Class Action Lawsuit for $1.2 Billion Reimbursement from Hydro-Québec
From 2008 to 2013, Hydro-Quebec overbilled its customers $ 1.2 billion, derived from excessive profits resulting from higher returns than those established by the Régie de l'énergie as fair and reasonable. Hydro-Québec achieved average profits of 10%, while those authorized by the Régie were in the range of 6% to 8%. Yet comparable energy companies are forced to hand over overpayments to their customers.
If the government decided to hand over the $ 1.2 billion to Hydro-Québec customers, this would mean a rate reduction of about 12% or a rebate of more than $ 300 per family.
In 2015, the late CAQ MNA Sylvie Roy defended customers by asking the government to repay them. Pierre Arcand, Minister of Natural Resources, undertook to do so, declaring: "As soon as we have restored a balanced budget, it is clear that these efficiency gains will be given back to consumers" .
Since that time, the budget has been balanced but Quebecers have not yet seen their money! Worse, electricity rates continue to rise. Over the past five years, the increases have doubled inflation. The number of Hydro-Québec customer disconnections has been steadily increasing since 2008, from 12,284 to 55,500 in 2015. The Corporation's executives continue to pay performance bonuses, including a record amount of $ 23 million in 2015.
Let's show the Québec government that the citizens have not forgotten their promise!
UPDATE (OCT 2017): Having received no response to our formal notice, we are proceeding with a class action lawsuit against Hydro-Québec on behalf of all overcharged customers. An application for authorization of a class action will be filed with the court in november and we'll hold a press conference as well on Nov. 8, at 11AM.
Also note that in the application, which will be available online on weroes.com, we refuse that the government simply increase Hydro rates in order to refund us. The majority of these overpayments ended up in the coffers of the government, which got hold of these funds through an omnibus bill in 2015. It’s not surprising that the government reached a record surplus of $4.5 billion - that's where our money went! We won't quit until we get our money back!