Consumers in the UK who are taking out landline, broadband or mobile contracts will be enabled to terminate them without penalty if their providers attempt to increase the monthly subscription charges. The latest rules have been put into effect following an Ofcom review regarding the fairness of contract price terms, in which it was discovered that a large number of consumers were caught unaware of the price rises, in what they thought were fixed price agreements.
The new rules of Ofcom will come into effect during this week and this means that if the provider wants to increase the monthly subscription price which was agreed by the customer during sale, users have to be given a notice of the increase at least one month in advance, in addition to being allowed to terminate the contract without any penalty.
The new guidelines have also stated that any changes in the contract terms, pricing or otherwise must be stated clearly and transparently. Ofcom announced that it will keep an eye on providers’ application of the new guidance, as well as customer complaints closely in order to evaluate the effectiveness of the new protection.
The regulator said that it will also conduct research, including mystery shopping in an attempt to assess the transparency of the contractual information which is provided to customers by providers at the point of sale.
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