By Bob Van Voris
Time Warner Cable Inc. agreed to pay $1.9 million to settle Federal Trade Commission claims it failed to provide required notice to consumers when it used information from their credit reports to require them to pay a deposit or prepay for their first month’s cable service.
Time Warner Cable violated the Risk-Based Pricing Rule, which requires creditors to inform customers if they’re given less favorable terms as a result of negative information in their credit reports, the FTC said in a statement.
“Consumers have the right to know if they are paying more for something because of information in their credit report,” said Jessica Rich, director of the Federal Trade Commission’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “Getting this notice gives you a right to a free copy of your report, so you can make sure everything on it is correct. Some of Time Warner Cable’s customers were missing out on this important right.”
The FTC said the case, which was filed in Manhattan federal court, marks the first enforcement action by the agency since it completed its amended Risk-Based Pricing Rule in 2011. The FTC said Time Warner Cable failed to give customers the required notices from January 2011 until at least March 2013.
“We are pleased to have resolved this matter, so that we can focus all of our efforts on providing outstanding services to our customers,” Eric Mangan, a spokesman for Time Warner Cable. said in an email.
The case is U.S. v. Time Warner Cable Inc., 13-cv-08998, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).