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What to do if an installer tries to install a Smart Meter on your home after you’ve notified your utility that you do not want a Smart Meter

Request a Deferral if you have not already

Hopefully by now you have notified your utility by certified mail that you do not want a smart meter on your home.   If you have not, you might try to apply this approach anyway, but your chances of success are very limited at best.  For instructions on how to exercise your right to opt out of the smart meter program and to download those notification letters, go to our page How to Defer the Installation of Smart Meters in Maryland.

If an installer comes to replace your meter, try to stop him or her

If, despite your notification to your utility, the installer shows up to install a meter, you should try to stop him or her.  Otherwise you will be stuck with a smart meter.  Even if the utility subsequently cooperates, all they have to do is make sure it does not broadcast.  But you have to go through the trouble of making sure it is not broadcasting.  MSMA will soon have the capacity to assist you with this measurement, but it is an extra step you will need to take.

This unwanted installation could happen because your utility failed to communicate to the installer that you had opted out.  Or it might be that they are deliberately ignoring your letter and the Public Service Commission order giving you the right to defer installation.

Tips:

  1. Explain politely but firmly that you do not want such a meter on your home and that you have given legal notice to the utility to that effect.  (Of course if you have not actually sent in the letter requesting an opt out or deferral, you cannot make this claim, but you can still do the rest of the steps here.)
  2. If that does not work you should not threaten the installer with violence or even raise your voice.  Instead calmly but firmly ask the installer for the following information:
    1. Get the proper spelling of the installer’s name
    2. Get the installer’s identification number.  This will probably be on an identification tag he or she is wearing.  If the installer has trouble understanding English and speaks Spanish better, you should show him the following phrase:  “Necesito tu nombre completo y dirección de su casa para una demanda que estoypresentando en su contra por la instalación deun medidor inteligente.”
    3. Get the  installer’s electricians license number.  There is a good chance there is none, which you should note.
    4. Lastly, explain that you are planning to file a lawsuit against both the utility and the installer, and that you plan to name  the installer personally in the lawsuit.
    5. Keep this information safe!  Note the date and time.

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