3 fast-approaching changes to terms and conditions: are you ready?

3 fast-approaching changes to terms and conditions: are you ready?

In recent weeks, we have been looking quite intensely at consumer terms and conditions: how can they be drafted and presented in ways that are creative yet effective?

In other words, whilst a business' T&Cs are unlikely to become a bestseller or win the Man Booker Prize, there are steps that can be made to make them much more user-friendly and understandable.

That said, there are always times when the background law doesn't give much, or indeed any, flexibility. Sometimes the law dictates what should be said or how it should be said.

Today, we briefly look at up-coming changes in the law which will, to varying degrees, impact on business-to-consumer terms and conditions over the next six months or so. They mean that your client's terms and conditions will no doubt need to be amended. Soon!

Phone numbers

Ofcom is going to change the structure of non-geographic call charges on 1 July 2015 (ie in just over 2 months).

If your client uses any of the following number types in its terms and conditions or any advertising material, the changes will apply:

  • 084
  • 087
  • 09, and
  • 118

To this end, the Committee on Advertising Practice (CAP) has provided guidance on what it expects to see from businesses:

under Ofcom's policy you will need to state the service charge for any service numbers given in your marketing materials, and make clear that an access charge applies. We recommend the format “Calls cost xp [or xp per minute] plus your telephone company’s network access charge.”

UK Calling, which provides a 'Guide for businesses to the UK Calling changes', 

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