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BRK - Broker

BROKER FAQs

What are the regulations regarding broker registration?

Registering parties should read and understand Public Utility Regulatory Act (PURA) §39.3555 and PUC Substantive Rules §§25.112, 25.471, and 25.486 before they consider filing an application to register as a broker.

Who must register as a broker?

A person cannot provide brokerage services, including brokerage services offered online, in Texas for compensation or other consideration unless the person is registered with the Commission as a broker. Individual employees and agents of broker firms and persons acting as mostly agents of REPs are not required to register as brokers. A retail electric provider (REP) is not permitted to register as a broker and is prohibited from knowingly providing bids or offers to persons providing brokerage services and is not registered as a broker.

Where can you find the broker registration form?

The form may be obtained from the central records division of the Commission or from the Commission's Internet website at http://puc.texas.gov/industry/electric/business/brk/brk.aspx.

Is it possible to register as a sole proprietor?

Yes. You can either register under your personal name or an assumed name. To operate under an assumed name, it must be registered with either the County Clerk's Office or Texas Secretary of State. You must attach a copy of the assumed name certificate to the registration form.

Is it permissible to use a name other than the legal name of the company registered with the Texas Secretary of State?

Yes. You can use up to four trade, commercial, or dba names in addition to the legal name. All the additional names must be registered with the Texas Secretary of State under the same legal name.

Who must sign the affidavit for the application?

An "authorized representative," who must be an owner, partner, or officer of the company doing business in Texas, must sign the application. A notary outside of Texas may notarize the application, if the notary's registration is current with the appropriate government authorities. BE SURE TO CHECK all applicable check and circle-boxes on the affidavit and throughout the form. Failure to do so can delay or invalidate the registration. The applicant must be authorized to do business in Texas and in good standing with the Texas Secretary of State. Submitting an affidavit with incorrect information may require the filing of a new affidavit.

How should the application for broker registration be submitted to the PUC?

The registering party must submit a copy of the registration form electronically using the PUC Interchange Filer. Instructions on the Interchange Filer may be found at https://www.puc.texas.gov/industry/filings/Default.aspx.

How long will it take to obtain a broker registration from the Commission?

Upon filing, the Commission will review the registration request for completeness within 20 working days of receipt of an application. The registering party will be notified of any deficiencies by mail or email and will have 10 working days from the date of notification to cure the deficiencies. If the deficiencies are not cured within ten working days, Commission Staff will notify the registrant that the application is rejected is without prejudice. Commission staff will determine whether to accept or reject the application within 60 days of the receipt of a complete application.

Can an applicant contest Commission Staff's rejection of its application?

Yes. An applicant may file a petition for formal review of the registration application in accordance with the Commission's procedural rules if its broker application is rejected by Commission Staff. The applicant has the burden of proof to establish that its application meets the requirements of PURA and Commission rules.

Does a broker registration expire?

Yes. A broker registration expires three years after the date of the assignment of a broker registration number or the registration's most recent update. Each registrant is responsible for submitting the information required to renew its registration with the Commission not less than 90 days prior to expiration date of the current registration. An expired registration is no longer valid, and the broker will be removed from the broker list on the Commission's website.

Can broker registration be suspended/revoked by the Commission?

Yes. Pursuant to 16 Texas Administrative Code (TAC) §25.112(g), broker registrations may be suspended or revoked for significant violations of PURA or Commission rules. Administrative penalties can also be imposed for violations of PURA or Commission rules.

What are the customer protection standards for brokerage services?

Brokers are required to comply with the minimum standards for customer protection as prescribed in 16 TAC §25.471. Generally, brokers are prohibited from committing fraudulent, unfair, misleading, deceptive, or anticompetitive acts and practices in the marketing, solicitation, and sale of electric service and in the administration of any terms of service for electric service. Additionally, brokers must also comply with the specific requirements regarding, customer communications, disclosures, client agent agreements, broker enrollments, proprietary client information, and customer complaint handling as stated in 16 TAC §25.486.

What is the procedure for updating company contact information?

Register for the PUCT Portal to obtain access to the company contacts application. Go to https://portal.puc.texas.gov and select the "not registered yet" prompt then fill out the form with your information. You will receive a confirmation email letting you know that your account has been activated. Log in to your account and click on "Available PUC Applications". You want to select company contact applications and proceed with the request. After the request is submitted you will be granted access to the application. A request to update contact information can be made by filing out the form and submitting it electronically.

How do I update/renew my broker registration?

To update/renew your broker registration, you must fill out the broker registration form and file it as an amendment in Project No. 49779. In section 1 of the form, check the box "This amends an existing, completed broker registration" and in the explanation section state that you are updating/renewing your broker registration. Complete the rest of the form and get the Affidavit notarized. A copy of the broker registration form must be submitted electronically using the PUC Interchange Filer.