Unpaid bills Incurred by previous tenant

My current tenant is receiving letters regarding unpaid electric/gas bills incurred by the previous tenant. The electricity company is now saying that if they can’t contact the previous tenant, they will use enforcement action to recover it from me (the landlord) Can they legally do this? Their contract was with that tenant, not me. Thanks

Not if the tenant had their own account. Landlords should always ensure they close any interim account in their name with meter readings once a new tenant moves in, and give the utility company the name of the tenant. That way, even if the tenant fails to register for an account, there can be no comeback on the landlord.

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Contract with tenant every time .They are trying it on