Sky told to ban exit penalties in January for customers affected by price increases


Sky broadband and landline customers whose line rental costs increased last month have been given an extra 30-day amnesty to exit their contracts penalty-free, reports The Telegraph.

All “Sky Talk” customers were informed of the change in October and given one month to either switch to another package or cancel their service.

But after 30 complaints to Ofcom, Sky, which has around 12m customers, was ordered to extend this deadline.

As part of changes announced in October, Sky axed free weekend calls for broadband customers and increased some prices, including standard line rental to £17.40 per month from £16.40, a 6 per cent increase, taking effect on December 1.

The decision comes as Ofcom is planning new rules to let broadband customers exit contracts more easily.

Companies including BT, EE, Sky and TalkTalk will be told they have to let customers walk away from their contracts without paying onerous penalties if they don’t deliver what they promised.

Citizens Advice, the consumer body, said telecoms firms can charge up to £800 for customers if they want to end their contracts early, even when they complain of a poor signal.

Citizens Advice received 21,500 complaints about mobile phone problems in 2014.

Sky customers now have until January 31 to cancel their package.

A Sky spokesman said: “These changes mean we can offer our broadband and Talk customers even more value for money at the same time as investing in market-leading innovation and even better customer service for them.”