If I file bankruptcy in Arizona will they turn off my power?
If you are getting calls from the utility company for past due bills you may wonder how bankruptcy will affect those services. Will my utility company be mad at me for filing bankruptcy? Will they turn of my electricity, water, gas and telephone?
No! There are certain restrictions on utility service providers that restrict their ability to terminate services if you file bankruptcy. First off, it is important to define what is considered a utility service. Generally utility services include electricity, water, natural gas, and telephone. Cable television services are not considered utilities, nor are internet services.
In general the Arizona bankruptcy code does not allow utilities to alter, refuse or discontinue your services just because you have filled bankruptcy or your pre-petition utility bills have not been paid. This means that if you file bankruptcy they cannot cut your services. However, the law says that utility companies are entitled to assurance that they will be paid for future services they provide after your bankruptcy is complete. Accordingly, utility companies are entitled to receive a “security deposit” within 20 days of your bankruptcy. Common, acceptable payments of the “security deposit” include: a cash deposit, a letter of credit, prepayment, or another form of security.
It is important to know that if you do NOT comply with this requirement the utility company may then alter, refuse or discontinue your service.
Once your Arizona bankruptcy is complete a utility company may not hold the bankruptcy against you. This means they cannot try to charge you higher rates for these services, besides being able to ask for a deposit when you sign up for services. Also you should know that you can discharge your unpaid utility bills in the bankruptcy process. Contact a Tucson bankruptcy attorney today in order to find out about your case specifically.