Billing and Account FAQs

Review some of the most common questions we receive regarding billing, payments and your account. If you don't see your question here, just call us at (206) 684-3000 and ask a customer service representative.

If you have never had an account with us, you may start service online. You will be prompted to answer questions about previous residences in order to verify your identity. This is required under the Fair and Accurate Credit Transaction Act (FACT). Or, you can call (206) 684-3000. If you have had a City Light account in the past, you can start service online or call (206) 684-3000.

Your first bill will include a new service charge of $23 to cover administrative costs of starting service at your new address.

To permanently close your City Light account, you can notify us online or contact a customer service representative at (206) 684-3000. You can also visit a Payment Center to close your account in person. Make sure to let us know what date you'd like service to be stopped.

Most residential customers receive a bill every two months. The bill shows your energy usage for the two-month billing period and the rate charged based on your service area and time of year (winter or summer). If you are a new customer and do not receive your first bill within three months after opening your account, please call us at (206) 684-3000 Monday-Friday, 8:00 am-5:00 pm to avoid late fees. Once you receive your first bill, we encourage you to set up e-billing to save you time and help reduce waste.

If you feel your bill is incorrect or you've received a bill that is much higher than normal, please contact us right away at (206) 684-3000. We will investigate and help you understand the charges on your bill or make corrections as necessary.

If it is determined that you need to set up a payment arrangement or you qualify for short-term payment assistance, our customer representatives can help. You can also see how to understand your bill for more information.

For bill disputes, we have four levels of review:

  1. A Customer Service Representative reviews your bill and adjusts any billing errors or explains the charges.
  2. You can ask to speak to a Customer Service Supervisor, who will review the bill and any details you provide. If adjustments are approved, the supervisor will make the necessary adjustments. If you disagree with the supervisor's decision, you can request a review by a Customer Service Manager.
  3. The Customer Service Manager will review the bill and details you provide and either support the decisions already made or make a new decision and make adjustments as necessary. If you disagree with the Customer Service Manager's decision, you may request a review by the Hearing Officer.
  4. A Hearing Officer review is only used when all previous channels have been already used. You must file an appeal in writing within 15 calendar days after completion of the Customer Service Manager review.

If you are unable to pay your full bill by the due date and qualify for assistance, there are two options:

  1. We can help you set up payment arrangements to pay your bill over a specified period of time; or
  2. We can help you get short-term payment assistance to help you pay your bill in full through our Project Share program or Emergency Low Income Assistance programs.

You may also be qualified for the Utility Discount Program that lowers your electric bills by 60% and your water, sewer and garbage bills by 50%. See if you are eligible.

Signing up for e-billing is easy. Simply set up or login to your online account to sign up for e-billing or automatic payments allowing you to automatically pay your bill with a credit card or bank account.