Senators Take Aim at Cellphone-Termination Fees

Four senators introduced legislation Thursday aimed at the fees wireless carriers charge when subscribers change providers before their contracts are up.

The bill, dubbed the Cell Phone Early Termination Fee, Transparency and Fairness Act, would cap those early-termination fees based on the price of the phone, and would pro-rate fees based on the time left on the contract.

“Forcing consumers to pay outrageous fees bearing little to no relation to the cost of their handset devices is anti-consumer and anti-competitive,” Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D., Minn.), one of the bill’s sponsors, said in a statement.

“It’s allowing consumers more information and also making sure that the industry isn’t sticking it to consumers,” a spokeswoman for the senator added.

Early-termination fees have attracted criticism from some lawmakers, regulators and consumer groups, who say they’re too high and too complicated. Most of the major wireless carriers, including Verizon Wireless (VZ), AT&T (T) and Sprint (S), have faced disputes related to their fees.

Read the rest of this post on the original site


Must-Reads from other Websites

Panos Mourdoukoutas

Why Apple Should Buy China’s Xiaomi

Paul Graham

What I Didn’t Say

Benjamin Bratton

We Need to Talk About TED

Mat Honan

I, Glasshole: My Year With Google Glass

Chris Ware

All Together Now

Corey S. Powell and Laurie Gwen Shapiro

The Sculpture on the Moon

About Voices

Along with original content and posts from across the Dow Jones network, this section of AllThingsD includes Must-Reads From Other Websites — pieces we’ve read, discussions we’ve followed, stuff we like. Six posts from external sites are included here each weekday, but we only run the headlines. We link to the original sites for the rest. These posts are explicitly labeled, so it’s clear that the content comes from other websites, and for clarity’s sake, all outside posts run against a pink background.

We also solicit original full-length posts and accept some unsolicited submissions.

Read more »