Comcast will shell out $700,000 in refunds and terminate money owed for much more than 20,000 customers in Massachusetts as component of a settlement, subsequent allegations that the firm utilised deceptive advertisements about prolonged-phrase cable contracts, the condition legal professional basic mentioned Tuesday.
The settlement revolves about allegations that Comcast did not disclose the month-to-month value and phrases of its prolonged-phrase cable contracts. This contains not telling buyers that the firm could elevate the value of some month-to-month costs any time for the duration of the contracts, the Massachusetts legal professional general’s workplace mentioned.
‘Comcast caught way too several Massachusetts buyers with prolonged, pricey contracts that remaining several in personal debt and other folks with ruined credit rating,’ Lawyer Standard Maura Healey mentioned. ‘Customers have a proper to very clear info about the goods and companies they get. This settlement ought to stimulate the total cable and telecommunications market to consider a near seem at their adverts and make certain buyers are receiving a honest provide.’
The legal professional general’s workplace mentioned Comcast offered ‘inaccurate and misleading’ info on pricing to buyers who had been likely into prolonged-phrase contracts, and unsuccessful to disclose costs that could bump up month-to-month payments by 40 per cent earlier mentioned the price tag that’d been marketed. To terminate prolonged-phrase contracts, buyers experienced to shell out early termination costs of up to $240, the legal professional general’s workplace mentioned.
In 1 collection of advertisements, Comcast mentioned it experienced a $99 lock-in price but did not share that gear expenses and month-to-month costs would enhance a customer’s monthly bill. The advertisements also did not sufficiently express that costs could go up although a client was in a prolonged-phrase deal, the legal professional general’s workplace mentioned.
Comcast will refund all buyers in Massachusetts who compensated early termination costs when they downgraded their services or had been disconnected by Comcast from January 2015 to March 2016. All remaining unpaid early termination costs incurred from January 2015 to March 2016 for Massachusetts buyers will also be forgiven.
The Massachusetts legal professional general’s workplace mentioned Comcast ‘fully cooperated’ with the investigation.
‘The settlement with the Massachusetts Lawyer General’s Workplace displays our ongoing work to boost the client encounter,’ mentioned Comcast spokeswoman Jenni Moyer. ‘While we disagree with the allegations in the Assurance — which relate to many years-previous adverts and do not replicate Comcast’s existing insurance policies and techniques — we are fully commited to partnering with Lawyer Standard Healey and other folks who share our determination to enhancing the encounter of our buyers in all respects.’
As component of the settlement, Comcast will also have to disclose in its advertisements any added costs, and teach reps to share the real charges for month-to-month companies to buyers just before they signal on to prolonged-phrase contracts.