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No need to fear Jack Frost in Illinois — ISBA discusses heating laws

Question:  What laws are in place to protect residents from having their heat disconnected in cold weather?

Answer:  Between December 1 and March 31, gas and electric companies cannot legally terminate heating services for non-payment unless the customer was offered and refused to enter into a payment plan, or the outdoor temperature is 32 degrees or higher. Also, the company must have notified the customer about the pending disconnection by U.S. mail at least eight days prior to the termination or delivery of a notice five days prior. Local municipalities may also have their own ordinances further outlining when heat may or may not be disconnected.       For more information about Illinois law, visit If you have a legal question, send it to   Illinois Law Now is a series of newspaper and internet posts prepared by the Illinois State Bar Association that address legal issues of interest to the public. For additional information about the law, visit