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Legality of service level guarantee

IanD
Grafter
Posts: 149
Registered: 01-08-2007

Legality of service level guarantee

Are there any legal experts on here who can advise on the legality of the so called service level guarantee?

I'd have thought that if an ISP (such as PlusNet) were failing to provide a service fit for the purpose, then they would be in some form of breach of the Sale of Goods Act or something similar.

Seems to be a standard get out clause that an ISP (such as PlusNet) like to bandy around which effectively means they don't have to give you anything back for your money. I'd be very surprised if this was legal and would like to know if it could be challenged.

Any advice on the situation under Scottish Law would also be appreciated.

Let's just say I've been fobbed off by an ISP (such as PlusNet) over their continued failure to provide the service I am paying for.
8 REPLIES
N/A

Legality of service level guarantee

The internet "breaks", so do servers.

Few hosting firms offer anything above 99.5% "uptime" and where firms do, they will usually state they provide a free month's use, rather than compensation which may compare with losses from not having e-commerce running (for example).

I think the standard "best effort" clause will appear with any ISP, but if you find another ISP which does give an SLA at a price below 25 quid a month, please let us know.

(Sorry IANAL, so cannot give any answers on the question of legality, but I bet there'd have been a case brought by someone in the legal field if they thought they could win.)
IanD
Grafter
Posts: 149
Registered: 01-08-2007

Legality of service level guarantee

Occasional problems are quite acceptable and as you say are going to happen.

Nobody is going to have a problem with these and a good ISP will communicate with its customers to keep them aware of problems and what they have done.

Ongoing long term problems are a different issue and this is where my complaint (along with quite a few others) lies. In this case the ISP has fundamentaly failed to deliver the service they have been contracted to provide. This is the area where I'd like to get some legal advice on as I don't think it is right that you can pay for something and non receive it.

I've got no problem with compensation in the form of a month or however long free and indeed would expect that rather than a refund. Good for customer goodwill too and will make you more likely to refer others if you've been treated well when you've had a problem.
winnipeg1823
Grafter
Posts: 156
Registered: 08-08-2007

Legality of service level guarantee

In the past 30 days I have had no ADSL signal for over 20 days. One of the responses from Plusnet was "Broadband is not a guaranteed service"

I have printed it off for future reference
GersFans
Grafter
Posts: 191
Registered: 30-07-2007

Legality of service level guarantee

I seen a post on the forums where someone has contacted both OFCOM and BBC Watchdog, maybe piggy back on those complaints and take the matter to higher sources.

I don't know where in Scotland you are, but my first phone call would be to the Consumer advice offices. Find the phone number in your local Thomson or yellow pages.

I also had that reply, "broadband is not a guaranteed connection blah blah blah..", and this was with over 100+ disconnections in a 4 hr period..

I would love to see in writing just what PN are guaranteeing for your [our] money..and if 100's of disconnections is an acceptable service.
Community Veteran
Posts: 4,729
Registered: 04-04-2007

Legality of service level guarantee

The best place to ask your question would be uk.legal.moderated on usenet.

You are correct in saying;
Quote
Are I'd have thought that if an ISP (such as PlusNet) were failing to provide a service fit for the purpose, then they would be in some form of breach of the Sale of Goods Act or something similar.
I do not believe it’s the sale of goods act, but I can not remember the name of the act.

The problem comes in defining what is “Merchandisable quality”?

Chilly
N/A

Legality of service level guarantee

While PN can say its not guaranteed, it does have to be 'fit for purpose' - and not having ADSL 20 days in 30 days would not be seen as 'fit for purpose' by any reaonsably sane person.
IanD
Grafter
Posts: 149
Registered: 01-08-2007

Legality of service level guarantee

Thanks Chilly,

I'll see if I can find out more and post back. Any further replies more than welcome and if any legal people have been enjoying the sunshine over the weekend are are now back I'm sure there are loads of users who would appreciate your thoughts.
N/A

Legality of service level guarantee

Quote

I've got no problem with compensation in the form of a month or however long free and indeed would expect that rather than a refund. Good for customer goodwill too and will make you more likely to refer others if you've been treated well when you've had a problem.


The proceedure would be as follows;

Small Claims Court: Linky