Thursday, November 12, 2009

US Senator Opposes the Verizon Wireless Contract ETF Increase

Verizon Wireless recently announced it's intention to raise the early termination fee or ETF of premiere device to $350 starting on November 15. However, it appears that this change in wireless contract policy has caught the eye of a vigilant US senator.

Senator Amy Klobuchar is planning to introduce new legislation to prevent wireless carriers from unfairly raising penalties on costumers who cancel their contracts early. This would obviously be in conflict with Verizon's decision to raise the ETF on premiere devices.

I blogged about Senator Klobuchar in the early development of this blog because she is one of the main proponents of the Cell Phone Consumer Empowerment Act of 2007. This legislation aimed to allow consumers to be able to make informed choices about a wireless service that best fits their needs and their budget.

Anyway, wrote the FCC regarding the recent shift in Verizon's wireless contract ETF policy. She wrote,
"Verizon Wireless' decision shows us once again that the wireless industry cannot police itself and will not, on its own, make its practices more competitive and consumer-friendly. To that end, I urge the FCC to review the recent Verizon Wireless decision as well as the competitive and economic impact of ETFs on wireless consumers."
She also wrote a letter to Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam urging him to reconsider the shift in ETF policy because it "unfairly penalize consumers" and "bear little to no relationship to the cost of the handset device."

Well, this is certainly interesting. Well see how this plays out. I doubt if Klobuchar will be able to stop this changes in Verizon's ETF policy but with a little help for her colleagues it might just work.

That's it for this latest development in the Verizon early termination fee saga. Tune-in for more developments in this story.

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