The Communications Regulation Commission has announced its position on distance sale and standard terms contracts agreed under the Electronic Communications Act.

Distance sale contracts

The Electronic Communications Act only permits (Article 229, para 1) the extension of fixed-term contracts with the subscriber’s written consent to the conditions for extension. Where the contract expires without such consent, it automatically becomes an indefinite-term contract on the same terms as before that the subscriber can terminate without penalty on a month’s notice.

The CRC has confirmed that distance-sale contracts executed electronically (by phone) will only be valid as long as the subscriber has been told about the terms for extending his contract and given his informed consent, and that his consent has been recorded and can be reproduced.

Standard terms contracts

The Act also (Article 228, para. 3) requires consumer contracts on the seller’s standard terms of business not to come into effect for seven days after execution unless the subscriber gives written consent to the contract beginning immediately. 

The CRC has confirmed that where the agreement does not expressly state that it is to take effect immediately, it will not begin for seven days and can be terminated by the subscriber without penalty within that period.