If you are a residential customer and have gone without power for at least 48 hours due to severe storm conditions, you may qualify for a payment under PG&E’s Safety Net Program. This program provides for the automatic payment of $25-$100, which is paid about 60 days following the storm outage. You should NOT submit a claim form to obtain a Safety Net payment. View Safety Net here.
At PG&E, it is our policy to respond to claims promptly and fairly. To evaluate your claim, we must determine:
We evaluate each claim based on the information you provide and our investigation, which may involve:
Our goal is to reach a decision on your claim within 30 days of receipt. However, if there are complex issues involved or if we need additional information, the process may take longer. When our investigation is complete, we will either call you or send you a letter informing you of our decision.
Generally speaking, PG&E is responsible for damages that result from our negligence. We are not responsible for damages that we do not cause or that are the result of forces beyond our control. For example, in most instances we are not responsible for:
There may be situations in which PG&E is only partially responsible for a loss. In those cases, we offer to pay our fair share.
To ensure a smooth process, we recommend you do the following:
You may wish to refer your claim to your insurance company. The insurer may be able to reimburse you for your losses without an investigation and will, in some cases, pay replacement value for damaged items. Your insurer and PG&E can determine if we are responsible for the damages and agree on the amount due, if any.
PG&E evaluates all claims fairly. If your claim is denied, we will explain the reason for the denial. If a specific gas or electric rule (such rules are filed with the California Public Utilities Commission and have the force and effect of law) applies, we will provide you with an explanation or a copy of the rule. If you are not satisfied with our decision and explanation, you may request an appeal of the decision to a Claims Supervisor. You also have the right, at any time in the claims process, to file a court action, including a small claims action (if the value of your claim does not exceed $7,500). The small claims process does not involve attorneys.
Is there a time limit on filing a claim or court action?
It is best to submit a claim as soon as possible, and yes, a claim may be submitted too late. To determine whether a claim is timely submitted, PG&E is guided by our claims experience and/or the applicable time limits (called statutes of limitations) for the filing of legal actions set by California or other applicable law. Our claims experience indicates that food spoilage and other similar claims should be made promptly and, therefore, such claims will only be paid if they are submitted and resolved within one year from the date of the incident. In addition, we refer to various statutes of limitations. Generally, the statute of limitations for filing an action involving personal injury is two years from the date of the incident; personal inconvenience (such as a meal out) is one year; business interruption or economic loss where there is no property damage is two years; and tangible property damage is three years. Give yourself ample time for the claim process. If your claim is not submitted and resolved before these deadlines, it will be denied. If you have questions regarding these limits, you should consult an attorney.
If you have a billing dispute that you are not able to resolve with PG&E, you may file a complaint with the California Public Utilities Commission. The CPUC also sets general rules relating to claims processing, but does not rule on the merits of individual claims. For further information about the role of the CPUC, you can call 1-800-649-7570 or visit the CPUC website.