Due to the state of alarm declared as a result of the COVID-19 epidemic, the Government has extended application of the discounted rate (bono social) for customers who are currently due to renew. The renewal deadline is automatically extended until 30 September.
What is the Social Rate?
The Social Rate is a discount established by the Government on the VPSC tariff, aimed at protecting households classed as vulnerable.
Since Royal Decree 897/2017 came into force in October 2017, the requirements for benefiting from the Social Rate have changed.
Who can benefit from the new Social Rate?
In order to benefit from the Social Rate, you must have the VPSC electricity tariff (with or without time restriction) and a contracted power equivalent to or below 10 kW in your usual residence.
In addition, you will need to fulfil certain requirements in order to be classed as a vulnerable customer, severely vulnerable or severely vulnerable customer at risk of social exclusion.
What are these requirements?
Vulnerable customers (benefiting from a 25% discount on electricity bills) are considered to be anyone holding a VPSC contract that fulfil any of the following requirements.
Their total annual income is less than or equivalent to the following limits:
- If you are not part of a family unit or there are no underage children in it: 1.5 times the IPREM* (Multiplier for the Public Income Index).
- If there is a minor in the family unit: 2 times the IPREM*.
- If there are two underage children in the family unit: 2.5 times the IPREM*.
*Annual IPREM 14 payments valid for 2019: 7,519.59 euros.
All of these thresholds will be increased by 0.5 times the IPREM if any of these circumstances are met:
- If a member of the family unit has a recognized disability equal to or greater than 33%, is the victim of gender-based violence, or a victim of terrorism.
- If a member of the family unit is in a situation of recognized dependency -of grade 2 or 3.
- If it is confirmed that the family unit is composed of a single parent and, at least, one minor (single parent families).
Pensioners: if the applicant (or in the case of a family unit, all members of the same) who have income, receive the minimum pension (for retirement or permanent disability) and do not receive any other income whose annual aggregate amount exceeds €500.
Large families: all without exception.
Severely vulnerable customers
Customers are classed as severely vulnerable (discount of 40% on electricity bills):
- Because of their income: those who meet the requirements to be considered vulnerable customers and also have income levels below 50% of the limits established for vulnerable customers.
- Pensioners: all the members of a family unit are pensioners within the Social Security System, receiving a minimum pension (through retirement or permanent disability) and their annual income is less than or equivalent to 1 times the IPREM.
- Large families: with an income equal to an amount below 2 times the IPREM.
Severely vulnerable customers at risk of social exclusion
This category includes severely vulnerable customers receiving assistance from social services from a regional or local Administration that finances at least 50% of the sum of their bill.
New rate subsidy due to COVID-19
Due to COVID-19, there is a legislative expansion that can be taken advantage of by certain people affected by the coronavirus.
Therefore, the following people can also request the subsidised rate:
- Unemployed people.
- People affected by a temporary workforce restructuring plan (ERTE).
- If you are a business person who has had their working day reduced due to care or other similar commitments that involve a substantial loss of income.
What are the requirements for this new subsidised rate?
You have to meet certain income requirements. In the month prior to submitting the application, the income of the household members must be within the following thresholds:
INCOME THRESHOLDS FOR COVID-19 SUBSIDISED RATE