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Contract Cancellation Error

The complaint
Charity tried to close their internet account, but it was kept open for a further two months.
The outcome
Accepted offer to waive the two month's charges.

The issue

Woman in office attireMelanie Wu* represented a charity that had trouble cancelling its internet service with Silver Telco*.

Melanie told the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman that the charity had been Silver Telco’s customer for long enough to be out of contract. In early September she asked Silver Telco to cancel the charity’s internet service at the end of the current bill cycle (which was 24 September).  The charity had an account manager at Silver Telco who confirmed in writing this would happen. 

Soon after, another representative from Silver Telco called Melanie. This representative said the account manager had made a mistake – the charity had to give Silver Telco 60 days’ notice to cancel the service, which meant the internet service would be active until 30 November. Silver Telco  sent the charity a bill for October which Melanie paid. 

Without warning the internet service was disconnected in early October. 

The investigation

When Melanie received another bill for November, she complained to Silver Telco and was dissatisfied with its response. She decided to raise her complaint with our office. 

After Melanie’s complaint remained unresolved, our Dispute Resolution Officer contacted Silver Telco about the disconnection and billing charges. 

The outcome

Silver Telco offered to waive approximately $9,000 in charges from the October and November bills. Silver Telco explained an internal communications  error had caused the problems. Melanie accepted Silver Telco’s offer and the charity stayed with Silver Telco for its landline services.

*Names have been changed to protect privacy.

Here's how other cases were managed

Complaint
Payment details were accidently deleted from the customers account.
Outcome
Details were restored and a discount applied to the account.
Complaint
Mobile coverage upgrades promised were not being delivered.
Outcome
Early termination fees for affected customers were waived.