Washington AG’s “Honest Fees Initiative” Produces Third Telecom Settlement

  • Washington AG Bob Ferguson reached a settlement with telecommunications company Charter Communications, Inc. (“Charter”) to resolve allegations of misleading consumers with hidden fees in violation of Washington’s Consumer Protection Act.
  • The AG’s office alleged that, among other things, Charter’s online marketing failed to adequately disclose to consumers that a fee called a “Broadcast TV Surcharge” would be added to their monthly bills and that the fee would be periodically increased.
  • Under the terms of the consent decree, Charter is required to pay $739,400 to the AG’s office, including attorneys’ fees and costs, and also will issue $255,660 in bill credits to impacted Washington consumers.
  • Charter is also ordered to clearly and conspicuously disclose all fees, surcharges, and terms and conditions in its internet advertising, and send to customers an order confirmation setting forth all fees and material terms within one day of a customer placing an order, among other things.
  • As previously reported, AG Ferguson’s “Honest Fees Initiative” also has netted settlements with CenturyLink Inc. and with Frontier Communications Corporation.