The Consumer Lawyer

Millions of SKY TV customers may be paying too much

Satelliten-Antenne auf einem Ziegeldach

Millions of Sky TV customers may be paying over the odds for their TV subscription and therefore may be able to get a better deal. If you’re a Sky TV customer I’m urging you to check your bill/contract now. Here’s what you need to know:

What has happened?

In February 2020, communications regulator ‘Ofcom’, introduced a requirement for broadband, mobile, home phone and pay-tv companies to notify their residential and business customers when their minimum contract period is coming to an end. This was a big victory for the consumer and an important consumer protection tool to prompt consumers to shop around for the best deal for their needs.

Whilst Sky provides end of contract notices for its other services, it has not done so for its standalone pay-tv service (i.e. the sky box in your front room), believing it did not have to as this service fell outside of the rules. However, following an investigation, Ofcom has concluded that Sky is wrong and therefore that it should be telling TV customers when their contract is coming to an end.

What should I do now?

As Sky has not been sending end of contract notifications, millions of consumers will find their Sky contract has come to end. This will leave you free to look for a cheaper deal, either with Sky or an alternative supplier. To find out if you are out of contract, log into your online account and look through your messages and find the one that is titled ‘Confirming your Sky offer’. This message should tell you the start date and length of your contract.  Alternatively, you can call Sky and ask the question on 0333 7591 018.

Am I entitled to compensation for Sky’s failure?

Unfortunately not, but you may want to raise the failure when speaking to Sky about getting a better deal.

What does Sky say?

Sky’s position has always been that it does not need to provide end of contract notices to its pay-tv customers under the rules and therefore maintains that the rules have not been broken. It remains to be seen if it will appeal Ofcom’s decision, which it must do within two months. Regardless of what Sky does next, you should always keep a note of when your contract ends.

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