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Seven day cooling off period -

Community Veteran
Posts: 3,486
Registered: 02-10-2008

Seven day cooling off period -


I've just read an article which says that :
"The new regulations mean that businesses that sell goods or services at peoples homes must give their customers a seven day cooling off period, during which time the customer can cancel without penaties.
This period begins when the customer recives a written notice of their riight to cancel the contract. If no such notice is provided, then the cooloing off period continues until seven days after such notice is provided."
So presumably this applies to people signing up for new or amended ISP services ?.
I'm not sure if this is UK wide - or just England & Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland.
I assume it's UK - as it's a European Directive.
http://www.ukecc.net/sub.asp?id=206
17 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
Thanks: 1,027
Fixes: 62
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Seven day cooling off period -

If it applies there is a simple solution but people won't like it.
When you sign up for an ISP the first thing they do is send you the written right to cancel the contract by email and then do nothing which will cost them money until after 7 days.
scootie
Grafter
Posts: 4,799
Registered: 03-11-2007

Re: Seven day cooling off period -

i havent read the new rule but is it not just same as old one which applyed to people/companys selling you somthing in your own home/front door meaning the company person needs to be pshyically on your propety selling to you for the 7 day rule to apply.
like those electric bed people that come round to peoples houses and do pressure selling on pensioners
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
Thanks: 1,027
Fixes: 62
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Seven day cooling off period -

The actual wording is
Quote
When purchasing services consumers are given the same rights to cancel the contract however the cooling off period begins the day after the service is agreed or the day that the necessary information is received (whichever is later). The trader must provide the consumer with additional information if the service is due to start within the cooling off period. The consumer must be told that if they agree for the service to start within the cooling off period the contract then cannot be cancelled once performance of the service has begun.
and it is part of the distance selling regulations
pd
Grafter
Posts: 235
Registered: 09-05-2008

Re: Seven day cooling off period -

It is covered in the T&C at http://www.plus.net/info2/legal/index.html under the heading 'Your rights to cancel .....'
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,699
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Seven day cooling off period -

For the sake of completeness, regulation 13(1) (a) states:
Quote
Exceptions to the right to cancel
13. — (1) Unless the parties have agreed otherwise, the consumer will not have the right to cancel the contract by giving notice of cancellation pursuant to regulation 10 in respect of contracts—
(a) for the supply of services if the supplier has complied with regulation 8(3) and performance of the contract has begun with the consumer’s agreement before the end of the cancellation period applicable under regulation 12;

Regulation 8(3) talks about the notification of the cancellation rights in writing "or  another durable medium"  I'm afraid pd that a web site isn't considered durable (as we've seen over the last few days, sections can appear and disappear on a whim), so the web page on its own wouldn't be enough.  An email containing the terms and conditions would be.  I can't remember if I got an email like that, my activation was a very long time ago.
John
James
Grafter
Posts: 21,036
Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Seven day cooling off period -

John - You've already agreed to those terms and conditions, either during the signup process, or by our notification of the changes to terms and conditions (last year) which were emailed to everyone.
I appreciate and agree that merely having them on a website is not enough, but in order to sign up for our products (which includes account changes) you have to agree to them before placing an order.
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,699
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Seven day cooling off period -

@Jamesh
I'm not arguing.  As I said I don't remember the email, but that doesn't mean I didn't get one.  Presumably from what you're saying, if I moved to one of the new products, I would get an email saying that it was going to happen, which would include a copy of the T&C's.
John
edited to remove a possibly contentious point.
James
Grafter
Posts: 21,036
Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Seven day cooling off period -

John - Not quite.
When you change your product (or if you sign up for a new one) there's a tick box that needs to be selected which state that you have agreed to the terms and conditions (which are shown below on the same page) before you can complete the sign up or product change.
If you sign up over the phone, the CSC will give you a breakdown of the terms and conditions as well as putting them on a ticket on your account.
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,699
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Seven day cooling off period -

Quote from: hulls

Regulation 8(3) talks about the notification of the cancellation rights in writing "or  another durable medium"  I'm afraid pd that a web site isn't considered durable (as we've seen over the last few days, sections can appear and disappear on a whim), so the web page on its own wouldn't be enough.  An email containing the terms and conditions would be.  I can't remember if I got an email like that, my activation was a very long time ago.
John

That's where it falls down I'm afraid.  Cancellation rights must be notified in writing (i.e on paper) or some other durable medium such as an email.
It's not sufficient to say that someone ticked the box to say they'd read them (no-one ever does), or that they were given a verbal breakdown of them (people never listen).  The legislation is quite specific (and it's been tested in court) in writing, or by email is ok, verbally or on a website (or for that matter by text) isn't.
It's quite easy to comply.  When you send the confirmation email to customers, include a copy of the T&Cs either in the email itself, or as a pdf attachment.
John
James
Grafter
Posts: 21,036
Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Seven day cooling off period -

Hi John,
For online sign ups, they receive a welcome email, which refers them to the terms and conditions.
Otherwise, if they call up and sign up or upgrade, we'll send them in a ticket, which results in an email being sent.
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,699
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Seven day cooling off period -

Quote from: Jameseh

For online sign ups, they receive a welcome email, which refers them to the terms and conditions.
Otherwise, if they call up and sign up or upgrade, we'll send them in a ticket, which results in an email being sent.

Hi James, sorry to be a pain about this, but referring to the T&Cs isn't sufficient.  The requirement is that the customer is given a copy of their cancellation rights in (I'm sorry to keep repeating it) writing or some other durable medium.
I suspect the text of your welcoming email contains something like: "If you wish to cancel this order ..."
If you like, you could confirm it with your local Trading Standards people.  I know they're pretty good up there.
John 
James
Grafter
Posts: 21,036
Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Seven day cooling off period -

Thanks John.
I'll confirm.
Community Veteran
Posts: 3,486
Registered: 02-10-2008

Re: Seven day cooling off period -

Thanks James,
In pointing this out - I wasn't trying to be awkeward  Smiley  - honest.
But I didn't remember seeing anything like it in the welcoming email. So I thought it might be adviseable to check with your legal / commercial people.
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Seven day cooling off period -

Does James Know who John Works For  Cool Cool Cool