Whether you’re in search of emergency assistance or ongoing aid, our comprehensive Assistance Resource Guide will guide you toward the best option for your situation.

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Assistance We Offer

We have a variety of ways to help you.
 

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Public Assistance Programs

See how other agencies and organizations can help you.

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Payment Plans and Other Options

Find a plan that meets your payment needs.

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Assistance We Offer

Consumers Affordable Resource for Energy (CARE)

The CARE program was created to help make your energy bill more manageable. If enrolled in the two-year program, you will receive monthly credits toward your energy use, assistance with a past-due balance and access to energy saving tools.

Learn More About CARE

Refer to the income table below to see if your household qualifies for payment assistance.

Number of Household Members 110% - Home Heating Credit 150% - CARE, State Emergency Relief, Winter Protection Plan 200% - Helping Neighbors, Weatherization Assistance Program, Shut-off Protection Plan
1 $13,354 $18,210 $24,280
2 $18,106 $24,690 $32,920
3 $22,858 $31,170 $40,560
4 $27,610 $37,650 $50,200
5 $32,362 $44,130 $58,840
6 $37,114 $50,610 $67,480
7 $41,866 $57,090 $76,120
8 $46,618 $63,570 $84,760
Add $4,752 for each additional household member. Add $6,480 for each additional household member. Add $8,649 for each additional household member.

As a senior citizen, you qualify for the following assistance:

  • Winter Protection Plan: Pay partial charges through winter months while receiving seasonal protection from disconnection.
  • Electric Senior Citizen Bill Credits: This income assistance credit is designed to help seniors on fixed incomes. If you are eligible to receive the Electric Income Assistance credit, you will no longer receive the Electric Senior Citizen credit.
    • The Electric Senior Citizen provision is designed to help you with your electric bill by offering a monthly credit of $3.50 to your bill. Qualifying customers must meet age and income requirements and be the head of the household. If you are eligible to receive the Electric Income Assistance credit, you will no longer receive the Electric Senior Citizen credit.

Additional resources:

  • Michigan Aging & Adult Services Agency: Local Area Agencies located within communities statewide provide a variety of senior services and activities.
  • Elder Law of Michigan: Older adults and people with disabilities can get help paying for the cost of basic needs like food, medicine, healthcare, utilities, housing and taxes.

If you are currently serving in the military, we recommend:

  • Shut-off Protection – Active Duty in the Military: If you (or your spouse) are the main contact for your account and are called to full-time active military service, you may request protection from disconnection for up to 90 days. You may also request an extension by reapplying.
    • If you (or your spouse) are the customer of record and you’re called to full-time active military service, you may apply for shut-off protection for up to 90 days. You may request an extension by reapplying.
      • You must provide verification of active duty status.
      • At the end of active duty, you must notify us of your change in status.
      • You still will be required to pay for the energy you used during your participation in this program.
      • We will set up a payment plan for all past due amounts to be paid within one year.
      • To join, call us at 800-477-5050.

Additional resources:

  • Michigan Veterans Trust Fund: Provides eligible wartime veterans and their families located in Michigan with temporary energy assistance for emergencies or hardships.

If you qualify for one of the programs above, we recommend you apply for them first. If you do not qualify, we recommend the Shut-off Protection Plan.

  • Shut-off Protection Plan (SPP ): This plan provides year-round protection from shut-off for all seniors and qualifying customers:
    • An initial down payment is required.
    • Participating in a plan spreads out your annual energy costs into equal monthly payments that include your expected monthly energy use and monthly portions of your past-due balance.

To join, call us at 800-477-5050.

PUBLIC ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS

Do you need help paying a past-due bill?

If you are unable to pay or have fallen behind on your bill, you don’t have to wait. For most programs, a past-due balance is sufficient to get help.

Refer to the income table under ‘Assistance We Offer’ to see if your household qualifies for assistance. Then, explore the program links below:

Payment Plans and Other Options

Need more time? Good news. We can help you adjust your due date, make a partial payment or set up a payment arrangement.

To create a payment arrangement:

  • Sign in to your online account.
  • Select "Billing Options."
  • Under "Other Options for You" find Payment Arrangement" and select "Get Started."
  • Or, call us at 800-477-5050.

DO YOU NEED A CONSISTENT PAYMENT?

While you can’t predict Michigan’s weather, you can count on the Budget Plan to help keep your energy costs steady year round.

Divide your annual energy costs into equal monthly payments, and make your household budget easier to manage.

This plan offers convenience, peace of mind and security. While you can't predict Michigan's weather, you can count on the Budget Plan to help keep your energy costs steady year-round.

How Budget Plan Works:

  • You can join anytime.
  • Your monthly payment will be calculated based on your expected energy use for the Budget Plan year based on your service type (electric or natural gas/combination).
  • Every 4 months, we'll review your account to compare your actual energy cost with your Budget Plan payment amount. Your Budget Plan payment amount may increase or decrease if your actual energy cost was higher or lower than the cost covered by your Budget Plan payment amount.
  • Every 12 months, we'll balance your account. If you used more energy than you paid for, we'll include the difference in the new plan amount. If you used less, we'll credit your account.

Join Today:

  • Sign in to your online account.
  • Select "Billing Options."
  • Under "Other Options for You" find "Budget Plan" and select "Get Started."
  • Or call us at 800-477-5050
  • Critical Care Program: If you are on life support or have a life-threatening medical condition, you are eligible for shut-off protection. Please complete the Medical Certification Form to get started. Please note, if you are participating in life support shut-off protection, you need to re-enroll every year.
    • PLEASE NOTE: Backup generators and transportation services are not part of this program. Participation in this program does not mean your electric power will be restored sooner than others.
  • Medical Emergency Protection: If you have a qualifying, documented medical emergency, you can be protected from an energy service shut-off for up to 21 days.
  • Third Party Notification: We’ll send a copy of any shut-off notice you receive to a third party, with your written authorization. This may include a consenting friend, relative or agency.
    • Your third-party contact is not responsible for paying your bill, but may act as a liaison between you and Consumers Energy. To set up Third Party Notifications, call us at 800-477-5050.

You’re not alone when it comes to your electric bill. See if you qualify for a residential electric bill credit option and start receiving assistance each month.

  • Residential Electric Credit: Qualifying electric customers may choose only one credit plan and may save up to $84 on their annual electric bill. Call 800-477-5050 to apply.
  • Electric Income Assistance ($7 monthly credit): Have you received bill payment assistance during the past 12 months? If so, you qualify for the Electric Income Assistance provision and will receive a $7 credit on your monthly energy bills.
    • Upon notification of your eligibility from a qualifying agency, we automatically qualify you for the income assistance provision. After that, you will be responsible for providing documentation every year to maintain enrollment in the income assistance provision.
  • Electric Senior Citizen: : Are you a senior who is 65 years or older? Do you have a fixed income? The Electric Senior Citizen provision is designed to help you with your electric bill by offering a monthly credit of $3.50 to your bill. Qualifying customers must meet age and income requirements and be the head of the household. If you are eligible to receive the Electric Income Assistance credit, you will no longer receive the Electric Senior Citizen credit.

No matter your financial situation, we’re here to help you with your gas bill. Explore additional assistance options below.

  • Natural Gas Income Assistance: With the Income Assistance Provision, qualifying customers can receive a monthly credit of $11.75 on their gas bill, totaling an annual savings of $141.
    • To qualify for this provision, you must have received a Michigan Home Heating Credit (HHC) or be qualified based on income. Consumers Energy automatically qualifies gas customers for the income assistance provision upon notification of a customer’s eligibility from a qualifying agency. The customer will be responsible for providing documentation every year to maintain enrollment in the income assistance provision.
  • Homeless Shelter Discount Program: Homeless Shelters may apply to receive a 25% discount for December, January and February energy bills. For complete details on how to qualify and apply, see the form.
  • Helping Neighbors: This energy efficiency program helps qualified families at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines lower their monthly energy bills and improve comfort by increasing the efficiency of their homes.
  • Weatherization through Michigan Community Action Agencies: This weatherization program helps qualified customers receive energy efficiency upgrades to help reduce energy use and lower your energy bill.