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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
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Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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From Timetalk I purchased a Fibre Broadband Package and BT

Resolved Question:

From Timetalk I purchased a Fibre Broadband Package and BT fitted a modem on 21 August, three weeks ago. The broadband speed for the contract was up to 38Mbps and the realistic speed expected is 22 - 30Mbps. From the connection date until now I have made numerous calls and sent emails telling them that my average speed of 5Mbps is not acceptable and the fastest speed ever has been 7 Mbps. The Technical advisers have no idea what is wrong, no one answers my emails or returns my calls when promised. As the product is unfit for purpose I have asked to be released from my contract but am told that I need to speak with a manager. This is impossible. I have also asked for a MAC code so that I can move to another provider. This I am told is not possible until I have paid a cancellation fee of £200. I suggested to a young man on the end of the phone that I could counter claim for the time wasted and the inconvenience and that there was a legal obligation to let me have the MAC code but he is still not in a position where he could advise me further or help in any way. "Sorry" is all he would say but I am left paying for fast broadband which is not available and unable to change provider without the MAC code. Are there any steps I could take to make them see reason, please.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Hi.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
Are you locked into a contract for a period of time?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I think for 18 months but so far I have had no confirmation of my contract. it was done verbally on the phone on 7th August and BT fitted the modem for fibre on 21st August.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Ok. Thanks.
What did they guarantee in this contract that is not available?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

That I would receive a minimum of 22 Mbps and could expect up to 38Mbps. The highest it has ever been is 7Mbps and it is usually about 4. It is no improvement at all on what I was getting before on Standard Broadband.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Did they guarantee that? Usually there are caveats?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Well, as I understand, I was certainly promised verbally a speed of no less than 22Mbps at any time. Each advisor with whom I spoke agreed that my low speeds were unacceptable. so far I have nothing in writing but I would not be paying for fibre if I was not assured of the increased speeds it would obtain.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

i would like to have my contract cancelled as so far they have delivered nothing and my broadband package is not fit for purpose.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Ok. Thanks. Are they saying they can increase your speeds?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

The Technical Advisors say that I should have faster speeds, but that they can't help me at the moment and when I ask to speak with someone more senior they tell me that they will raise a call, but no one gets back to me. I have emailed and asked someone to call me or at least answer my email, but all I receive is an automated call. The cancellation department say they are not allowed to cancel a contract and they will ask a manager to contact me. No one does. I have already been charged, and I have paid, for a guaranteed speed of over 20Mbps.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
I know exactly the problems that you are having.
You really only have 2 options. Complain to OFCOM and I would ring them once more and tell them that unless they either release this or fix the problem, you will be making a formal complaint this afternoon.
One of the things that you have done of course has tried to deal with this over the telephone and generally if you do that all you will get is the telephone operator that is only used to dealing with run-of-the-mill stuff and not problems.
You might want to try once more in writing giving them 7 days to resolve the problem. Meanwhile, prepare your complaint to OFCOM.
The other alternative which would be much quicker although you might not want to do it and I can understand why, is to pay the £200, get out of the contract and then simply sue them in the Small Claims Court to get the money back on the basis that you paid it under duress/mistake as you had no alternative but to get out of the contract. If it cost you any other money to go to another provider, add those costs into your claim.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Jo
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 69527
Experience: Over 5 years in practice
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