Customer's Responsibilities and Rights

You are responsible for:

  • paying your bill by the due date;
  • letting us know before we must disconnect your service that you cannot pay all of your water bill;
  • protection of the domestic water supply to ensure drinking water does not become contaminated;
  • installing back flow prevention at your expense upon notification that a hazard exists;
  • preventing the cross connection of the water service provided by the system to any other source of water. No physical connections can be made by the customer to any other water distribution system or source other than that furnished by the system; pursuant to the Safe Drinking Water Act of 1986: TCA 68-221-701 to 68-221-720.

You have the right to:

  • seek help paying your water bill. The community agencies you contact will decide whether you are eligible for aid. COUD can tell you about community resources.
  • Ask us to make alternate pay arrangements if you are temporarily unable to pay your water bill. If you sign such an agreement with us, you give up your right to dispute the amount due under the agreement. If you do not fulfill the terms of the agreement, we may disconnect service and we will not offer you a new pay agreement before we disconnect service;
  • question whether a monthly bill is correct.

If you feel there is an error

  • If you feel one month’s bill is incorrect, please call the telephone number shown on the bill before the due date. You must take timely action. If you do not question one month’s bill within the required time period, we will conclude that you feel that month’s bill is correct.
  • If you feel a disconnection notice is in error, please call the telephone number listed on the bill or visit our office.
  • We will not disconnect service for nonpayment of the disputed portion of a bill while it is being reviewed. Your right to appeal will not expire if delay on our part makes it impossible to contact the COUD within the required time period.
  • You have the right to suspend payment of the disputed portion of a bill while the dispute procedures mentioned above are in progress.

Reasons for discontinuing service

COUD is authorized to discontinue or refuse to supply water service Without notice, if:

  • COUD finds that a hazard exists;
  • A customer’s use adversely affects supply or
  • There is evidence of tampering with metering equipment or unauthorized use.

With notice, if:

  • A customer violates or fails to comply with COUD rules and regulations;
  • A customer fails to fulfill contractual obligations;
  • A customer fails to provide reasonable access to COUD equipment;
  • A customer has not paid a delinquent account;
  • A customer fails to pay a deposit if required
  • A CUSTOMER CONNECTS MORE THAN ONE DWELLING TO EACH METER.

Paying Your Bill

Each month pay the amount due by the due date. After the due date, pay the amount due plus the late penalty.

Disconnection of Service

If your bill is past due or you do not pay a required deposit, COUD will do the following:

  1. COUD will mail you a written notice reminding you that your bill has not been paid. Your water service will be disconnected unless the past due balance is paid before the expiration date shown on the final notice.
  2. If you receive your next monthly bill before paying your prior bill, you DO NOT have an extension of time to pay your prior bill before being disconnected.

Third Party Notification

At your request, prior to receiving your final notice, COUD will notify someone you have chosen of your past due bill. This service can help prevent disconnection by alerting a designated third party to a possible problem. The third party is not responsible for paying your bill. If you would like more information on third party notification, please call COUD.

Medical Emergencies

Please notify COUD as soon as possible. COUD will delay disconnection of water service for 30 days if a physician, public health officer, or social service officer certifies in writing that discontinuing water service will worsen an existing medical emergency for you or another permanent resident of the premises where services are rendered. Please call COUD for full information. A prompt request is important. During the 30 day extension, payment of the bill must be guaranteed.

Reinstating Service

If water service is disconnected for nonpayment, here is how to have service restored:

  1. Pay the total amount due.
  2. Pay a reconnection charge.
  3. Pay a deposit, if required.

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