Hardship provisions for energy, water and rates

Essential services assistance for households and small businesses facing hardships will be extended from the energy and telecommunications sector to other services like water resources and local government.

24 April 2020

State and territory governments will work with the organisations supplying these services to apply the following principles, including:

  • Offering flexible payment options to all households and small businesses in financial stress – including small businesses eligible for the JobKeeper Payment
  • Not disconnecting restricting supply/services to those in financial stress
  • Deferring debt recovery proceedings and credit default listing
  • Waiving late fees and interest charges on debt, and
  • Minimising planned outages for critical works, and provide as much notice as possible to assist households and businesses during any outage.

Businesses eligible for the JobKeeper payment will automatically be considered to be under ‘financial stress’ for the purposes of accessing hardship arrangements.

Those who can continue to pay their bills need to keep doing so – this is critical to ensuring the ongoing viability of essential services providers. The measures provide an appropriate safety net for those in financial stress.

For more information: www.pm.gov.au