TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Cell Phone 'Bill of Rights' Debated on Beacon Hill Today

Cell Phone 'Bill of Rights' Debated on Beacon Hill Today

Monty Solomon (
Tue, 4 Oct 2005 23:44:30 -0400

By Emelie Rutherford / Daily News Staff

BOSTON -- While lawmakers want to help Massachusetts wireless
customers dodge "dead zones" and unwanted contracts, the industry is
balking at a proposed Cell Phone Users' Bill of Rights it said would
lead to higher prices.

Both sides will face off today over the legislation that would ban
wireless carriers in Massachusetts from offering contracts for more
than a year and from extending contracts without the customer's
written permission.

Additional protections include requiring the carriers to give
customers 30 days to cancel their contracts without penalty,
easy-to-understand bills, clear explanations of fees and precise
coverage maps.

Under the bill of rights state regulators also would monitor service
quality, such as dead zones and signal strength, and handle billing

If the bill of rights passes, Massachusetts would be the only state
to have such a consumer protection system for cell phone users.

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