Jersey Central Power and Light assistance programs.

Resources available to low income customers from Jersey Central Power and Light are extensive. The company can offer payment plans, direct families to government assistance, provide free conservation measures, and other support. JCP&L, as well as First Energy, work with customers in order to help them prevent a disconnection of their service.

Those on a fixed income often benefit from the Extended Due Date. Households that are at least 60 years old and receive a pension or Social Security check, or if they receive SSDI disability cash assistance, they can time their bills and payments. New Jersey Light can extend your payment due date until after your monthly check arrives.

Payment Extensions and/or Extended Payment Plans will help those who are struggling to pay their electric bill on time. The company, and its representatives, can arrange a payment plan that may offer you more time. This will in effect maintain the customer's service for a defined period of time while they make payments more suited to their financial situation.

The Military Deferred Payment Program is an option for New Jersey residents whose family members have been called to active military duty. People may elect to defer paying either all or part of their monthly electric bill if they are struggling and need help. After the member returns home, your account will be reviewed for any possible payment arrangement or financial aid. 1-800-962-0383.

New Jersey Department of Community Affairs and the Universal Service Fund Program will establish a payment plan for low income families. Participants of USF will pay a percentage of their total household income for their utility, electric and natural gas bills. The New Jersey Department of Human Services also oversees the program. Another component of it that Jersey Central Power and Light families my qualify for is debt forgiveness.

Weatherization and Comfort Partners Program are free energy conservation and education programs. They are targeted at very low-income customers of Jersey Central Power & Light. The programs, one of which is private and the other government funded, assists customers with saving energy and money by reducing their electric bills.




If qualified, the program will install energy conservation measures in the families home. It will also educate family members on their available energy and conservation choices. Participation for any resource will be prioritized based on the customer's energy consumption as well as income.

Balanced or average billing is available from the Equal Payment Plan, or EPP. This program offers customers one fixed monthly payment throughout the year. So their monthly bill will be consistent and people will avoid the normal seasonal highs and lows in their heating and electric bills. A true up of your account will occur every several months.

Those customers that are enrolled in EPP will be billed one-twelfth of their estimated usage. It can change when the true up occurs, and the customer may even need to pay a balance or receive a credit for the over or underpayment. However, it can help Jersey Central Power and Light customers of all income levels budget and plan appropriately.

SHARES, or the New Jersey Statewide Heating Assistance and Referral for Energy Services, is available from a non-profit corporation that was organized to provide utility bill assistance. It is for those that need short term help with paying their energy bills.




Applicants need to have shows a strong payment history in the past. The distribution of funds and grants for qualified JCP&L customers is administered by community-based organizations throughout the state.

Federal government aid is offered from the Home Energy Assistance Program. Local community-based organizations and the New Jersey Department of Human Services oversee it. Grants are used for heating bills and, rarely, air conditioning bills during the summer months. Low income limits are in place. There is both an annual component of HEAP as well as an emergency Program for Jersey Central Power and Light customers. 1-800-662-3115.

Disabled persons and senior citizens can apply for help from Lifeline. Call 1-800-792-9745. It provides cash assistance and funding for paying utility bills (both electric and natural gas). An application must be made annually to receive the government benefit.

If you have a health care concern, then the Medical Certification program is for customers with severe health problems. A disconnection can be prevented for a period of time if they have a licensed doctor certify that, for serious health reasons, their power or utility service should not be disconnected for nonpayment.



By Jon McNamara

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