The PSC has the responsibility for regulation of the rates and
services of electric, telephone, natural gas, water, wastewater
and solid waste disposal utilities. In addition, some motor
carrier operations remain under the jurisdiction of the
The Commission does not have authority to initially set the
rates established by municipal utilities or cooperatives. It
does have limited jurisdiction, upon a timely petition following
a rate action, to review the rates of municipal utilities and
cooperatives. However, a petition asking for Commission review
of municipal and coop rates must be filed within 30 days of the
rate action by the utility's governing body and it must either
be signed by 25% of the utility's customers or present evidence
of discrimination customers seeking Commission review.
In addition to rate and service territory jurisdiction, the
Commission also establishes service standards which regulated
utilities must meet.
Action on Your Complaint:
Our Consumer Affairs Technicians will
review your request for assistance and discuss the problem with you.
Though the PSC cannot resolve every problem to the customer's
satisfaction, it does act promptly on your requests for assistance and
makes every effort to see that they are handled fairly.
Most of the requests for assistance the PSC receives are
resolved in an informal manner through discussions involving the
customer, the company, and the PSC staff. However, if these efforts are
not satisfactory, the staff can provide you with information on how to
obtain further review of your PSC complaint.
The toll-free number is
A customer service representative will be glad to help you.
Or file a Request for Assistance electronically,
Or write to:
Public Service Commission of WV
c/o Customer Assistance
201 Brooks Street
PO Box 812
Charleston, WV 25323
STEP 3 - INSTRUCTIONS FOR FILING FORM 1 - FORMAL COMPLAINTS
The instructions provided on this page are intended to provide general
instruction only. The Commission's
of Practice and Procedure, 150 CSR1, contain specific provisions
relating to formal complaints. Please refer to these for a more specific
detail of rights and responsibilities.
Any person, firm, association of person or entity may complain to the
Commission substantially in the form hereinafter prescribed (See Form
No. 1) of anything done or omitted to be done by any public utility in
violation of any of the provisions of the Public Service Commission Law
of West Virginia.
Two or more complainants may join in one complaint if their respective
causes of action are against the same defendant or defendants and
involve substantially the same violation of law and a statement of
facts. When any defendant is operated by a receiver or trustee, both the
utility and its receiver or trustee must be made defendants.
The names of all parties, complainant and defendant, must be printed and
stated in full without abbreviation, and the address and phone number of
each complainant must be given. If the complainant is represented by an
attorney, the attorney's name and address must be given.
Formal Complaints should be written to fully and completely advise the
defendant or defendants and the Commission wherein the provisions of the
law have been, are, or will be violated. Each distinct charge should be
stated concisely in a separate paragraph.
The complaint should state specifically the relief sought. If the
complainant is also seeking emergency or interim relief, this should be
clearly stated. The complaint must explain the need for interim relief
and specify the interim relief sought, for example, that service be
restored while the complaint is pending. The complaint must allege
extraordinary facts of immediate and irreparable injury or public
interest as would justify the Commission granting interim relief.
Please remember to do the following when filling out a FORMAL
•Type or use black ink.
• Additional information may be submitted on 8 1/2 X 11 paper
attached to the complaint.
• Please do NOT write on the back of the form OR on back of
• The Formal Complaint Form 1 MUST BE SIGNED by each CUSTOMER
• EACH CUSTOMER SIGNATURE MUST be NOTARIZED BY A
NOTARY PUBLIC to be processed.
to Download a copy of FORM 1 - Formal Complaint Form.
Mail Form 1 to the attention of :
Ingrid Ferrell, Executive Secretary
Public Service Commission of West Virginia
201 Brooks Street, P.O.
Charleston, West Virginia 25323
Fax to 304-340-0325. All faxed forms require follow-up of the
hard copy by mail to the address above.
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN THE PSC RECEIVES YOUR FORM 1?
When a Formal Complaint is filed in the Secretary's Office, it is then
assigned a case number
and placed on the Commission's docket of active cases. A copy of the
complaint is served upon the defendant(s), together with a copy of the
Commission's order requiring the defendant(s) to satisfy the said
complaint, file a written answer, or request mediation (mediation
is offered to billing dispute cases only) in writing to the complaint
within 10 days from the date it is received by the defendants.
The complainant will be sent a letter acknowledging receipt by the
Commission and stating the case number assigned to the formal complaint.
It is important to have the case number ready
if you call the Commission regarding the formal complaint. The
complainant is also sent a "Notice to
Complainants" form that explains responsibilities and procedures.
Beginning October 1, 2007, the Commission began a pilot
mediation process that is only offered to cases that involve
billing disputes. A description of the mediation process and a form to
request mediation are enclosed with acknowledgement letters.
Within ten (10) days from the date of service of the complaint and order
described above, the defendant(s) complained against shall file a
typewritten answer or answers, duly verified (duly verified means that
you confirm that the statements contained in your answer are true), or
request mediation (mediation is offered to only billing dispute cases)
in writing. This period may be shortened or extended by the
Commission when it deems advisable.
The original answer and twelve (12) copies thereof must be filed
with Ingrid Ferrell, the Executive Secretary of the Commission, and, at
the same time, a copy of said answer shall be served by the defendant(s)
upon each complainant or their attorney. The defendant(s) shall certify
to the Secretary that said service has been made. Attorneys must provide
their WV State Bar ID number on all pleadings.
An answer(s) should fully and completely advise the parties and the
Commission of the nature of the defense, and should admit or deny
specifically and in detail each material allegation of the complaint
If a defendant satisfies a Formal Complaint, either before or after
answering, a statement to the effect signed by the complainant and
defendant must be filed setting forth when and how the complaint has
been satisfied. The proceeding may then be dismissed by Commission
PROCESSING FORMAL COMPLAINTS
The formal complaint process is different from the informal
because it involves a legal proceeding before the Commission.
This means that you and the utility must present facts on issues
raised in your complaint to the Commission. However, this should
not discourage you from filing a complaint. It is extremely
important that you read and respond to all letters, orders or
filings received from the Executive Secretary’s Office of the
Public Service Commission.
Individuals or companies may file formal complaints. Individuals
do not need a lawyer to file a formal complaint. However,
companies must be represented by an attorney. Complaints
may be retained by the three member Commission, however most are
referred to the Administrative Law Judge Division for
processing. Upon the filing of a formal complaint, a Staff
Attorney and members of the Commission’s Technical Staff are
assigned to investigate all complaints and present an
independent recommendation to the Commission. Many matters
are resolved based upon the filings of the participants (the
complainant and the utility) to the complaint. However, some
complaint cases require a hearing where evidence from all
participants, including Staff, is presented. When an
Administrative Law Judge issues a Recommended Decision the
parties have a right to challenge that decision by submitting
written exceptions to the Commission within fifteen (15) days.
The Commission enters Final Orders in all matters.