Pay less when the internet is too slow

by time news

In December, some improvements for consumers will take effect. On the one hand, the amendment to the Telecommunications Act (TKG) promises a “right to fast internet”, and on the other hand, mobile phone and internet contracts will be easier to terminate.

This is how customers can proceed specifically: If the internet speed is lower than specified in the contract, the provider is obliged to solve the problem. If he does not, consumers can reduce the price or switch to another provider from December onwards. However, customers should ensure that the slow speed is not due to their own technology at home, advises the consumer adviser Finanztip.

Anyone who prematurely cuts the bill on their own must expect the provider to stop Internet access. Broadband measurements must be used to prove whether the internet speed offered by the operator is actually too low. Consumers can do that themselves. The Federal Network Agency provides free measurement tools for this at Breitbandmess.de. Ten measurements must be taken on each of two different days. If 90 percent of the maximum speed is not reached at least twice and the minimum speed is not reached more than once, there is a right to compensation.

Consumers are also compensated in the event of a disruption

The consumer advice center North Rhine-Westphalia advises to send the test protocol to the provider and to ask him in writing to improve his performance. This then usually has 14 days to provide the promised internet service. If he is unable to do this, the customer may reduce the invoice amount as a percentage of the deviation. According to the Federal Ministry of Economics, customers who only receive 50 instead of the contractually agreed 100 megabits per second, for example, only have to pay 50 percent of the monthly fee.

From now on, consumers will also be better compensated in the event of a disruption. However: “The compensation is not paid automatically. Those affected must assert this with the provider, ”says Irina Krüger, a lawyer at the Berlin Consumer Center. “The best thing to do is to send a cover letter demanding compensation.”

From the third full day of absence, whereby the day of the report is not taken into account, 5 euros or 10 percent of the monthly fees would be reimbursed. From the fifth day off, it is 10 euros or 20 percent, says Krüger. Even if the technician does not keep an agreed appointment, there is now an entitlement to compensation of 10 euros or 20 percent of the monthly internet costs.

Easier to cancel cell phone and internet contracts

From December onwards, consumers can terminate contracts more easily regardless of disruptions. As with landline and mobile phone contracts, internet contracts can be terminated on a monthly basis after the minimum contract period has expired. This applies not only to new, but also to existing contracts, explains the North Rhine-Westphalia consumer advice center. Providers must also inform their existing customers in writing once a year if the chosen tariff is now available at better conditions.

The new Telecommunications Act also mentions the “right to fast internet”. Those who only get very slow internet should therefore be able to insist on a better connection from summer 2022. The Federation of German Consumer Organizations (vzbv) criticizes, however, that a minimum range has not been specified in the law. The requirements are now being specified by the Federal Network Agency and must be fixed by the beginning of June 2022.

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