Outrageously Substandard Broadband Service

Dear btcomplaint.com. I’m extremely frustrated by the lack of BT broadband customer service and would appreciate any advice/help you can offer. Here is my complaint.


I’m writing to complain about the outrageously substandard service I have received from you. I have been a telephone and broadband customer since 2006 and out of contract for the last four years.

On 3 August 2011 I received a bill for £144.40. Soon after that I suffered a bereavement which meant that my family income dropped significantly. On 17 August 2011 I logged into BT.com and requested a monthly payment plan which was accepted and I was asked to pay £70.50 which I did online. I was told I would pay approximately £59 per month, on the 1st day of the month.

On 7 September, after careful consideration, I called BT to cancel my broadband. I was offered a new contract with lower bandwidth which I accepted. I told the operator about the outstanding balance and she agreed to set up a direct debit to include the balance.

On 14 September I tried to use my phone line and was diverted to an automated service telling me my service had been restricted. I tried calling the helpline on 150, as well as the other freephone numbers for BT, but was diverted each time to the automated payment line. I am extremely frustrated that I have been unable to reach BT for free. Surely this is a significant failure on your part? With no broadband or telephone line I was unable to reach BT to enquire the status of my direct debit.

On 20 September after numerous attempts I used my mobile phone to call BT and lodged my complaint that my service had been restricted despite setting up a monthly payment plan, and I was told that no direct debit was in place. when I asked what happened to the monthly payment plan I set up online, I was told there was no record of this. I entered my bank details onto your website but there is no record of this and I have security concerns about this. After a fruitless conversation with the customer service advisor I asked to speak to a manager and was told I would be transferred. The phone line was disconnected and I received no callback.

On 21 September I once again called BT from my mobile and asked to speak to a manager. I was transferred to a supervisor and I requested that she call me back as the call was costing me money. She promised to call me within 5 minutes but I received no callback.

On 22 September I received a call from BT asking for payment of the outstanding balance. I was infuriated and detailed my previous attempts to contact BT and the advisor told me she would have someone from the billing department call me back. Once again I received no callback.

On 30 September I received a letter threatening termination of my service. I used my mobile to once again call BT and go through my complaint. The advisor promised to call me back and transfer me to a manager. The manager called me back and in the middle of our conversation, the call was disconnected. I received no callback.

Today 3 October I tried to contact BT via online chat, but this was unsuccessful. A customer service advisor called me back but despite going through my previous record of no contact, I was told a manager would need to call me back. As I am not in a position to pay the balance outstanding all at once, I asked for the monthly payment plan to be reinstated. I was told there would be a reconnection charge and that the outstanding balance would have to be paid before this can happen. Once again I feel BT is not taking responsibility for their failure to initiate the monthly payment plan in the first place.

I am absolutely outraged and deeply disappointed by BT’s failure to contact me or resolve my account issue. I now feel I have no choice but to cancel my contract, and since you restricted my service before I had any chance to use it, I will not be paying any cancellation fees. I have been without a contract for four years and to be treated with such disregard after signing up to a new contract is reprehensible.

I hope this email gets through to someone who can take responsibility for the failures on your part. Otherwise I will be taking my complaint further with the Ombudsman and any other forum that is willing to help.

Sally Newman

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