Energy cheque in France : how can you get & use it to pay your bills
Does the Coronavirus crisis have an impact on the energy cheque? A new shipment schedule has been created for the energy cheque regarding the service disruptions of the French Post Office. This schedule can still be modified as a consequence of the evolution of the health crisis. Moreover, the use of the 2019 energy cheque has been postponed until September 2020.
What you need to know about the energy cheque :
- The energy cheque has been created for modest income households on resource-tested benefits;
- Allocation and shipment of the cheques are automatic and there is no procedure to carry out. The mailing is usually made in March or April;
- The energy cheque amount varies regarding the household incomes;
- The energy cheque can be used for paying energy bills or energy renovation works (by transforming the « energy cheque » into a « work cheque »).
Who can pretend to an energy cheque?
The energy cheque is available for energy poor households, meaning families using more than 10% of their budget to pay energy bills. The method of allocation of such cheque is based on the income tax reference that takes into account the global level of incomes and the composition of the household.
To be eligible and receive the energy cheque, the annual income tax reference of the household shall not be higher than 10.700€ per Consumption Unit (CU), knowing that:
- 1 person of the household accounts for 1 CU;
- The second person accounts for 0,5 CU ;
- And each additional person accounts for 0,3 CU.
Please note: the consumption units are divided by two when it concerns juveniles with shared custody in both parents’ households. Therefore, the energy cheque is allocated to households with income tax lower than:
- 10 700€ for a single person (1 CU x 10 700€);
- 16 050€ for a couple (1CU x 10 700€ + 0,5CU x 10 700€) ;
- 19 260€ for a couple with one dependent child (1CU x 10 700€ + 0,5CU x 10 700€ + 0,3CU x 10 700€);
- 22 470€ for a couple with two dependent childs (1CU x 10 700€ + 0,5CU x 10 700€ + 0,3CU x 10 700€ + 0,3CU x 10 700€) ;
Please note that the conditions under which the energy cheque is allocated have been amended in order to be open for a larger number of households. Indeed, the maximum of households incomes have been increased.
How can I get my energy cheque?
No specific administrative requirements shall be carried out since the allocation of the energy cheque is made automatically to the eligible households. Each year, the General Direction of Public Finances (DGFIP) creates a file with the name of all people satisfying the required conditions. It is then sent to the Payment and Services Agency (ASP) that sends each cheque to its beneficiary by mail or email.
The energy cheque is nominative and cannot be transferred.
Besides, in case of moving, in order to be sure to receive the cheque the following year, make sure you communicate your new address to the tax department. Indeed, the cheques are mailed to the address known by the public administration.
What is the amount for the energy cheque in 2020?
The help from the Stat is usually around 200€, and can go from 48€ to 277€. Its amount varies depending on the income level and composition of the household. Please note that the energy cheque can be added to the financial support called MaPrimeRénov, a financial support that substitute the tax credit (Crédit d'Impôt).
Number of Consumption Units
Income tax reference per CU
5600€ to 6700€
6700€ to 7700€
7700€ to 10700€
1 CU (one person)
Between 1 et 2 CU (2-3 persons)
2 CU and more (4 persons and more)
Amounts of the energy cheque in 2020, from the website of the Public Service.
I do not agree with the amount. The consumer is allowed to call the free phone number 0 805 204 805 if he or she thinks the amount received is not correct.
As a reminder, the average discount with social prices TPN and TSS, that was available before 2018 was 114€ according to CRE.
No matter if your household can pretend to an energy cheque or not, you can still cut down your bill by paying attention to the electricity/gas price per KWh and by choosing a cheaper energy provider. Learn more by calling +339 87 67 37 93 (Monday to Friday from 8h to 21h, Saturday from 8h30 to 18h30 and Sunday from 9h to 17h)
When should I receive my energy cheque?
Cheques are sent region by region between March to the last week of April. Each year, a specific schedule is set in order to give the details of the sending dates for each French department. Please note the following:
- For local distribution companies and for DOM-TOM territories, the expeditions by mail are made during several weeks;
- The receipt is made within 2 to 4 days of the mailing;
- The beneficiaries of the energy cheque who received it the previous years and who have already chosen their energy provider, are informed of the allocation of the cheque between March and April, no matter the department they live in.
How can I use my energy cheque?
What you can pay with the energy cheque
The main evolution developed with the energy cheque is the fact that it allows the consumer to pay all or part of:
- The energy bills (electricity, gas, wood, LPG, fuel, biomass, fuels for the heating or water heating) ;
- But also energy renovation works (such as thermal insulation or the condensing boiler setup ).
People living in condominium units with a collective heating may use the energy cheque for the individual electricity bills. As regards people living in residence, they can use it to pay their fees to the management of the residence.
But the energy cheque is not a cheque for motor fuel, and it cannot be used to pay the refuel of a vehicle.
The eligibility to the energy cheque gives also the right to have a free commissioning of the electricity and natural gas meters. It also offers the possibility to enjoy a 80% discount on the fees that can occur if a specialist has to come to your household to open the meter because of a power cut due to unpaid bills (and therefore not to suffer a power reduction during the winter break).
To defend your rights, you usually just have to give the information to your energy provider and sometimes send the certificates received with your cheque.
How can you pay with your energy cheque?
It can be sent as a paper version by mail to the energy provider to pay the energy bill. If you choose to do so you would have to send also a copy of the-said bill or any other document with your client references.
The energy cheque cannot be divided and is not reimbursable. So, you cannot use it to pay several bills. Nevertheless, if its amount is higher than the amount of the bill, the excess will be used and deducted from the following bills. In case of a termination of a contract, while the total amount of the energy cheque has not been used by its beneficiary, what remains left can be reimbursed.
Address to send the energy cheque
Alterna energy cheque
Antargaz energy cheque
Butagaz energy cheque
Cdiscount Énergie - Service client
Dyneff energy cheque
EDF energy cheque
ekWateur energy cheque
Electricité de Provence energy cheque
Enalp energy cheque
Enercoop energy cheque
Énergem energy cheque
Energies du Santerre energy cheque
Engie energy cheque
Eni energy cheque
Gaz de Bordeaux energy cheque
GEG energy cheque
Happ-e energy cheque
Iberdrola energy cheque
ilek energy cheque
Lucia Energie energy cheque
Mint Energie energy cheque
Ohm Energie energy cheque
Ovo Energy Chèque Energie
Proxelia energy cheque
Sélia energy cheque
Sowee energy cheque
TotalEnergies energy cheque
Urban Solar Energy energy cheque
Vattenfall energy cheque
Wekiwi energy cheque
It is possible to pay the bills online through a specific page of the website. To do so, you have to fill your client number and references, the reference of the cheque and also the code written under the words "nul si découvert". This part shall be scratched once in order to prevent any multiple use of the same cheque. As medium-term objective, it will be possible to pay online directly on the website of each energy provider.
Moreover, it is possible for each energy cheque beneficiary to ask that the future energy cheque will be used for all energy bills of the following year. Therefore, the discount appears directly on the bills without any specific procedure to be handle by the beneficiary. This automatic use on the bills is stopped if the client changes his or her energy provider. He or she will therefore receive the new energy cheque by mail.
Expiry date of the energy cheque Be careful, the energy cheque is not meant to be kept or added. Its runs from April 1st to March 31st of the following year and its validity date is written on the left side of the cheque. The validity term can be prorogated one year if the beneficiary intends to realize some renovation works and asks the official administration for a prorogation. There is no possible reimbursement of the energy cheque.
I have not received my energy cheque, what can I do?
For all people who have not received their energy cheque, it may not have been distributed yet. If people around you have received it and not you, you can always call the free phone number for energy cheque: 0 805 204 805. The beneficiaries service may help you by looking for an information at the Payment and Services Agency to know where the difficulty comes from.
Besides, the energy cheque is nominative and therefore, it is not possible to give it to a third party or even a person of your family.
What can I do if I got my energy cheque lost or stolen?
In this case, you shall declare the loss or the theft online. You can also call the claims department for energy cheque: 0 805 204 805, an adviser will help you from Monday to Friday between 8h and 20h.
My energy cheque is damaged, can I still use it?
If the code that shall be scratched has already been scratched or if the cheque has been damaged, torn and the information for the payment cannot be read, it is possible to ask for a reedition of the cheque. The energy cheque will be sent within several weeks. We would recommend all professionals receiving a damaged energy cheque to refuse it as it may have been already used and can no longer be a method of payment.
When has the energy cheque been created?
The energy cheque has successfully completed its testing period. Since May 1st 2016, 4 French departments (Ardèche, Aveyron, Côtes-d’Armor and Pas-de-Calais) were testing this process that had been created by Ms Ségolène Royal, the French energy minister at that time. As confirmed by the successor to this minisitry, Mr Nicolas Hulot on Septembre 18th, 2017, the energy cheque has been expanded to the whole territory since 2018. The first cheques have been sent on March 26th, 2018.
How is the energy cheque financed?
Financed by all energy consumers (with the CSPE and the TICGN), social prices of energy costed around 400 million euros and touched more than 3 million households.
The energy cheque now helps almost 6 million households and can help financing all types of heating or water heating systems. Still financed with the CSPE on electricity and TICGN on gas, the cheque represented a cost of almost 600 million euros in 2018. With its reevaluation in 2019, its cost has increased up to 850 million euros per year if all beneficiaries have used it.