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Forum Post: Occupy Florida Power & Light -- Next Era Engery

Posted 6 years ago on Feb. 5, 2012, 2:02 p.m. EST by RepublicanForSinglePayer (8)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

FPL is engaging in a predatory and unconscionable practice against their financially distressed customers.

If you call FPL and ask for a payment extension, they will grant it. Then they will use the fact that you are financially stressed to demand you prepay several months of electric usage in advance. This is how they "help" you. They are doing this to all Floridians, they did it to me.

Occupy Florida Power & Light !



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[-] 1 points by JPB950 (2254) 6 years ago

You call them and say you can't pay, so they allow you to pay late. Now that you have established that you're unable to pay for their product you're actually surprised that they want money up front for something that you take, use, and they can't get back?

I can see where this would be upsetting to the consumer faced with a financial crisis, but it hardly seems predatory or excessively unreasonable. It seems more like the company is trying to protect it's interests. Do you consider it predatory if a car dealership won't give you a car you can't afford or the supermarket won't let you walk away with food and not pay?

[-] 1 points by gestopomillyy (1695) 6 years ago

of course it is predatory. just like charging people with low credit scores more for financial services, how does i make sense to know someone has no money and then say give me more of the money you do not have? in this instance.. a person has no money to pay the light bill.. and its logical to assume they will barely be able to pay the next one. sooo you say.. ok pay this late.. but add in 3 months worth of something you may or may not use in the next payment.. would you give the gorocery store and extra 100 on the off chance you would be back to buy more groceries? would that be predatory?

[-] 1 points by JPB950 (2254) 6 years ago

A grocery is different, you pick up what you want, pay and leave, if you don't have the money you don't get the item in the first place. The product a utility provides is consumed before it's paid for. When they believe you're not going to pay it seems legitimate to require some kind of deposit. Landlords typically do the same thing, you pay first and last month's rent up front and sometimes a security deposit too.

I can see the practice as protectionist, maybe cold and calculating, but not predatory. Deposits used to acquire interest while being held by utilities, and you do get your money back when you discontinue the service.