Business Energy Claims success: global energy supplier found liable in landmark case

Business Energy Claims has helped to recover thousands of pounds for a small amusement arcade business, after leading energy supplier Engie was found liable in a ground-breaking legal case.

The business operating as “Queenie’s Casino Slots” (Queenie’s) was awarded more than £10,000 from the global supplier following a court claim brought by energy litigation experts, Business Energy Claims (BEC).

And now, North Tyneside-based BEC is urging businesses and other non-domestic users of energy such as charities, sports and social clubs and places of worship to check whether they may have been misled and mis-sold energy contracts amid fears many won’t realise they have been targeted.

It is believed that the amount of mis-sold energy contracts entered into by non-domestic energy users via unregulated energy brokers totals around £2.25bn each year. BEC chiefs, based on reports from UK energy regulator Ofgem, say that around 2-3 million businesses and many thousands of other non-domestic users of energy across the UK secured their energy via an energy broker.

This week’s groundbreaking ruling comes amid a growing scandal which highlights energy brokers and energy suppliers frequently omitted to disclose broker commissions made on the contracts which are then unknowingly paid by businesses and other organisations affected. 

The court found a conflict of interest between the broker and client, and that the broker had determined the size of the commission which ultimately went against the client’s best interests, while also determining the length of contract.

During the landmark ruling the Judge stated: “Relevant information was … kept secret…and that concealment was, in my judgment, deliberate on Engie’s part.”

The ruling highlighted that ‘it was in Engie’s interest to keep the brokers happy and to, as far as possible, attract them to do business with Engie as opposed to another electricity supplier.’ 

It further added: If the customers did enter electricity supply contracts with Engie, then the brokers would obtain a payment …. It was Engie’s policy to not reveal the size or nature of this commission.’

Engie has 24 million customers across the globe and recorded a net recurring income for 2022 totalling 5.2 billion euros.

The owner of Queenie’s welcomed the ruling. “We are pleased to have won damages against the supplier,” he said. 

“We are a small business that, like many others, is trying to operate in challenging economic circumstances and we welcome this good news.”

This latest action follows a number of out of court settlements across the UK in similar cases. 

Callum Thompson, Managing Director at BEC is urging other businesses and organisations who have used an energy broker to obtain their energy supplies to get in touch, as they may have a claim.

He said: “This case has the real potential to open the floodgates to other businesses and organisations large and small which may have been misled and as a result mis-sold energy contracts.

“What we are looking at is a multi-billion pound issue which could affect thousands of  businesses and other organisations who may or may not realise they could have a claim.

“We want to ensure these consumers understand that if they thought the commission in an energy contract was being paid by the supplier and didn’t impact on their costs, then they are sadly wrong.

“As businesses and others continue to struggle against a growing cost of doing business crisis, it has never been more important for consumers to be fully informed about energy contracts and to question anything which doesn’t sit right.

“Any non-domestic user of energy which used an energy broker at any time to obtain its energy supply may have been mis-sold and could be entitled to compensation.” 

Business Energy Claims is a specialist claims firm with a dedicated team of energy and legal experts, helping businesses to recover hidden commissions and losses from the mis-selling of energy contracts.

Together with our panel of leading law firms, we are seeking to enable businesses to understand the nature of the deals they have done and recover monies where they have been overcharged.

If you believe you’ve been mis-sold your energy contract and think you’re entitled to compensation, call 0800 689 4259 or get in touch.

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