form at the time of registration.
  5. Prior to signing up and initiating a Direct Access Service Request on behalf of any customer, execute an agreement with a scheduling coordinator (SC) authorized by the Independent System Operator (ISO). Submit copies of all SC Agreements (waived for ESPs authorized as SCs).
  6. For ESPs offering electric service to residential or small commercial customers, submit a copy of your Section 394.5 Notice to the Energy Division of the CPUC on or before the date you sign up your first customer or when the first standard service plan filing is due, whichever is earliest.
  7. Note: Requirements for New ESPs: Resource Adequacy Requirements and Renewable Portfolio Standards Requirements.


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