INDIANAPOLIS- A renter living on Indy’s east side is frustrated after receiving a bill that includes the previous tenant’s debt from AES Indiana.
Reno Beneventi said he got a rude awakening when the lights were turned off Tuesday morning without warning.
“I had to throw away all my food away. I got dogs and had to sleep in the car with the air conditioner on because it was just too hot; it’s ridiculous,” said Beneventi.
Beneventi says the confusion began when he tried to get the bill transferred in his name.
“They said they had to deny it because of a typo on the lease stating my start and end date is 2024,” said Beneventi.
But when he tried to fix it, he got the runaround. He said the previous tenant owed more than $700 dollars. AES Indiana told him the balance must be paid in full to get the lights back on, according to Beneventi.
“I asked to speak to a supervisor. I was put on hold for three hours with no answer. The phone died and I have no power to charge my phone,” said Beneventi.
FOX59/CBS4 contacted The Citizens Action Coalition to find out what could be done.
“New tenants are certainly in no way, shape, or form legally obligated to pay a previous balance for former tenants. The balance follows the customer, not the address,” said Kerwin Olson, director of Citizens Action Coalition.
Olson said if this is happening to you, there is help.
“There is an agency called the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission. They have a division called the Consumer Affairs division, which is the agency folks in this situation need to reach out to immediately,” said Olson.
AES said they cannot discuss a specific customer’s bills. However, the power company did state that the renter is not responsible for the previous tenant’s unpaid bill.