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These Regulations deal with the sharing of data between the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions and certain electricity suppliers. The purpose of the data share is to match certain state pension credit (“SPC”) recipients who on 26th March 2010 are in receipt of guarantee credit (but not savings credit) with the domestic customers of those suppliers. This is to enable identification of those persons who are eligible for financial assistance towards their electricity bill in accordance with a support scheme established pursuant to arrangements made between the Secretary of State and the electricity suppliers. The suppliers will use the information to provide assistance, for instance by means of a credit to the customers’ electricity account, and then to contact those customers with a view to providing them with energy efficiency measures that could assist their household in becoming more energy efficient.
Regulation 2 contains interpretation provisions.
Regulation 3 defines an electricity supplier.
Regulation 4 defines “relevant SPC claimants” about whom the Secretary of State may disclose the information listed in regulation 5 to an electricity supplier.
Regulation 5 permits the Secretary of State (or her service provider) to disclose to electricity suppliers certain types of social security information about relevant SPC claimants for the purpose of identifying and assisting individuals who qualify for financial assistance towards their electricity bill under the energy rebate scheme. Once it has been determined that individuals will receive an automatic credit to their electricity bill, the electricity suppliers may use the disclosed information to contact those individuals with a view to offering (a) to deliver various energy efficiency measures, and (b) to place them on a register for priority services.
Regulation 6 allows an electricity supplier to disclose to the Secretary of State (or her service provider) the names and addresses of its domestic customers and which of those customers are already in receipt of a discounted tariff. This is for the purpose of helping the Secretary of State (i) to ascertain the number of persons who may be eligible for an automatic award, (ii) to identify which of those customers are relevant SPC claimants who may qualify for an automatic award, and (iii) to provide each electricity supplier with a list of its customers who are such claimants and may qualify for an automatic financial award and the information referred to in regulation 5.
Regulations 7 and 8 create offences for improper use of information that has been disclosed, as well as setting out defences that may be available.
An impact assessment has not been produced for this instrument as no impact on the private or voluntary sector is foreseen.
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