Telephone service | Unicom and Chess prove that small is best











Twice within the passed few days we have been made aware of the sharp practices of Unicom and Chess Telecom.

Unicom trebling the cost of one bill and Chess with their usual underhand sales tactics. . .

Unicom is now on their 3rd investigation by OFCOM for their underhand sales procedures in selling telephone products to consumers and businesses. The most blatant of which is their 3 year fixed term contract, which under EU law is prohibited, the maximum time that an individual or a small business, 10 staff or less, can sign up to a telephone service contract is 24 months. As well as this being the maximum length of contract for telephone service, these contract cannot automatically roll over, as in they cannot renew the contract for a further 24 months without getting your consent.

Chess on the other hand, just be careful when speaking to them on the phone, and make sure that who calls them on behalf of your company knows to beware of what is being said by the Chess staff member, for example, if your staff member is asked, “are you authorised by your company ” please be aware that this is them about to change your contractual terms and conditions, as well as length of contract.

It’s worth remembering that your local telephone service provider is probably best when looking for a trust worthy partner, they are local to you, they will, in all probability, be more than happy to come in and speak to you, they are less likely to tie you up on long term contracts.

We here at Just Voice and Data will, where possible, ensure that we only ever offer 30 day rolling contracts for telephone service, that means that if you’re not happy with our service, you can leave at any time as long as you give us 30 days notice, no long tie ins.

To find out more contact us here

Chess Telecom Strikes Again

We are absolutely stunned and sickened that Ofcom are failing to take action against this company’s underhand tactics.

Recently I have been made aware of a client, yet again, unwittingly being tricked in to entering a contract by telephone, when the client tries to leave, suddenly as if by magic Chess somehow manage to produce a recording of the conversation. Strange that, any time we have asked for a copy for a client the standard response is “Ofcom only require us to keep recordings 6 months” Having asked Ofcom about this on several occasions they state they have no such rule. Ah well Chess make the rules up as they go along any way.

Did anyone notice them sneaking in a change to their terms in December? No didn’t think so. Despite Ofcom stating that 30 days notice must be given, and even when it is given you have a right to refuse those new terms and leave without penalty, Chess gave their customers ZERO notice. They conveniently put on the November bill about the changes, the bill dated the 30th November, stating that the changes took affect on the 1st December, now that’s hardly 30 days notice, is it?  Also take in to consideration that their clients would not have received that bill till around the 5th of December (it’s impossible to receive it on the 30th of any month, the networks don’t release the calling information till the 2nd working day of the next month), this means that Chess Telecom PLC changed their terms and conditions without giving their clients the proper notice.

Early termination fees, the bain of our lives. Ofcom guidelines state that basic law should be applied when calculating these, what that means is that whatever costs are associated with providing the service to you, as they will no longer be provided, should be deducted from the early termination charge. In other words, as an example if you have a standard line the wholesale rental coast is £9 approx, if Chess were charging £12 (as if) they would be entitled to charge £3 going on Ofcoms guidance to them. The question must then be, how much of that £3 is administration as well? Ofcom does allow them to charge and admin fee, however £99 per line is taking it a bit far!