FTC Proposes Rule to Make It Easier to Cancel Subscription Services

We rely on subscription services now more than ever. While signing up is easy, canceling can be a nightmare. Some companies require you to show up in person to cancel or bombard you with drawn-out sales pitches. Others have to navigate confusing online channels and wait longer than usual for phone calls to get help.” The rule essentially makes it as easy for companies to cancel a subscription as it is to sign up,” said FTC Chairwoman Lina Kahn. Khan said the rule would allow businesses to cancel subscriptions in the same number of steps as when customers signed up for them — online or over the phone. Companies must disclose certain terms before collecting your billing information. “So they should tell you how long the trial period will last. They should clearly tell you when you have to cancel,” Khan said. Apps like Rocket Money or Mint can help you track your subscriptions. Take advantage of the free trial period and set a calendar reminder for when to cancel. Also, check to see if you’re on auto-renewal, as those fees can slip away and really add up.

We rely on subscription services now more than ever.

While registration is easy, canceling can be a nightmare.

Some companies require you to appear in person to cancel or bombard you with drawn-out sales pitches. Others offer confusing online routes and phone calls with longer-than-usual wait times.

The Federal Trade Commission It calls these dark-form tactics designed to deceive and trap consumers.

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The FTC has been legal in these cases for a while, but now it’s proposing a new rule to help.

“This rule will essentially make it as easy for companies to unsubscribe as it is to sign up,” FTC Chair Lina Khan said.

Khan said businesses should be allowed to cancel subscriptions in the same number of steps as when customers signed up for them — online or over the phone.

Companies must disclose certain terms before collecting your billing information.

“So they should tell you how long the trial period will last. They should clearly tell you when you have to cancel,” Khan said.

Apps like Rocket Money or Mint can help you track your subscriptions.

If you take advantage of the free trial period, set a calendar reminder for when to cancel. Also, check to see if you’re on auto-renewal, as those fees can slip away and really add up.

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