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Definition

The energy check is a means of payment issued by the state to help modest households pay their energy bills. This aid concerns electricity bills (EDF, etc.) as well as gas (Engie, etc.), wood, fuel oil, etc.

The energy check can also be used to finance some of the energy saving work in the dwelling.

Scheduled by the energy transition law , the energy check has been generalized throughout France since 1 January 2018. This title replaces the previously applicable social energy tariffs, namely the first necessity tariff (electricity) and the special tariff. solidarity (natural gas).

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Resource ceiling

The energy check is awarded on condition of income. The beneficiaries are therefore households with low resources.

These ceilings of the energy check are increased in 2019 (decree of 26 December 2018 modifying the ceiling and the face value of the energy check, published in the Official Journal of 28 December). According to the executive, about 2 million additional households can receive the aid compared to 2018 following this increase in ceilings.

In 2019, the energy check is allocated to households whose annual reference tax revenue does not exceed:

10 700 euros a year for a single person,

16,050 euros for a couple,

19,260 euros for a couple with a child,

plus 3,210 euros per person more in the home.

Amount

The government has increased the average amount of the energy check to 200 euros in 2019. This measure is included in the 2019 budget law . It was recorded by the decree of 26 December 2018 (OJ of 28 December).

The amount of the energy check is determined by income and household composition. The minimum amount of the energy check 2019 is 48 euros per year, while the maximum amount is set at 277 euros per year.

Specific assistance to social residences is set at 192 euros in 2019.

Simulator

The rules for calculating energy checks are quite complex. The scale takes into account the reference tax income and the units of consumption (UC) of housing, which depend on the size of the home.

To help beneficiaries assess the amount to which they are entitled, the Ministry of Ecology has put online a free simulator by which you can know the amount to which you are entitled by filling in your tax number.

Procedures and procedure

In principle, the beneficiaries of the energy check have no action to take. The administration is responsible for the payment, automatically.

Every year after sending tax returns , the tax authorities send the list of households receiving the energy check to the Payment and Services Agency, which is in charge of delivering the checks. The beneficiary therefore has no request for an energy check to send: he receives his check automatically by mail addressed to his mailbox.

You must have declared your income to receive the energy check. Including when you are not taxable.

Date of receipt

The energy check is sent once a year to the recipient’s home at the same time. It is usually sent in early spring. The dates of dispatch vary according to the departments: in 2018, they ranged between March 26th and April 28th.

The 2019 energy check will be sent in the spring of 2019.

When to use it

The check can be used to pay for all or part of a housing-related energy bill.

Energy invoices

Electricity and gas suppliers can therefore be paid with an energy check. The same applies to suppliers of fuel oil, wood or liquefied petroleum gas. These providers can not refuse you payment by energy check.

On the other hand, the energy check can not be used to pay heating bills .

Works and installations

The check may also be used to finance an expense related to the acquisition or installation of equipment, materials and appliances eligible for the tax credit for energy saving work. These are the expenses to qualify for the Energy Transition Tax Credit ( ISCED ).

Sheltered housing

Under certain conditions, the energy check can also be used to pay rent for a home-unit .

Advantages

Move

The benefit of the energy check also entitles you to free start-up in the event of a move .

Travelling expenses

Recipients of the energy check are also entitled to an 80% rebate on the invoicing of travel expenses following a supply interruption due to an unpaid invoice.

Winter break

Recipients of an energy check are also entitled to maintain their electrical power during the winter break , even in the event of a payment incident. For other households, the energy supplier has the possibility to reduce this power in case of unpaid invoice, cf. the EDF cuts during the winter break .

How to use it

To pay with an energy check, you can send your title by mail or go through an online service on the internet.

By mail

To pay, the beneficiary sends his energy check to his supplier, indicating his customer number on the back and attaching a copy of the invoice.

Online

At some providers, it is also possible to pay online with the energy check via an online departmental service .

Refund

The energy check can not be refunded. When the amount is higher than the invoice for which it is used, the overpayment is deducted from the next invoice.

Period of validity

The energy check is valid during the calendar year of its issue and until March 31 of the following year. So you can use it again even after December 31 of the year it was sent.