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Standard User timfoster
(newbie) Wed 02-Jan-13 09:21:12
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Plusnet charging me for going into labour!


[link to this post]
 
I have just signed up with Plusnet for fibre optic on an 18 month contract. We've paid 12 months line rental in advance and have an appointment for them to configure the line in the middle of January.

I am 8 months pregnant and have told Plusnet that I may have to reschedule the installation appointment if I go into labour on the day they are due to attend. I'm not due until the end of the month, and the appointment is the middle of the month, but babies aren't born to the schedule of telecoms engineers! Plusnet's response was that they would charge me £50 if I go into labour!

How appalling is that??? If there was a tree fallen into the road and their engineer couldn't attend due to matters beyond their control, they wouldn't be too keen on paying me for my wasted time.

This is a shocking way to treat customers and I thought people should know how they opoerate. I haven't cancelled the switch to them yet as the point is moot until it occurs, but just the fact that they would make such a statement leaves me unwilling to continue with them after the contract is up.
ISP Representative orbrey
(isp) Wed 02-Jan-13 09:36:13
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Re: Plusnet charging me for going into labour!


[re: timfoster] [link to this post]
 
Hi there,

The actual fee we're charged for a missed appointment is around £144, we only charge the £50 to try and recoup some of that.

However we will only waive that fee if the reason for the missed installation was down to negligence on our part (or otherwise our fault). Congratulations on your imminent new addition, however I'm afraid if the appointment is missed due to you going into labour I'm afraid we wouldn't waive the fee as the reason for the appointment being missed is not down to us.

Is there no way you could arrange for someone else to be at your premises if going into labour does coincide with the install appointment?

Regards,

Matthew Taylor
Plusnet Customer Support
The above post has been made by an ISP REPRESENTATIVE (although not necessarily the ISP being discussed in the post).
Standard User Adam3k
(knowledge is power) Wed 02-Jan-13 09:45:59
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Re: Plusnet charging me for going into labour!


[re: timfoster] [link to this post]
 
Hi,

Sadly Matthew is correct. The charge is passed on to Plusnet from BT Openreach. Its a common charge. However £50 is much better than the full wholesale cost.

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Standard User timfoster
(newbie) Wed 02-Jan-13 09:48:38
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Re: Plusnet charging me for going into labour!


[re: orbrey] [link to this post]
 
This I find even more amazing. Plusnet support respond to this forum faster than they respond to their own support channel. Presumably because this is a public forum and bad publicity is worse than a disgruntled customer!

I'm afraid if the appointment is missed due to you going into labour I'm afraid we wouldn't waive the fee as the reason for the appointment being missed is not down to us.
Neither is it down to me. It may come as a surprise, but I didn't plan the birth of my child to coincide with your engineer visit. As previously stated, if your sub-contracted engineer was unable to attend due to matters beyond his control (think extreme weather, fallen trees etc) you would not consider it reasonable to pay the costs I have incurred in taking time off work. In this scenario, your engineer would have missed the appointment due to no fault of mine. My rate is £450 per day. Your appointments are scheduled for half day periods, so therefore my charge will be £225.

Lets hope the weather remains reasonable. As I stated before, I will not be paying a fee if the scenario occurs. Look up the term 'force majeure'.
Standard User gomezz
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Wed 02-Jan-13 09:56:29
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Re: Plusnet charging me for going into labour!


[re: timfoster] [link to this post]
 
In your OP you say we. Which implies there is at least one other person who could babysit the installation for you?

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Standard User timfoster
(newbie) Wed 02-Jan-13 10:06:05
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Re: Plusnet charging me for going into labour!


[re: gomezz] [link to this post]
 
Not really. The 'we' refers to my partner. As with me, his priority is the birth of our child not an engineer who may or may not turn up sometime during the day.

As I said in the OP the baby isn't due until the end of the month and so may very well not present any problem. We have made Plusnet aware as a matter of courtesy. The stance taken by Plusnet seems to be staggeringly short-sighted. I have vast experience in the telecoms market and having spoken with my contacts at BT this morning, they have confirmed that the negative publicity that this would cause is far outweighed by waiving the fee. As my contact pointed out, this is the kind of story that the press love. Incidentally, he also said that BT would almost certainly waive the fee they charge to Plusnet in this scenario, and that their standard SLA includes 24 hour not 48 hour cancellation notifications.
ISP Representative chrisparr
(isp) Wed 02-Jan-13 10:14:47
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Re: Plusnet charging me for going into labour!


[re: timfoster] [link to this post]
 
Why don't we wait and see if the engineer appointment does indeed coincide with the labour?

If you do go into labour and the appointment is missed, drop me a PM on here and we'll see what can be done about the missed appointment fee (bear in mind that we'll still be charged this from our suppliers though).

Chris Parr
Plusnet Support Team
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The above post has been made by an ISP REPRESENTATIVE (although not necessarily the ISP being discussed in the post).
Standard User ian72
(knowledge is power) Wed 02-Jan-13 10:32:28
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Re: Plusnet charging me for going into labour!


[re: timfoster] [link to this post]
 
Not wanting to stoke the fires but didn't you order the broadband at a time when there is a reasonable chance of you going into labour? Plusnet aren't forcing you to order broadband at this time and you could have waited a month or two at which point you would not have had this to worry about. The timing was not plusnets choice so why would they take the hit (and they would still be taking a fairly large hit even with charging you £50).
Standard User RobertoS
(sensei) Wed 02-Jan-13 11:05:35
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Re: Plusnet charging me for going into labour!


[re: timfoster] [link to this post]
 
This is meant to lighten the discussion a little - I hope it will be taken that way.
In reply to a post by timfoster:
I will not be paying a fee if the scenario occurs.
Claiming that contractions justify breach of contract.

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Standard User Sinclair
(learned) Wed 02-Jan-13 11:06:08
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Re: Plusnet charging me for going into labour!


[re: ian72] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by ian72:
Not wanting to stoke the fires but didn't you order the broadband at a time when there is a reasonable chance of you going into labour? Plusnet aren't forcing you to order broadband at this time and you could have waited a month or two at which point you would not have had this to worry about. The timing was not plusnets choice so why would they take the hit (and they would still be taking a fairly large hit even with charging you £50).


Yes, I agree with Ian. Why not ask Plusnet to delay your fibre installation for a couple of months to allow for contingency. You seem to be expecting Plusnet to pay the cancellation costs which they will incur, if you go into labour which seems more than harsh to me. Having said that - congratulations and I hope that all goes well - and to schedule!
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