I've just initiated a switch to a new service provider (during my minimum term contract) because of the price rises (received email a week ago advising and can leave penalty free) and want all my TV/Broadband/Calls provided by the same provider. The new provider advises that their switch squad deals with the old supplier and that I don't need to do anything.
10 mins after processing I get an email from BT that they want to charge me for the outstanding months on my contract totalling £239.10 and want to charge me £46.17 for outstanding TV equipment charges!!
Do I need to worry or will I get updates via email and txt advising that as I can leave penalty free, the charges won't apply or should I be ringing them?
The email sent out is an automated email when an account is terminated before its minimum term is completed. It is nothing to worry about and you will not be subject to the charges provided you have done the following:-
In order to leave mid contract penalty free because of the price rise you MUST contact BT and inform them that you are going to leave.
Once you have done that your new ISP will then arrange the change over.
If you have not told BT you are leaving because of the price rise you will be liable for the early termination charges.
Out of interest, given that BT know you can leave penalty free, as they sent you an email/letter telling you, should you not be able to leave without contact, leaving that to the gaining provider?
BT have given you a free pass for 30 days, shouldn't they automatically not charge you?
Although the customer is obviously leaving by virtue of the fact that the gaining ISP has contacted the losing ISP it does not necessarily mean that the customer is leaving because of the price rise. The price rise could just be the way out when in fact the customer is leaving because of bad service etc.
Ofcom have said that ISPs must give the customer the option to leave. I would suppose that the ISP has the right to know if the customer is exercising that option.
If the customer has to contact the losing ISP it also allows the ISP to try and retain the customer by offering an incentive which it possibly could not do if the gaining ISP is involved.
BT are changing the original contract, their choice, it is your right to accept or reject the new revised contract. I don't think there is any requirement to explain why you are leaving.
If you do nothing they assume you are accepting the new contract, they don't ask you to call to accept it, so why should it be any different to leave. In OFCOM guidance it says that it is enough that the gaining provider contact the losing provider and say they are taking over, the customer is not required to make contact. If you are joining Virgin then you will but not for others.
Yes, I think the losing ISP should have the option to try and keep the customer, but equally I think its fair for the customer to choose whether they engage in that process or move on without the potential hassle of dealing with sales people trying to keep you.
I believe OFCOM rules are changing in October to improve the current setup.