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Broadband provider took too much money


jo & mick
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Hi all,

 

I wrote to my broadband provider at the beginning of 2006 cancelling service with them. As this was a month to month contract i was within my rights to do so. To cut a long story short in December i decided to start back up with eclipse so I rang them to get password and sign in details because it had been 12 months and I had lost them. The guy that I spoke to was very helpful and gave me all the info I needed. I then successfully signed back on to eclipse. About a week later I received a demand notice asking for 190 pounds or they would disconnect service. I rang them up and explained and after a lot of arguing they agreed that it was their mistake and the service was never disconnected in Jan 2006. They agreed that it had been an oversight in their accounts dept. As I wanted to conclude the matter it was agreed by both parties that I would pay 50% of the bill and that Decembers would be included in this payment.

I gave them my Debit card details, but as it was the Friday before christmas they said the could not process the payment but agreed to take 95.00 from my debit card on Wed 27th dec. I accepted this and finished the call.

After checking my account I found they had actually taken 225.00 instead. Sorry this has been so long winded but can anyone tell me if they can do this. Is this not theft? I didn't authorise them to take this amount, so they either took it by mistake or unlawfully. I have called them but their offices were closed. They may be very reasonable when I call on monday but if not it would be nice to have some answers to their possible arguments. Thank you very much for reading my babble and any advise would be great.

 

Mick

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Call them back and say the amount taken was not that agreed, and ask for it to be refunded immewdiately. If they do not agree, contact you back and tell them of the problem, this isn't covered by the Direct Debit guarantee, so it may not be an automatic reversal (unless it is a Visa Debit card), but call your ISP in the first instance. Next time, it might be more putend to send them a cheque.

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Also, if they admitted it was their mistake, why did you agree to pay 50%? If it's their mistake and they have charged you for service you have not received then you should not have to pay them a penny.

Opinions given herein are made informally by myself as a lay-person in good faith based on personal experience. For legal advice you must always consult a registered and insured lawyer.

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It sounds stupid I know, but I only agreed to pay 50% because they said the service had not been switched off when I asked for it to be as supposedly 'they had not received my letter' cancelling the service. They admitted that it was their fault that they had taken 12 months to chase up any payment from myself and said because of this they would reduce the bill by 50%. I probably could have stood my ground and insisted I pay nothing. The only reason I agreed to pay was that we had bought my son a new PC for christmas and obviously needed the broadband service to be on and did not want my son to be disappointed. My thoughts were just pay it then change providers after new year, as 23.95 per month was not cheap anyway. I am going to ask them for a full refund as the extra money they helped themselves to was to cover 2 direct debits, which did not get paid and therefore cost me 78.00. I really just wondered who I would go to next if they do not pay the money back, do I threaten them with the financial onbudsman or even the police because they took that money without my permission. I am grateful for any advise. Thank you.

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Sadly the police and FO wouldn;t get you anywhere. As you cancelled by letter, do you still have a copy of it you can send them, this time by Recorded Delivery? You could then say that after serious consideration, you reject the 50% offer as you terminated correctly and whilst you are happy to reconnect, this will NOT be the case if your are expected (by them) to pay for services not received.

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