Because of the severe weather last week across North Texas, your electric bill may be significantly higher than usual. Oil and gas attorney Chrysta Castañeda says the first thing you should do is turn off auto-pay options on your bill. She says this will give you time to contact your energy provider, understand what you owe along with how your bill is calculated, and protest it if you so choose. If the contract between providers and generation companies allows them to pass on the costs to the retail customer, the electric generation companies will pass it along. That’s a downside to a deregulated market.