• Consumer Affairs Branch

    The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) regulates privately owned California utilities that provide energy, water, and telecommunications services. If you have a question or complaint concerning one of these utility providers, help is available through the Consumer Affairs Branch (CAB). 

    CAB often assists consumers with billing and service matters with regulated utilities.   In addition, CAB assists consumers in resolving application denials (appeals) for the California LifeLine program participation.

    How to file a complaint

    Please follow the two step process outlined below if you have a complaint or inquiry about your utility provider.

  •    Initial Step: Contact Your Utility Provider

    Before contacting CAB, we recommend that you give your utility provider an opportunity to resolve your complaint by contacting their customer service department.  To get the best results from contacting your utility provider, please review the information in the link below.  
  •    Second Step: Contact CAB

    If your utility provider is unable to resolve your dispute, or if you are dissatisfied with the resolution, you may contact CAB for assistance. 

    To obtain the best results from your interaction with CAB, we encourage you to review the information provided in the links below before you contact us.   If you are already familiar with our complaint process you can file a written complaint using our online complaint form.

  • CAB's primary role is to answer questions and resolve informal complaints submitted by consumers against utility providers that are subject to CPUC authority.

    CAB receives these consumer contacts via phone and in writing. Written consumer contacts may be submitted via U.S. Mail, fax, or online.

    How CAB can help  

    The Consumer Affairs Branch cannot help in all situations as the CPUC. does not regulate some utility services and charges.

    • CAB cannot directly assist consumers that have questions and complaints about utility providers that are regulated by Federal, or Local Governments.
    • CAB cannot assist with certain fees such as taxes and surcharges not imposed by the CPUC.


     Please refer to our resources page for more information and whom to contact about Not Regulated - Non Jurisdictional matters. 

  • Useful Information

    Need Help Icon


    Frequently Asked Questions in CAB

    California Lifeline Logo

    LifeLine Appeal Process

    Appeal a LifeLine Program participation denial

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    Resources to obtaining help with your utility bill