Telecommunications: Unemployed people will be able to cancel contracts without penalty

Deepak Gupta August 1, 2022
Updated 2022/08/01 at 2:05 PM

In times of a “deeper” pandemic, several measures were implemented by the Government to protect the most vulnerable. In terms of telecommunications, more than 2300 consumers benefited from extraordinary measures.

The Government wants to continue with some of these measures and the new electronic communications law already provides for situations of unemployment, prolonged illness and emigration.

Customers will be able to terminate contracts for no reason, but...

The new electronic communications law, which is due to be enacted later this month, provides that unemployment, prolonged illness or emigration allow for early cancellation of services free of charge. Whoever terminates without reason will not pay more than 50% of the remaining amount, says Dinheiro Vivo.

Under this new legislation, telecommunications service operators cannot “require the consumer who owns the contract to pay any charges related to non-compliance with the loyalty period" in case of "unemployment situation”, if the origin of the contract cancellation is a “dismissal at the initiative of the employer for a fact not attributable to the worker" And what about "implies loss of the consumer's disposable monthly income”, says the channel.

The information from the electronic communications law also states that “permanent or temporary incapacity for work lasting more than 60 days” of the contract holder, “particularly in case of illness”, implying “loss of consumer disposable monthly income” will allow you to terminate the contract with an operator once the loyalty period comes to an end.

Telecommunications: Unemployed people will be able to cancel contracts without penalty

In both situations, the loss of income must be “equal to or greater than 20%”being calculated “by comparing the sum of the consumer's income in the month” to the change in situation.

Two other situations also justify an early termination without penalties, in case there is a loyalty period in progress. On the one hand, if the contract holder's "unpredictable change of permanent housing" takes place outside Portugal - that is, in case of emigration. On the other hand, when there is a "change in the consumer's permanent place of residence, if the company cannot guarantee the provision of the contracted service or equivalent service, namely in terms of characteristics and price, at the new address" - for example, if a consumer has to move to a home.

Outside the exception frame, there is one more novelty: whoever wants to terminate a contract without legal reason may do so, paying the operator no more than 50% of the remaining amount of the loyalty period.

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