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BT trying to tie my mother into a new 12 month term as she DIDN'T reply to their renewal letter!


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A sneaky one this.

 

BT sent my mother a renewal notice stating that if she didn't respond they will assume that all was good and that she would be contracted to another twelve months. She has since tried to cancel, to no avail via the call centre.

 

Now I know that there is no provision in law for silence to deemed as an acceptable way for a contract to be accepted. The authority for this is: Felthouse v Bindley (1862) EWHC CP J 35

 

I was wondering if anyone has had any experience in dealing with a situation like this before I start writing to BT on behalf of my mother!

 

Thanks guys!

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The terms do state that the supplier (BT) will continue the service and auto-renew every 12 months. They advised OFCOM that they will wherever possible write to the customer and confirm the impending renewal, however there is no requirement (formal or otherwise) for them to do so. The same hold true for the consumer, who is expected to benefit by being able to make calls off-peak at no cost from Monday to Friday in exchange for this lock-in.

 

The crux of the matter is the cancellation - you can write, email or call requesting that the arrangement ends and your line reverts to free weekend calls (which is designated off peak). Until she receives confirmation from BT that her tariff has been amended, there there will be no change. The window of opportunity to cancel is just 4 weeks, so if there has been no acknowledgement she needs to pursue this giving the dates and times of the calls made requesting cancellation. It would not be permitted to claim tht calls had been made and nothing done, as BT could challenge this by requesting proof.

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They've had their phoneline for years, I cannot see any legal reason why they would be able to tie them into another twelve month term. They have not signed anything for over twenty years.

 

I think we will start with a SAR and go from there.

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Doesn't matter. They will have been asked and opted in to the lock in if they accepted the free weeknight calls package. It has nothing to do with how long thry've had phone service or if they've signed anything. Agreeing verbally or ticking a box on a promotional offer for the free calls is all that is required. You'll need to clarify this before any formal complaint. Most people accept the free calls package forgetting of the rolling commitment.

 

Why waste £10 on a SAR? All this will show as "Y" for the free calls option, nothing more!

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These 12 month rolling contracts have caused quite a stir, and many people get caught out by the subtleties of the language "12 month rolling contract" can be snook into the conversation easily using telesales techniques and small print is generally just that... I sincerely wish you good luck with this one sequenci, you'll have an uphill battle as Ofcom has already approved them.

If in doubt, contact a qualified insured legal professional (or my wife... she knows EVERYTHING)

 

Or send a cheque or postal order payable to Reclaim the Right Ltd.

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I'll give it a go. It's the best I can do.

 

As far as I'm aware, my mother has never spoken to anyone at BT on the telephone. All they have done is sent a letter which she didn't respond to. The caselaw is quite clear but I'm guessing BT will have some other stupid ideas!

 

I'll keep you guys informed!

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This may be of some use.

http://www.btplc.com/Thegroup/RegulatoryandPublicaffairs/Codeofpractice/Consumercodeofpractice/BTResidentialCodeofPractice.pdf

 

Page 17 onward has some useful information.

 

If you follow their complaints procedure as highlighted and the complaint does go to Otelo there are 2 thoughts on this... one is that they are a toothless qango and the other is the fact that it costs BT for a complaint to be heard by Otelo, so personally I set out what I will accept as resolution and if they are unwilling to settle, I wish for a "DEADLOCK" letter so I can escalate my complaint. Now my 2 complaints have been in the region of £30 and £50 (one was a phone that was locked to the network when it was sold as unlocked, and I returned it for my money back, and the other was an unlock code that was supposed to be free after I had been with the network for a year, which I had.) both of these complaints were settled to my satisfaction. Hope your mother has a similar outcome.

If in doubt, contact a qualified insured legal professional (or my wife... she knows EVERYTHING)

 

Or send a cheque or postal order payable to Reclaim the Right Ltd.

to

923 Finchley Road London NW11 7PE

 

 

Click here if you fancy an email address that shows you mean business! (only £6 and that will really help CAG)

 

If you can't donate, please use the Internet Search boxes on the CAG pages - these will generate a small but regular income for the site

 

Please also consider using the

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Were they ever on SupportLine/Low User Rental Rebate (LURR) and then transferred to the satandard tariff as they did not fit the criteria of BT Basic? If so, the letter confirming the switch to the standard tariff also supplied the offer of free E&W calls bu tick-box. By not doing this, is was free W calls only. So as an opt-in, BT will need to confirm how they managed to opt in if they were unaware of it. Of course, if they are also charged for Evening calls, shes got them by the short and curlies.

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Hey Buzby, they've been on the same price plan for years! I don't think they've ever deviated from the standard package, I'm seeing them at the weekend so will know more then. I'll be sure to let you all know!

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I half expect one evening they got a call stating they were ellegable for free evening calls, and BT would give them this for 12 months, and at the end of that 12 months they'd automatically renew it for them unless they contact them to say otherwise....

If in doubt, contact a qualified insured legal professional (or my wife... she knows EVERYTHING)

 

Or send a cheque or postal order payable to Reclaim the Right Ltd.

to

923 Finchley Road London NW11 7PE

 

 

Click here if you fancy an email address that shows you mean business! (only £6 and that will really help CAG)

 

If you can't donate, please use the Internet Search boxes on the CAG pages - these will generate a small but regular income for the site

 

Please also consider using the

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I half expect one evening they got a call stating they were ellegable for free evening calls, and BT would give them this for 12 months, and at the end of that 12 months they'd automatically renew it for them unless they contact them to say otherwise....

 

That may well be true! I'm off down there tomorrow so will try and get to the bottom of it all!

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