Cablevision (Optimum) Sued Over Cancellation Policies –

Altice-owned Optimum is facing a new class action lawsuit for the company’s cancellation policies. As we noted late last year, under Altice ownership, Optimum is now billing customers that cancel through the end of their billing cycle, even if they’ve already turned in all of their equipment — or moved to a new location. Under Cablevision, customers that cancelled service immediately stopped having to pay the company (unless they owed a balance).

As our friends at Stop the Cap notes, this is spelled out in the Optimum terms of service rather clearly:

Monthly Charges: Your monthly subscription begins on the first day following your installation date and renews thereafter on a monthly basis beginning on the first day of the next billing period assigned to you until cancelled by you. The monthly service charge(s) will be billed at the beginning of your assigned billing period and each month thereafter unless and until you cancel your Service(s). PAYMENTS ARE NONREFUNDABLE AND THERE ARE NO REFUNDS OR CREDITS FOR PARTIALLY USED SUBSCRIPTION PERIOD(S).
But a former Optimum customer is taking the company to court, claiming that Optimum and Altice cable broke New York s General Business Law 349 for deceptive practices and for illegally changing the terms and conditions of its cancellation policy “without adequate notice.”

The class action lawsuit laments that Optimum customers canceling service before the end of a billing cycle can incur $100 or more in additional charges for cable service no longer being received after turning in cable equipment as part of a move or switch to another TV, phone and broadband provider.

The case may not have legs, as Altice/Optimum states that subscribers were given advanced notice of the chances in their billing statements. And like most companies now, Optimum’s terms of service includes a provision that prevents its customers from suing it from traditional court, instead shoveling these users toward binding arbitration — where companies tend to win disputes the majority of the time.

Interested readers can find a copy of the full lawsuit here (pdf).

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