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Standard User David_W
(fountain of knowledge) Sun 17-Nov-13 12:17:41
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Re: Query about BT Broadband service & contract


[re: Oscar2013] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by Oscar2013:
It seems to me that BT and 'Timothy' are equally at fault. He must have signed for the contract, but BT have failed to provide the service.
The service is on the line for him to use, and has been from the beginning of the contract.

He can use any ADSL hardware he likes - BT Retail use genetic user names and passwords.


As I said in my earlier reply, mistake does not entitle a party to contractual remedies. The law recognises that some people are incapable of entering into a binding contract as they lack the mental capacity to do so, but the Mental Capacity Act 2005 standard for incapacity is high and a contract is only voidable if the counterparty should have known the person lacked capacity (or the person's affairs were under the Court of Protection).

I don't think we're talking here about an MCA 2005 situation - just someone who was maybe a little naive and who failed to check their contractual paperwork and bills carefully. Unless I've misunderstood the scenario and the MCA 2005 potentially applies, the person had ample opportunity to realise a long time ago that they were paying for broadband and could have contacted BT Retail about the matter. They did not do so, and BT Retail continued to incur wholesale costs in providing the broadband service.

The law on distance selling provides the remedy for misunderstanding or mistake when entering into a contract for service at a distance, though the right to cancel under these regulations can be curtailed when the provider has taken steps to arrange provision (in which case they should draw your attention to the limited right to cancel).


The OP's friend could seek a gesture of goodwill, but I would expect BT Retail to resist this. Unless the MCA 2005 applies, BT Retail have every right to enforce the contract, they have incurred costs in providing the service and they have no obligation to protect consumers from their own voluntary acts.

If the OP's friend has been stupid and naive, he should, in my view, take this as a relatively cheap and low consequence lesson that contractual commitments are binding and rights to cancel disappear unless you take timely action. Making a mistake in connection with something like a financial product could be immensely costly - if you discover something wrong with a motor insurance policy when something has gone wrong, it could cost you a £200 fine, 6 points, significantly more expensive insurance in the future, the loss of the premium and personal liability for any losses that would have been covered by the policy if all the details were correct.

Standard User Oscar2013
(newbie) Fri 22-Nov-13 00:38:11
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Re: Query about BT Broadband service & contract


[re: David_W] [link to this post]
 
Hello again,

I think I have to agree with all your points. 'Timothy' has been slow on the uptake shall we say smile. As stated, in the big scheme of things, just the Broadband part of the bill is small compared to insurance errors or poor financial advice that could literally wipe out a lifetimes saving. I for one would not pay for a service and wonder about it nine or ten months later! My only question with regards BT side of this matter is their lack of provision of the service. Yes I agree people can and do use alternative equipment than that supplied by their respective ISP. For instance I have never used ISP supplied equipment until my current ISP. Yet the contract is for provision of services and equipment to allow use of that service, well at least the broadband side, long gone are the days when a 706 was provided at the end of the phone line wink

BT have supplied a service and if it is like the 'Broadband' being advertised currently, it comes with BT Sport app and online player, Unlimited wi-fi, BT SmartTalk, BT Family Protection, BT Home Hub 4, 2GB BT Cloud. BT did not supply a home hub which I assume they said they would in the contract at the beginning. BT will therefore have failed to let the customer use the broadband service. If the H.H. did go out for delivery and come back, they have an unfulfilled order on the system. It is their job to fulfil that order, not just sit back and hope the customer does their job for them. I would think it poor where BT to say the broadband was available to use but you decided not to use it.

‘Timothy’ should have done something about much sooner AND BT should have provided the equipment, hence my suggestions BT refund half the Broadband element from the bill.

Anyway, the last thing I heard from him (apart fom he has definitely not had a H.H. or an attempted delivery of one either) is he is thinking of doing away with the phone line completely. I’ll see him next week, ( happy happy joy joy blush ).

Thanks,
Standard User XRaySpeX
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Fri 22-Nov-13 01:00:18
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Re: Query about BT Broadband service & contract


[re: Oscar2013] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by Oscar2013:
My only question with regards BT side of this matter is their lack of provision of the service.
There is no reason to believe that BT has failed to provide the billed BB service. They would have connected his phone line to their DSLAM in the exchange and as far as they are concerned it was ready for him to use or not as he desired.

As for the 'absent' router, if he is lax / 'slow on the uptake' with his deliveries or 'could not deliver - pop in to local Delivery Office to collect' cards as he is with checking his phone bill, than the router could be anywhere other than back at BT.

No, he has not a leg to stand on unless BT in their generosity, seeing he has consumed not a single Byte since installation, allow him a gratuity payment. Other than that he should be thankful that he has learnt a fairly cheap lesson to be more careful in future.

1999: Freeserve 48K Dial-Up => 2005: Wanadoo 1 Meg BB => 2007: Orange 2 Meg BB => 2008: Orange 8 Meg LLU => 2010: Orange 16 Meg LLU => 2011: Orange 20 Meg WBC


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