Direct Energy, one of Texas’ largest power providers, says it offers customers an “easier way to pay for electricity.”

But consumer advocates are raising concerns that enrolling in prepaid electricity plans could leave low-income Texans vulnerable to hidden fees and sudden electricity shutoffs — and without access to public assistance that agencies may offer to a customer who falls behind on traditional payments.

It’s the latest debate about whether consumers have enough information and protections in a deregulated power market that allows most Texans to choose their provider.


Keep reading at the Texas Tribune.