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Bullied into staying with plusnet because of charges for leaving.

juliab
Newbie
Posts: 5
Registered: 14-03-2018

Bullied into staying with plusnet because of charges for leaving.

I have found a cheaper provider after my contract with plusnet ended but told I will be charged £30 to leave. My contract ended in January and I've been charged full price since. Plusnet has not been able to match the price by the other provider I have found so either I pay £30 to leave or stay and pay a higher price per month. The new contract I received when I renewed does not mention anything about £30 charge for the 14 day cool off period but the advisor on chat claimed this would have been in my contact last year. Would the terms of that contract still be viable after it ended? I will leave plusnet on principle after this. I am very disappointed after the first year as there were no issues until now. The new contract means paying an extra £5 per month than I was paying last year and the other provider, also. 

11 REPLIES
Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
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Registered: 21-04-2017

Re: Bullied into staying with plusnet because of charges for leaving.

Sorry to hear that.

The £30 cessation charge isn't related to a contract itself as it does apply when you're out of contract. It's only applicable if the broadband equipment (specifically belonging to BT Wholesale) at the exchange is ceased.

 

Commons reasons include cancelling your services outright without moving to another provider, or moving to a provider which uses their own equipment at the exchange. More info can be found over here.

 

This charge is mentioned in your welcome e-mail here when you first joined us.

It's also mentioned in your new contract ticket here.

We also explain this in our cancellations policy here.

 

I hope this helps clarify things.

If this post resolved your issue please click the 'This fixed my problem' button
 Anoush Mortazavi
 Plusnet Help Team
juliab
Newbie
Posts: 5
Registered: 14-03-2018

Re: Bullied into staying with plusnet because of charges for leaving.

I am moving to another provider, and I have checked the new emails and there is nothing about a £30 leaving charge. I wasn't told about the charge either when I enquired about leaving after a 14 day cooling off period yesterday after setting up a new contract and before I realized how much I had been overcharged for the year. This has not been made clear at all. If I'd have known this I would never have signed up with plusnet. I'm not surprised the price of the other provider wasn't matched as this is clearly a sticking point...the advisor even mentioned that I would be better off remaining with plusnet because of this charge and despite paying more per month. This is not very good customer service!

Moderator
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Re: Bullied into staying with plusnet because of charges for leaving.

Moderator's note by Dick (Strat): This thread is now in the appropriate board.

Customer and Forum Moderator.

Community Veteran
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Re: Bullied into staying with plusnet because of charges for leaving.

Who was the other provider you were looking at?

jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
   Why I have left Plusnet (warning: long post!)   
Broadband: Andrews & Arnold Home::1 (FTTC 80/20)
Line rental: Pulse 8 Home Line Rental (£13/month)
Mobile: iD mobile (£4/month)
juliab
Newbie
Posts: 5
Registered: 14-03-2018

Re: Bullied into staying with plusnet because of charges for leaving.

Talk Talk who don't use a BT line. I was with Sky who also used a BT line but wasn't charged when I left. 

Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
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Re: Bullied into staying with plusnet because of charges for leaving.

Thanks for getting back in touch with us.

 

I'm sorry to hear you feel that we've not made it clear.

 

The tickets I've linked you above were sent by e-mail at the time. Near the bottom we advise of the possible cessation charge. We also advise of the possible fee in two places on our Help & Support pages.

 

Just to clarify if applicable it's a charge we pass on from our wholesale supplier.

 

the advisor even mentioned that I would be better off remaining with plusnet because of this charge and despite paying more per month. This is not very good customer service!

I'll listen to the call and I'll pass feedback on internally where appropriate.

If this post resolved your issue please click the 'This fixed my problem' button
 Anoush Mortazavi
 Plusnet Help Team
Superuser
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Re: Bullied into staying with plusnet because of charges for leaving.

The charge in question is raised by BT Wholesale to cover the cost of disconnecting your line from their equipment and connecting it to a supplier who uses their own equipment in the exchange - in this case - Talk Talk's equipment.  Personally I agree with you that this cost should not be recovered via the losing ISP (in this case Plusnet) where a service is migrated to a LLU provider.  In the case of a total cease of service, there is no other party to pick up the charge.

However where you are choosing to migrate to a different supplier, the cost should be borne by the LLU ISP gaining you as a customer.  It should then be up to them to decide to absorb that cost as part of the price of gaining a new customer or passing it on to you as a connection charge.  Some ISPs refund the consequential costs of changing - you might care to ask Talk Talk to recompense you for your losses in changing supplier.

There are of course many other ISPs you could have chosen which would not have incurred the additional BT Wholesale costs.  This cost arises directly out of you making the decision to use a LLU supplier.

If you really want to infer "bulling to stay" then you need to look at the Ofcom approved practices and charges which allows BT Wholesale to levy charges for switching phone lines between 'native' and 'LLU' equipment or just for disconnecting the broadband port on a line.  That is where the arm twisting is really taking place - a place where the consumer voice is not heard, far they have no relationship with BT Wholesale and Ofcom, who are supposed to protect the end user, does not listen to end users.

As for being cheaper to stay, you have to ask yourself if moving saves you more than £2.50 per month over 12 months?  If it does, then the advice was flawed, if your savings are less (assuming you have not down graded) then the advice was sound.  You have not mentioned anything about the Plusnet offer - it could be the case that you are a 'Market 1' customer for which Plusnet doe snot include in the "low cost" area pricing structure.

Edit: Cross-post @Gandalf says less and types faster!

juliab
Newbie
Posts: 5
Registered: 14-03-2018

Re: Bullied into staying with plusnet because of charges for leaving.

Thank you for your reply. I'm still learning about broadband..I didn't know until yesterday that plusnet use BT, I left BT years ago because of their practices. I'm a low user but homebound due to illness most of the time so need the internet for outside connection. My finances are tight need to find the cheapest option. Being charged to leave is causing problems for me. I don't know why plusnet won't match the price I've been offered by talk talk..not that I'd stay after this experience. One adviser was less than helpful. I shall contact talk talk and explain to see what they will do. 

Superuser
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Re: Bullied into staying with plusnet because of charges for leaving.

Hi Julia,

I should have said before - a warm welcome to the forums.

Yes there can be a lot of confusion around understanding "BT" and "using BT".  "BT" is a gathering of may clans and like clans there's often little love lost between them.  For what applies here, the following helps to explain...

  • BT Openreach (BTOR) supplies and maintains all of the wires between your home an the exchange - WITH THE EXCEPTION of those used by Virgin Media and a few other localised providers
  • BT Wholesale (BTw) provide internet services over the equipment provided by BTOR to many retail ISPs
  • In some exchanges, BTOR also allow other parties to use the phone line re-connected to other (non-BT) equipment - this is called LLU

BT (retail) and Plusnet are distinct parties, both using WHOLESALE broadband services provided by "BT", as do a significant number of other ISPs - the all use "BT".

Sky and Talk Talk are the largest LLU operators, who do not use BTw services, but do use BTOR's local copper network.  Switching your bit of that network to their exchange equipment is where the 'cease' fee arises.

Virgin Media has their own infra-structure quite devoid of BT.

When a user thinks of avoiding BT, they are in fact generally referring to BT RETAIL who are the brand carrying customer facing service provider.

I am surprised that you cannot get a competitive offer from Plusnet - I have just moved a user from TT to Plusnet and without the new-user discounts, they were cheaper than TT.  Though it needs to be said that TT had "up sold" this user far more than they really needed.  For many users, the benefits of more expensive super fast fibre are never needed.  Web browsing, doing email and a bit of TV streaming does not need super fast fibre, ADSL is more than adequate.

cyclome
Newbie
Posts: 4
Registered: 28-08-2013

Re: Bullied into staying with plusnet because of charges for leaving.

I am leaving Plusnet after a long time for a LLU (non BT) supplier and noticed my account had this qualification added, though all I had been notified of was a charge if ceasing or moving to cable (Virgin).  I raised a complaint and Plusnet replied very promptly and clearly:

The only time the £30 charge would be applicable would be if you were to simply cease your service with ourselves without transferring elsewhere,

 

They also accepted

the wording is confusing, rest assured that the trouble this has caused is being taken on board so that going forward we can ensure our future communications are clearer.

 

Community Veteran
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Registered: 10-04-2007

Re: Bullied into staying with plusnet because of charges for leaving.

Do you think it appropriate that Plusnet should pay for you to leave? Most people would accept that this is not fair because effectively all the other Plusnet users would be paying for people who leave.

Plusnet DO NOT gain from the £30 charge - they are simply passing on the charge that is levied on them by BT for disconnecting your Plusnet service. They only pass on the charge to you if they are charged. Generally it is if you terminate your service altogether or move to a LLU provider.

The reason for this lunacy can be laid at the feet of OFCOM who came up with this daft scheme - it is totally outside the control of Plusnet.

jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
   Why I have left Plusnet (warning: long post!)   
Broadband: Andrews & Arnold Home::1 (FTTC 80/20)
Line rental: Pulse 8 Home Line Rental (£13/month)
Mobile: iD mobile (£4/month)