Telecoms regulator consulting over whether consumers should be able to leave contracts hit by price increases mid-way through.
Ofcom may be about to offer disgruntled mobile consumers a way out of paying what are seen by many as unfair mid-contract price increases, as the telecoms regulator begins consulting over whether or not customers should be allowed to leave without penalty if hit by mid-way price hikes.
Following a review into the fairness of contracts that drew attention to several issues regarding existing guidelines, the regulator has today (January 3rd) launched a consultation on how to shield consumers from price increases that are implemented mid-way through fixed contracts for broadband, mobile and landline services.
Under Ofcom’s proposed changes, operators would still be able to raise their process in the middle of fixed-term contracts, yet customers would be allowed to exit the contract free of charge if they are not willing to accept the rise.
The consultation also looked at an opt-in option, whereby consumers would actively have to agree to any variable price contract. Ofcom is also addressing the need for guidance on how providers should interpret its rules.
Claudio Pollack, consumer group director at Ofcom, said: “Many consumers have complained to us that they are not made aware of the potential for price rises in what they believe to be fixed contract. Ofcom is consulting on rules that we propose would give consumers a fair deal in relation to mid-contract price rises.”
The consultation closes on March 14th, with a decision expected to be published in June.