Comcast Faces Class Action Over Cable Box Charges

A Huntington, WV, resident has filed a class action lawsuit against the cable provider Comcast, alleging that the stipulation that customers pay a separate fee for a cable box is illegal. Comcast reportedly provides more than 24 million customers with cable services in more than 39 states.

Comcast currently rents out digital cable boxes to its customers for between $10 and $15 per month, on top of the monthly fee for cable service. The suit alleges that this practice constitutes "tying". Tying essentially describes a situation where a service can only be used if the customer obtains a separate product made available by the same company which is offering the service. This practice is in violation of federal and state trade laws.

The suit filed against Comcast claims that the company "has a monopoly in areas in which it provides cable television services to persons located in each of the states in which Comcast provides cable services, or otherwise has sufficient market power to appreciably restrain free competition."

Furthermore, the suit alleges that Comcast tells its customers that that cable boxes are incompatible with other cable services , therefore "Plaintiff, and all other Comcast television subscribers in the states in which Comcast provides cable services, have no choice but to contract with Comcast for cable television services," the suit states.

Additionally, the complaint charges that over a period of several months the rental fees paid total more than the box is worth: that Comcast buys the cable boxes at a fixed and low cost from manufacturers like Scientific Atlanta and Motorola and then rents them out to its customers.

Comcast Cable Box Class Action Legal Help

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Reader Comments

Posted by
Virginia C.
I currently have Comcast and pay the additional $10.00 per month for the modem to ensure that I am able to access the internet that I pay for.

Posted by
Let's not forget they charge 10.00 for EACH box in your home- and you can not even get the same channels- They are the WORST!!

Posted by
Kristy Smith
It really aggravates me to know that I pay $15 a month for equipment that I have to have in order to use Comcast cable it ought to come with the cable in a year's time I have paid $180 I have had that for the last 8 years my boxes should be paid for and yet I continue to pay how can that be legal I paid $1,300 for those boxes they are already paid off and I'm still renting them I should own them

Posted by
I have provided proof that we returned the boxes within one week of discontinuing service, but Comcast kept billing us as if we kept the boxes. I have been turned in to a collection service for 689.00 for these boxes, that we returned.

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