Two Flat Rates after Switching Providers

In the attempt to save costs, you agreed to obtain a new DSL-provider. The customer service of the new provider told you that they will take care of “everything”. You were not need to worry about anything. But this dream has become a nightmare as the old provider is still billing you for his flat rate. And what you are to do with two flat rates? Upon double-checking, the new pro-vider confirmed that they had canceled the old line. Can that be that you still have to pay twice?


Yes and no. Until you cancel the old flat rate, yes, you will have to pay for it. This is true because your internet line and the flat rate are two different contracts. The new provider can only cancel the old line but never the flat rate. You have to cancel the flat rate by yourself. The safest way to cancel your flat rate is in writing a letter and sending it per registered mail and registered answer. Generally, a fax will have the same effect. N.B. just because you cancelled the line, does not mean that you can extraordinarily terminate the flat rate. Both contracts do not legally independent.

Since the new provider promised you to take care of everything, you might consider this as a breach of contract that will make you eligible for damages. Legally observed, this wrong consultation in spite of better knowledge gives you the right to claim damages pursuant to §280 I BGB. The new provider has the legal duty to inform on all relevant matters when closing a contract and especially how the change will proceed. Practically seen, you are in tight spot because you have to prove that they promised that they were going to cancel the line as well as the flat rate. You have everything in writing? Fine! Double check what the new provider exactly promised and not what you believe he promised.


Whenever you again enter or change a contract on the phone, request that they send you in writing or per eMail the results of your order. Be sure to emphasize your wish that they expressly say that the new provider will take care of “everything”. Keep in mind, when closing a long-distance contract then you have the right to cancel this new contract within 14 days. Always save all correspondence during the validity of a contract!

Published on the old CMS: 2007/4/1
Read on the old CMS till November 2008: 1,323 reads

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