On-Demand Video

Utility Basics for GPs, Housing, Consumer, Bankruptcy, and Family Lawyers

  • City:
  • Start Date:2022-08-16 20:00:00
  • End Date:2024-08-16 20:00:00
  • Length:
  • Level:Various
  • Topics:Real Property

$149.00 ["ProPass"]

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Each year, tens of thousands of Pennsylvanians face the loss of essential utility services because they can’t afford to keep up with their bill.  This can trigger a host of legal consequences, including eviction, foreclosure, lien attachment, custody disputes, and family dependency proceedings.  These harsh consequences can often be avoided – eliminating the need for more costly litigation, eviction proceedings, or bankruptcy by matching clients with the right assistance program(s) – or by helping the client to navigate the utility dispute process.

This session will provide a deep dive into the laws governing utility terminations and reconnections; the availability of utility assistance programs, including how to navigate program rules and remove artificial barriers to enrollment; and the utility dispute process.  Presenters will also touch on other common utility issues, including special utility laws applicable to landlords and tenants, common billing and collections issues, submetering configurations, and utility resale/rebilling.  
Ultimately, participants will leave this session equipped to effectively and efficiently resolve the most common utility-related disputes for residential utility consumers.

All attendees will receive the course book as a digital download. Course materials are not available for separate purchase but a printed copy is available to attendees for $40. If you wish to purchase the printed version of the course book, please call PBI Customer Service at 800-932-4637.

Recorded in August 2022.


Elizabeth Marx Esq.

Ms. Marx is the Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Utility Law Project (PULP). PULP is a statewide specialty legal services within Regional Housing Legal Services and a member program within the Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network. In this role, Ms. Marx leads PULP’s policy, litigation, training, technical assistance, and specialized projects in furtherance of its mission to secure just and equitable access to safe and affordable utility services for Pennsylvanians experiencing poverty. She currently serves as Chairperson of the Department of Human Services’ Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program Advisory Committee and the Department of Community and Economic Development’s Weatherization Assistance Program Policy Advisory Council.  She also serves as a member of the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission’s Consumer Advisory Council and the Department of Environmental Protection’s Climate Change Advisory Committee. Before joining PULP in 2014, Ms. Marx worked as an attorney for the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence. She holds a BS in Political Science, cum laude, from Temple University, and a JD, magna cum laude, from Widener University School of Law, where she served as the Managing Editor of the Widener Law Journal.

Joline Price Esq.

Ms. Price is a Supervising Attorney in the Energy Unit at Community Legal Services in Philadelphia. She represents low-income residential utility customers struggling with their gas, electric and water service – working to restore and maintain access to those utilities. Prior to working at CLS, Ms. Price worked as a staff attorney at the Pennsylvania Utility Law Project, focusing on bill affordability and access to water, gas and electric service for low-income Pennsylvanians. From 2013 to 2015, she worked at the Pennsylvania Health Law Project, focusing on the intersection of family law and access to health insurance under the Affordable Care Act. At the Health Law Project, Ms. Price also advised low-income, elderly and disabled clients in eligibility for publicly funded health insurance and represented Medical Assistance recipients in obtaining coverage for medical services. Ms. Price also served as a Law Clerk to Judge Mary C. Jacobson in New Jersey Superior Court. Ms. Price is a member of the Pennsylvania Bar and received her J.D., magna cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania Law School in 2012.

Ria Pereira Esq.

Ria Pereira serves as a Supervising Attorney at PULP, where she provides legal representation, training, consultation, and support services in utility and energy matters affecting low-income residents and community organizations in Pennsylvania. Prior to joining PULP, Ria worked for 4 years as an attorney for a domestic violence agency representing survivors of domestic violence on a range of legal issues. Ria received her B.S. and B.A. in Psychology and Political Science from the University of Florida, and h er J.D. from the Pennsylvania State University, Dickinson School of Law.

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