New Ofcom rules for phone and broadband providers

  TopCat® 18:44 PM 04 Jan 13
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Answered

These measures are a move in the right direction in my estimation and should make the providers think long and hard before hiking up their prices. What's your opinion on this good news? TC.

  Woolwell 18:46 PM 04 Jan 13

I suspect that it may result in higher prices at the beginning of the contract.

  lotvic 14:43 PM 05 Jan 13

I've always thought it strange that providers could up the prices in the middle of a contract. A contract by definition should be a fixed price for a fixed term.

  Phil Ocifer 12:32 PM 08 Jan 13

I think it stinks that the ISPs can raise their prices or change something we have signed up for (with a months notice (or whatever)) and tell us, the customer, that if we don't like it we can "go elsewhere".

This could be especially irksome if you have just (recently) entered an 18 or 24 month contract based on their current terms and conditions, then they "up" the price.

I haven't been affected by this, but I'm aware that it's a scenario that could occur.

In fact, my ISP (TT) has been good to me recently in that they have given me an unlimited download allowance (upped from the normal 40GB per month).

Also, they allow me to pay my line rental 12 months in advance saving around £60. Brilliant. Win Win!!

  Phil Ocifer 12:40 PM 08 Jan 13
Answer

In fact, I always believed that if the ISP changed the Ts&Cs, we could leave without penalty as they had changed "the contract" that we had signed up for. Is this assumption wrong?

The thing is, the reason they lock you into a contract of a specified period of time is to recoup the costs of the "free" modem and the engineer and other staff services (which all have to be paid for somehow - nobody does anything for nothing these days) required to take over your line and provide you with the service.

I think if there is a charge applied it should work both ways - if we leave for no other reason than a better deal, they should charge us costs for the remainder of the contract and if we leave because they change the Ts&Cs, they should compensate us.

  spuds 17:05 PM 08 Jan 13

I once had a discussion with the local Trading Standards about contracts of this nature, and perhaps considering that the contracts seemed always one sided.

Their reply was basically one of 'Not Fit For Purpose'. Prove that the supplier is not providing a reliable and promised service, and that could be your let out clause?.

My own ISP provides a number of let-outs, if you take time to look at the contract.

  spuds 17:05 PM 08 Jan 13

I once had a discussion with the local Trading Standards about contracts of this nature, and perhaps considering that the contracts seemed always one sided.

Their reply was basically one of 'Not Fit For Purpose'. Prove that the supplier is not providing a reliable and promised service, and that could be your let out clause?.

My own ISP provides a number of let-outs, if you take time to look at the contract.

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