Q:

How do you find assistance with paying your electric bill?

A:

Quick Answer

The federal government provides funding for states to help local citizens with energy bills through its Low-Income Energy Assistance Program. You can visit the energy assistance page at Benefits.gov to see if your state participates in the program. Some local utility companies have programs that refer customers to funding sources, and utility companies often offer alternative payment arrangements to ease the burden of paying a large bill. Your state power utility commission might also have several resources listed online.

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Full Answer

If you meet the criteria for participating in the LIHEAP program offered by your state, you'll be able to get some financial assistance with paying energy bills. To qualify, you must be a resident of the state earning an income that falls within program guidelines. Generally, low-income households with a certain number of family members are considered for eligibility, and one household member must receive government benefits such as food stamps or supplemental security income. Alternatively, find out if your local utility company offers a hardship fund program that provides cash assistance to customers who have no other resources.

Utility companies are often willing to work with customers who are struggling to make bill payments. You can contact your utility company and ask to set up a payment plan, or request an extension of the payment due date.

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