Energy Company Debits $1.28 Million From Your Bank Account

Guess what happens when you don’t look closely at your bill? Your energy company debits $1.28 million dollars from your bank account — leaving you a million dollars overdrawn.

9 News in Colorado says that Jittilak Chaivann, a restaurant owner in Aurora, CO, didn’t pay much attention to her utility bill because she has autopay.

“I just looked real quick. With auto pay, I never have a problem,” she said.

Then Xcel Energy sent her a bill for $1.28 million instead of the usual $1,200 or so. She didn’t notice all the extra zeros, so they debited the money — causing the next check Chaivann wrote (for the rent on her restaurant) to bounce. When she called the bank to see what happened she was told that she was a million dollars overdrawn.

Xcel figured out how much the restaurant really owed, wiped out the bill and has promised to pay any overdraft charges, but the moral of the story is that you should always read your bills — even if you have auto pay.

Xcel’s million-dollar misprint a shock [9 News via Fark]

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.