The priority services register can help to make your life easier if you are looking after your parent’s home, or organising their utility bills (register below using code 017).
The priority services register entitles utility customers to free support services. In the UK, national regulators (OfGem, Ofwat and UKRN) require all utility suppliers and network distribution companies to give special priority to any potentially vulnerable consumers by developing and maintaining a Priority Services Register (PSR).
Eligibility for the Priority Services Register
It’s almost certain that your parents will be eligible for the PSR - but you, or others that you know might also be eligible. It is not means tested and is for anyone who:
- is of pensionable age
- is disabled or chronically sick
- has a long-term medical condition
- has a hearing or visual impairment or additional communication needs
- is in a temporary or ongoing vulnerable situation (this covers a wide range of circumstances such as an accident, periods of physical or mental illness, being a carer or living with pre school children)
The PSR can help you and your parents
Registering for priority services can make life simpler and safer for you and your relative(s).
The benefits to being on the PSR include:
- nominee schemes allowing customers to send communication, such as bills, to another nominated person
- advance warning of any supply interruptions;
- priority support in emergencies;
- bills and other literature in accessible formats
- doorstep identification schemes for engineers –this usually entails a password system to identify legitimate callers and is likely to include “knock and wait” arrangement to give you time to get to the door
- moving customer meters to more accessible areas (if appropriate)
Priority support in an emergency can be especially important for anyone who relies on electricity to operate a stair lift, breathing apparatus or other medical or monitoring equipment. If suppliers or network operators know about the risks, then they might even make alternative arrangements such as organising a temporary electricity generator.
More people could benefit from enrolling for priority services
Despite the benefits and concerted efforts to promote the PSR, studies around the country show that only around 30% of those eligible for the PSR are accessing the scheme, and in some areas the levels are much lower.
You can apply to the PSR on your parent’s behalf.
Fill in the registration form here using code 017
Each energy supplier and network operator has their own PSR and the available support services can vary.
Be reassured that these companies and the national regulators ensure that all information is collected and stored according to the highest possible standards of data protection.
If you live in the North East or Yorkshire you can register directly using this link and the code 017.
Elsewhere in the country you will need to contact the relevant energy or power network or supplier.