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Office of Competition and Consumer Protection

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UPC Polska - decision of President of UOKiK

< previous | next > 30.10.2020

UPC Polska - decision of President of UOKiK
  • Are you a current or former customer of UPC? Did the service provider increase your subscription fee? If yes, then you can count on receiving compensation.
  • Restoration of the previous prices and no future increases for a certain group of customers – these are the effects of action taken by UOKiK.

President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection Tomasz Chróstny issued a decision concerning UPC Polska. Complaints received from consumers and the service provider’s competitor served as a basis for addressing the issue.

UOKiK determined that customers of UPC who had concluded agreements for an indefinite time received letters informing about an increase of the speed of their Internet connection and the price of this service being PLN 7 higher – the new rules were supposed to come into effect on 1 March 2015. One year later, the service provider increased the subscription price by PLN 3–8 depending on the plan. In its letters, the company also informed that it would introduce a provision enabling it to change the amount of subscription fee in its agreements.

President of UOKiK concluded that neither the increase of the subscription fee nor amendment of the provision should have taken place as the concluded agreements did not provide for such a possibility. This is due to the fact that the agreements did not include the so-called modification clauses, which precisely define what and under what conditions may change during the term of the agreement.

“We do not question the undertaking’s right to amend agreements concluded for an indefinite time; however, such amendment must always be based on an unambiguous, precise modification clause which is understandable to the consumer,” explains Tomasz Chróstny, President of UOKiK.

Compensation

UPC Polska undertook to change its practices and compensate the losses. The solutions described in the decision of President of UOKiK apply to current and former subscribers to whom UPC sent letter informing about the increases and amendments to the agreements.

  • Current subscribers:
    • One selected service free of charge – for persons in whose case the total overpaid amount due to the increase of the subscription fee does not exceed PLN 200. They will have the ability to e.g. use mobile telephony, a security package, access specific channel packages, such as HBO, Polsat Sport Premium, My Prime, Mega Sport or Canal+ Prestige, at no additional cost.
    • Two selected services free of charge – for persons in whose case the total overpaid amount due to the increase of the subscription fee exceeds PLN 200.
    • The previous price and parameters – regardless of their bills, current subscribers will be able to use the telecommunications services at the subscription fee and parameters as they were before the change.
    • Reduction of the subscription fee or the above-mentioned services – the discount will amount to PLN 15–60, depending on the overpaid amount due to the increase of the subscription fee. This is an offer for persons who are still subscribers of UPC Polska but already use different services than the ones covered by the increases.
  • Former subscribers will receive reimbursement amounting to 75% of the paid increases or have the option to use the services offered by UPC once again at a discount of PLN 20–30 for as many as 18 months.

“In this procedure, UPC undertook towards President of UOKiK that it would remedy the consequences of the impugned practices and compensate the consumers for their losses. This decision means that the actions with adverse consequences for the subscribers will be eliminated immediately and that consumers using the services offered by UPC will receive benefits without having to claim them in long court proceedings. For example, UPC will restore the previous prices and will not increase the subscription fee in the future for a certain group of customers,” adds President of UOKiK.

UPC Polska will inform the customers about the decision by email, post, SMS or via the individual subscriber account. To claim compensation, current and former subscribers should contact the service provider. Detailed information on the benefits available to UPC subscribers can be found in the decision (available only in Polish)

The decision is final and subject to execution.

This is not the only action taken by President of UOKiK with regard to unilateral amendment of agreements by cable operators – an investigation procedure concerning Vectra is also under way. UOKiK is verifying whether the undertaking was allowed to amend the provisions of its agreements, which included introducing a modification clause and increasing the price, and whether there were grounds therefor.

Consumer support:

Phone: +48 801 440 220 or +48 22 290 89 16 – consumer helpline
Email: [SCODE]cG9yYWR5QGRsYWtvbnN1bWVudG93LnBs[ECODE]
Consumer ombudsmen – in your town or district
Office of Electronic Communications - Consumer Information Centre – +48 22 330 40 00

Additional information for the media:

UOKiK Press Office
Pl. Powstańców Warszawy 1, 00-950 Warszawa, Poland
Phone +48 695 902 088, +48 22 55 60 246
E-mail: [SCODE]Yml1cm9wcmFzb3dlQHVva2lrLmdvdi5wbA==[ECODE]
Twitter: @UOKiKgovPL

 

 

Attached files

 

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