Rights and Responsibilities
You have the right to establish water service provided you meet these criteria:
- You properly complete the application process;
- DPU is not owed for previous utility service by you or anyone in your household;
- DPU is provided inside access to the premises to read the inside meter; and
- You agree to pay for all services received and to abide by the Utility’s Rules and Regulations.
Customers with no history or good payment history with DPU have the right not to pay a security deposit to secure utility service. However, for customers who have had a termination of service due to lack of payment or any involvement with water theft, a deposit will be charged. The deposit will be credited to the account once 12 months of full, on-time payments have been made thus re-establishing a good payment history.
You are responsible to make arrangements so that DPU receives full payment for utility bills by the due date shown on the utility bill. Customers who are unable to pay their utility bills on time are strongly encouraged to contact a Customer Service Representative at 419-245-1800 or in person at the Walk-in Center as soon as the financial difficulty occurs. Customer Service Representatives will provide guidance for how to best manage individual situations.
Although DPU bills most customers on a quarterly basis, customers have the right to make monthly payments in any amount if they prefer making smaller, more frequent payments for utility services so long as the total amount due is paid by the due date.
Customers are responsible to ensure that the numbers on the remote register (on the exterior of the building) match the numbers on the actual meter inside the dwelling by checking these readings once or twice a year and reporting any irregularities to DPU.
You have the right to phone in your meter reading to ensure you are paying for actual usage. Customers who receive an estimated bill always have the option to read their inside (actual) meter and call in the numbers to Customer Service who will reissue a statement based on actual water used.
You have the responsibility to pay for unbilled consumption (water that was used but not billed or paid for) which may occur when a remote meter is not working properly. A corrected bill will be issued to reflect your actual water usage based on the inside meter reading. Customers will also generally have the right to pay for such unbilled consumption over the same period of time that the consumption went unbilled. (All rights in this regard are forfeited in any case of water theft or meter tampering.)
You have the right and responsibility to request that DPU check its meter for accuracy and provide written test results if you suspect it is malfunctioning.
Property owners are responsible for the entire length of service pipe from the Curb Box into the structure, which also includes the shut-off valve, meter and the rest of the plumbing on private property. While water meters and remote registers are owned by DPU, property owners are responsible to see that meters do not freeze by providing adequate insulation if needed, and also by ensuring that they are not tampered with or damaged in any way.
You have the right to have Customer Service Representatives explain any aspect of your bill that you do not understand. This explanation may be limited to a reasonable period of time if other customers are waiting for access to Customer Service Representatives.
You have the right to be given written notice from DPU before your water service can be disconnected for non-payment. Such notice may be mailed to you or delivered to the service address by field personnel and placed on the front door of the structure.
Prior to a scheduled disconnection of water service, qualified customers have the right to apply for an Installment Payment Plan to pay off a delinquency. Installment plan participants do not receive monthly reminders and must remit the installment payment each month before the due date shown on the schedule provided to them. Failure to make any required installment payment when due and to make full payment on all normal monthly or quarterly bills will cause the installment plan to go into default. This will cause all delinquencies to be immediately due and payable. Installment Payment Plans may be offered to qualified customers once every two years.
Property owners who wish to discontinue utility services must contact DPU to:
- Schedule a final inside meter reading;
- Provide safe access to field personnel for meter-reading and infrastructure inspection; and
- Pay final bill(s) when rendered. Actual termination of utility services by the account holder will only occur upon receipt by Customer Service of evidence of a valid confirmation number. Otherwise, charges will continue to accrue and bills will continue to be issued on the active account until it is properly terminated. Regardless, please note that storm water charges will continue to be billed for all accounts.
Customers who question or dispute any charges on utility bills have the right to contact Customer Service for clarification or correction of disputed charges. If the dispute is not resolved by Customer Service, customers have the right to initiate an Appeals Process which requires written communication to the DPU Adjustment Committee within 30 days of the initial contact with Customer Service. Details regarding the Appeals Process are available online and by request from DPU Customer Service.