Water Arrears: What should I do if I can’t pay my bills?

Your supplier can take further action if you do not pay your water bill arrears. Though they may be unable to cut your water supply, they can pursue court action to compel you in paying what you owe. Falling behind payments on any of your priority debts indicates that you need debt advice.

In this article, you can find out what to do if you have arrears and the help that you can get in paying your water bill.

What can my water company do if I have arrears?

Once you missed payments to your supplier, they’ll take the following actions:

  • Sending notice to remind you about your arrears
  • Sending a final notice if you failed to comply with the first notice that was sent to you, allowing 7 days for you to settle it
  • Contacting you to request payments
  • Forwarding your debts to the collection agency if they fail to contact or collect any payments
  • Getting a CCJ or County Court Judgment is all means are exhausted. You’ll be given a chance to offer payments that you can afford

Moreover, when you get a CCJ amounting over £600, the water supplier can send High Court enforcement officers instead of bailiffs. This can happen because debts on your water bill are not regulated by the Consumer Credit Act.

In fact, water suppliers can appeal to deduct weekly payments from your benefits, by applying to the Department of Work & Pensions or DWP.

Can my water company cut off supply?

Your water supplier cannot cut off your water supply. However, you still have to settle your arrears to prevent your supplier from taking further action against you.

Can I get assistance in paying my water arrears?

If you’re getting benefits, it would be possible to arrange payments for your water bill arrears. It can be taken out directly from your benefits through a Water Direct Scheme. In this scheme, part of your benefits will be cover the arrears including your current usage. This can help you settle your arrears into an amount that you can afford. It can also prevent your water supplier in taking further steps against you.

The downside of Water Direct is that the arrears are deducted at a fixed rate amounting to £3.70 per week for the 2016-17 tax year. This sums up to approximately £16 a month. Nevertheless, you may be able to arrange cheaper payments directly with the water supplier.
To get more details on the WaterDirect scheme, get in touch with your water company.

Ways to Save Money on Bills and Living Costs

Here are a few of the money-saving tips and remedy that can help you attain your budget:

Available Scheme to Help Pay Your Water Bill


It’s a scheme to help consumers who are getting benefits, having high water usage due to medical reasons or those with a large family. There are also other set criteria for you to be eligible. You can get more details by checking the Ofwat website.

Welsh Water Assist Scheme

On the contrary, if you’re a Welsh water consumer there’s the Welsh Water Assist Scheme. You just have to contact your water supplier and find out about it.

Free Debt Advice on Water Bill and Arrears

If you’re falling behind payments on your water bill, we can help you put together a realistic budget along with free debt advice. This can help you understand your situation so you can deal with it.

The budget created can be used to arrange payment with your water company and show them what you can afford to pay towards your arrears. You can also use our debt advice tool for free or call us to get in touch with our debt experts.