UPC Polska cable network targeted by UOKiK regulator

The President of UOKiK, Tomasz Chróstny, initiated proceedings against the cable TV operator UPC Polska. It is about the high costs of terminating the contract before its completion, the antimonopoly office said.

On Tuesday, the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection announced the initiation of proceedings against the cable TV operator UPC Polska. It concerns the possibility of reserving fees in excess of the contract value, when the consumer resigns from services before the end of the contract (e.g. for access to the Internet or cable TV).

UOKiK also published examples of complaints from the operator’s customers: “(…) I wanted to terminate the contract with UPC earlier. After telephone contact, I received information that if I terminated the contract in August this year, the penalty is PLN 11,000. The contract was concluded in March 2021 for 2 years. Cost of the entire contract is approximately PLN 3,100 (…) “; “(…) On September 30, 2021, the operator set the deadline for its termination on November 1, 2021, with a penalty for termination of the contract before the end of the commitment period in the amount of PLN 2085.15. and counting PLN 89 of the fees, the amount to be paid would be less than PLN 630 (…) “.

As explained by UOKiK, if a consumer terminates a contract with a telecommunications operator before its end, the latter has the right to charge a fee. However, it cannot be higher than the discount granted to the consumer, less the time for using the services. The amount of the discount is indicated in the contract – it is about concluding a contract on promotional terms.

UOKiK informed that the analysis of complaints and concluded contracts shows that UPC Polska may reserve inadequately high fees for early termination of the contract – they exceed the value of these contracts, i.e. the sum of subscription fees. The quoted consumer complaints show that they would have to pay more for the termination of the contract than if they had paid monthly for UPC services.

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