FAQ’s for Billing During Storm-Related Outages
Please browse the following frequently asked
Why doesn’t my bill reflect my power outage?
There are several possible explanations of why
your bill may not appear to account for time your
power was off:
- Estimated Meter Reading: Following
Hurricane Sandy, all employees, including meter
readers, were reassigned to restoration duty. If
your meter was scheduled to be read in early to
mid-November, your meter was not read and the
bill was estimated based on your typical usage
and the weather at this time of year and will
not reflect a power outage. Rest assured that
your next actual meter reading will account for
any time that your power was out and you will be
charged only for the amount of electricity you
have used since your previous actual meter
reading. If the actual meter reading is lower
than the estimated reading, your charges will be
- Balanced Billing Customers: Your
monthly installments are based on your average
usage over the previous year. You may not see
any difference in your monthly installment until
your account is reviewed at the next actual
meter reading. Even a multi-day power outage
might have a minimal impact on your installment.
If you would like to provide an actual meter
reading for a possible adjustment now, please
call in your reading to us at 1-800-490-0025.
- Actual Meter Reading: If your bill is
based on an actual meter reading, then your bill
does reflect the actual amount of electricity
you used since your last meter reading, and
already accounts for any time that your power
was out. Your electric meter will not record any
electricity usage during a power outage.
Meter reading tips and an instructional video
are available here.
Why was my bill estimated after the storm?
Meter reading was suspended for several weeks
because all of our employees, including meter
readers, were reassigned to storm restoration duty.
As a result, if your meter was scheduled to be read
in early to mid-November, your meter was not read
and your bill was based on an estimated meter
reading. Be assured that your electric meter will
indicate no usage during a power outage and your
next actual meter reading will reflect only the
total amount of electricity you have used. You have
the option to provide an actual reading to us by
calling 1-800-490-0025 for a possible adjustment to
your bill now. Please note, you should only call if
your actual reading is lower than the estimated
reading on your bill.
reading tips and an instructional video are
What should I do if my
bill has a message requesting that I provide access
to my meter?
You may disregard any message or fee on your bill
related to meter access. We have suspended
charging all fees related to meter non-access
through at least January 31, 2013 and have already
reversed any fees applied since October 29th.
You may either wait for your next scheduled actual
meter reading date, which you can find above the
“Billing Summary” on your bill, or submit a meter
reading to us by calling 1-800-490-0025. Click
for meter reading tips, including an instructional
What should I do if my home/business will be
unoccupied for an extended period of time?
Some customers along the south shore of Long
Island and the Rockaway Peninsula are currently
unable to have power restored because of extensive
flood damage. If you will not be occupying your home
or business for an extended period of time, please
call us at 1-800-490-0025 and we will close your
account until you are ready to have service
How are bills being
handled in severely flooded areas?
Due to the devastating effects of Hurricane Sandy,
LIPA stopped sending bills for electric service
by mail to the severely flooded areas on the
south shore of Long Island and the Rockaway
Peninsula*. While we have resumed regular
billing for most of our customers, we will continue
to hold bills for those customers who remain without
electric service due to flood damage.
If you received a bill with a date for
the time period beginning the
last week of October through late November, you
may disregard the due date and any bill message
related to meter access. Late payment charges
and meter non-access fees will not be applied
through at least January 31, 2013.
For customers who remain without service: Online
versions of bills that were not mailed are available
for viewing in “My Account.” Please disregard
the due date on any bill issued after Hurricane
Sandy, since we have stopped assessing late payment
charges as noted above. If you have not
already done so, please contact us about having
* Communities where mailed bills were stopped after
Sandy: Amityville, Arverne, Atlantic Beach, Baldwin,
Bay Shore, Bayport, Belle Harbor, Bellmore,
Brightwaters, Cedarhurst, East Islip, East Rockaway,
Far Rockaway, Ft. Tilden, Inwood, Island Park,
Islip, Lawrence, Long Beach, Lynbrook, Massapequa,
Massapequa Park, Mastic Beach, Merrick, Oakdale,
Oceanside, Point Lookout, Rockaway Beach, Rockaway
Point, Sayville, Seaford, Shirley, Wantagh, West
Islip, and West Sayville.
Can customers who are recovering from flooding
get a discount on their electricity?
In limited circumstances, assistance may be
available. Customers who participate in FEMA’s
Sheltering and Temporary Essential Power (STEP)
Program in Nassau or Suffolk County and who have
temporary electric baseboard heating installed can
qualify for LIPA’s electric heating rate. Portable
space heaters do not qualify for this rate. To
participate in STEP, first register with FEMA by
calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or online at
Any customer who is experiencing financial
difficulties can contact our Customer Assistance
Center at 1-800-490-0025. We will work with you on a
payment agreement that fits your budget and we can
refer you to financial assistance resources. LIPA
does offer a discounted Household Assistance Rate
for customers who receive assistance from the
following programs: Public Assistance, Medicaid,
Food Stamps, Supplemental Security Income (SSI),
Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP), Veteran’s
Disability Pension, Veteran’s Surviving Spouse
Pension, and Child Health Plus. Call us or visit
www.lipower.org/HAR for more information.
Will LIPA reimburse me for spoiled food or
damages to my property resulting from outages?
LIPA is not liable for food spoilage or damage
to customer property resulting from outages caused
by issues beyond its immediate control. That
includes acts of nature such as Hurricane Sandy.
Assistance may be available
Check the coverage of your homeowner’s
- Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
/ Federal Aid
Residents and businesses in disaster-impacted
areas of New York, who have disaster-related
losses not covered by insurance, can apply now
for federal disaster assistance through FEMA.
There are three ways to apply:
For additional information you can also visit
FEMA’s Hurricane Sandy website for New York here.
How is the Demand Charge assessed during the
Like the basic service charge, demand charges are
calculated to reflect the total number of days in
the billing period. No reductions will be factored
in for days when service was not available because
of storm-related service outages.