Here we are, nearing the end of the first quarter of 2016 . . . and you may need to update your billing records and/or tariffs to reflect changes in the amount of interest to be paid on customer deposits. More than 20 state Commissions set/reset the interest rate to be paid on customer deposits on an annual basis. The interest that must be paid on customer deposits ranges from 0.11% in New Jersey and Texas to 12% in Rhode Island and several states at 7%. TMI staff tracks those changes and more.
Many state Commissions require that interest be paid only when deposits are held over a specific period of time or on deposits over a specific dollar amount. For example, in several states interest must be paid on deposits held more than 30 days. However, in Mississippi, interest is only paid on deposits held more than one year. In Alaska interest must be paid only on deposits over $100.
But then some Commissions don’t regulate deposits at all! At Technologies Management, Inc. we have spent many hours collecting all the Commission rules regulating customer deposits. We know what an arduous task it is to track changes all over the country and stay compliant. Many of our clients use our Customer Relations Rules App. to update their billing systems. We have helped verify the following for companies conducting billing audits:
- when deposits are allowed
- the amount
- whether interest must be paid and
- when the deposit must be returned to the customer.
We will continue to collect this data and make this information available via the Rules App and will keep you advised of any major changes that occur.