ISP legality

  orlandogreenback 20:52 20 Mar 2004

I decided to sign up to an ISP that shall remain nameless (for now) just after Christmas. Trouble was the dialler software led my whole system a merry dance, I couldn't connect and the whole thing went down like a lead balloon. I cancelled my subscription, erased all the software and went on to something else, firing tesco a letter that asserted I shouldn't be charged as I hadn't actually received any service. Now, not only did they charge me for the experience, but 3 months later they've popped up on my bill again, despite it being quite impossible to have used the service without the software. Where do I stand guys? I know they can't get away with the latest charge but were they within their rights to charge me the first time even though I couldn't get any service from them? Either way they're getting their name and behaviour reported to a higher power. Thanks for the advice in advance, from a very steamed up orlando...

  spuds 21:14 20 Mar 2004

If you signed a twelve month contract, then you will need to look at the contract very carefully. You cannot just cancel your contract unless it had let-out clauses like 'satisfaction guaranteed or your money back' etc.

Write again to the ISP informing them of the problem that you had, and ask them for further advice and guidance.You may find, that they are legally entitled to receive payment from you, and if so, they will still take payments via your specified payment arrangement.

See what they say, you may need to contact a solicitor or trading standards for further clarification.

  Forum Editor 22:51 20 Mar 2004

is based on a monthly payment system, and you may cancel at any time before the next due monthly payment date.

The payments are due in advance, so if you signed up on say, 1st January, you will pay until 1st February at that time. Provided you cancel the agreement before 1st February you will not be charged for the next month. You aren't entitled to a refund because you didn't use the service - tens of thousands of people do use it successfully.

Does that help?

  Forum Editor 07:19 22 Mar 2004

your direct debit by the way?

  simonp1 07:29 22 Mar 2004

Did they confirm that you had actually reference number....

  orlandogreenback 18:14 22 Mar 2004

there was no confirmation, no contact from them at all; however, the charge was absent from february's bill and has only reappeared in march. It was all done via credit card and not direct debit, thank god. Needless to say I'm not paying it.
I thought the first month's refund was a long shot, but the point isn't that I didn't use it; it's that I couldn't, and it massively disrupted my system to add insult to injury. I know it probably happens day in day out, but the logic of paying for a service you're unable to receive evades me. Anyway, I've written them a stiff letter and asked visa to investigate. Thanks all!

  Forum Editor 19:04 22 Mar 2004

perhaps you'll let us know what happens?

  tonyholbury 19:37 22 Mar 2004

You should try tiscali, first the 3x broadband was 'unavailable' due to lack of takeup, then they charged me £50 for the connection when 5x should have been £25, now I cannot access their system to check my bill and they have the cheek to change the billing system, this by the way is from the start of december 2003.

  tonyholbury 19:38 22 Mar 2004

PS I hav'nt got my £25 back yet I think but cannot check due to system being rubbish.

  orlandogreenback 21:31 22 Mar 2004

Makes me feel a touch whiny, tonyholbury...
I guess you never know what you're gonna get; probably everyone's had a bad experience somewhere. Will keep you up to date.

  orlandogreenback 22:02 30 Mar 2004

Well, yesterday I get a call from asking me to confirm my cancellation. That's right, the cancellation I notified them of (via e-mail and a letter) in January. Apparently they received neither, but mysteriously did get my latest. Funny, huh? According to the smug git I spoke to, you need to provide your security word to cancel; this has duly been done, but not without thirty days notice, which will (guess what?) mean being billed another month for a service I don't receive, a service which has, according to, been up and running on my computer all this time, despite no evidence of any kind of charge in my February visa bill, and despite the fact that they surely must be able to determine who is online using their service and who isn't. So there you have it. Suggestions of any kind would be useful. I do know one thing; I'm not done with this lot, because at the end of the day what they've done is essentially stealing.

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