COVID-19 Resources: Utilities
Utilities can not be shut off until the state of MA is no longer in a state of emergency. We encourage you to call your utility company to make a payment plan.
Gas, Oil, and Electricity
Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities, 3/19/20
DPU has ordered all utility companies to not shut off utilities, regardless of bill payment. This will continue until DPU determines that the need for the order has ended.
Info from Mass Legal Help 3/16/20
The Department of Public Utilities (DPU) has extended the utility moratorium while Massachusetts is in a state of emergency. The Department of Public Utilities prohibits utility companies from shutting off service from November 15-to March 15, if anyone in the home:
- Is under 12 months or older than 65,
- Has a serious or chronic illness like diabetes, ADHD, asthma, or
- Cannot afford to pay for heat for the winter months (November-March, and sometimes to April).
Because of COVID-19, the DPU has extended this moratorium until Massachusetts is no longer in a state of emergency, or the DPU decides to end the moratorium. Once the state of emergency is over, the DPU expects utility companies to make every reasonable accommodation to help customers pay their bill before they shut off service.
Internet and Phone
Through the end of the year, eligible new customers can sign up to receive 60 days of free Internet Essentials service, which is an internet adoption program for low-income households.
Free Xfinity WiFi hotspots are located in businesses and outdoor locations across the country and are available to anyone who needs them – including non-Xfinity internet subscribers – through the end of the year. Comcast is also offering free unlimited data on all plans and have ensured no disconnects or late fees.
Lifeline is a federal program that lowers the monthly cost of phone and internet. Eligible customers will get up to $9.25 toward their bill. You can only use Lifeline for either phone or internet, but not both. To get Lifeline, find a company near you.