HB1578 (2020) Detail

Requiring Internet service providers to reimburse customers for interruptions in service.


HB 1578-FN - AS INTRODUCED

 

 

2020 SESSION

20-2566

05/08

 

HOUSE BILL 1578-FN

 

AN ACT requiring Internet service providers to reimburse customers for interruptions in service.

 

SPONSORS: Rep. Roy, Rock. 32

 

COMMITTEE: Commerce and Consumer Affairs

 

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ANALYSIS

 

This bill requires Internet access providers to reimburse customers for interruptions in service and makes the failure to do so a violation of the Consumer Protection Act.

 

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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.

20-2566

05/08

 

STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE

 

In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Twenty

 

AN ACT requiring Internet service providers to reimburse customers for interruptions in service.

 

Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:

 

1  New Paragraph; Consumer Protection; Interruption of Service; Internet Access Services.  Amend RSA 358-A:2 by inserting after paragraph XVII the following new paragraph:

XVIII.  Failing to reimburse customers for interruptions in Internet access services when engaged in the business of providing such service in the state of New Hampshire.   

(a)  Reimbursement for the day shall be required for any interruption in service for reasons not attributable to customer action or customer owned equipment that is solely under the control of the customer:  (1) when service disconnects for a period of 4 hours or more; or (2) when service disconnects more than 6 times between the hours of 9 AM and 5 PM or when service disconnects more than 10 times in a 24 hour period, regardless of the length of interruption, tolled from 12 AM to 12 AM. Reimbursement for a half day shall be required for any interruption in service for reasons not attributable to customer action or customer owned equipment that is solely under the control of the customer when the service disconnects for longer than 15 minutes but less than 4 hours.  When calculating reimbursement, service providers shall use the monthly base fee for whatever package the customer is subscribed to and divide that amount by the number of days in the entire billing period.  There shall be no exemption from the reimbursement requirements of this section for "acts of God" or any other reason that is not the fault of the customer as explained above.

(b)  In this paragraph, "Internet access services" mean services that enable users to access Internet content, and may also include access to proprietary content, applications, and other services as part of a package of services offered to users.  "Internet access service" shall not include telecommunications services, except to the extent that telecommunications services are purchased, used, or sold by a provider of Internet access to provide Internet access.

2  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect January 1, 2021.

 

LBAO

20-2566

11/22/19

 

HB 1578-FN- FISCAL NOTE

AS INTRODUCED

 

AN ACT requiring Internet service providers to reimburse customers for interruptions in service.

 

FISCAL IMPACT:      [ X ] State              [    ] County               [    ] Local              [    ] None

 

 

 

Estimated Increase / (Decrease)

STATE:

FY 2020

FY 2021

FY 2022

FY 2023

   Appropriation

$0

$0

$0

$0

   Revenue

$0

$0

$0

$0

   Expenditures

$0

Indeterminable Increase

Indeterminable Increase

Indeterminable Increase

Funding Source:

  [ X ] General            [    ] Education            [    ] Highway           [    ] Other

 

 

 

 

 

METHODOLOGY:

This bill would expand RSA 358-A:2 by requiring any business providing Internet service in New Hampshire to reimburse customers for certain interruptions in service.  Reimbursement would be required only when service disconnects for a period of 4 hours or more, or when service disconnects more than 6 times between the hours of 9 AM and 5 PM, or when service disconnects more than 10 times in a 24 hour period, tolled from 12 AM to 12 AM.  The bill would make failure to reimburse customers in the above circumstances a violation of RSA 358-A:2.  The bill would only require reimbursement if the interruption was not attributable to customer action or customer owned equipment.  The Consumer Protection and Antitrust Bureau of the Department of Justice has exclusive authority to bring enforcement actions under RSA 358-A:2. The Department of Justice indicates the bill would result in an increased number of investigations and/or prosecutions by the Department.  Because the degree of increase cannot be estimated, the fiscal impact is indeterminate.

 

AGENCIES CONTACTED:

Department of Justice

 

Links

HB1578 at GenCourtMobile
HB1578 Discussion

Action Dates

Date Body Type
Jan. 22, 2020 House Hearing
Feb. 18, 2020 House Exec Session
House Floor Vote
March 11, 2020 House Floor Vote

Bill Text Revisions

HB1578 Revision: 7225 Date: Dec. 3, 2019, 11:48 a.m.

Docket

Date Status
Jan. 8, 2020 Introduced 01/08/2020 and referred to Commerce and Consumer Affairs HJ 1 P. 27
Jan. 22, 2020 Public Hearing: 01/22/2020 02:30 pm LOB 302
Feb. 7, 2020 Subcommittee Work Session: 02/07/2020 10:00 am LOB 302
Feb. 18, 2020 Executive Session: 02/18/2020 04:31 pm LOB 302
Committee Report: Inexpedient to Legislate (Vote 19-0; CC)
March 11, 2020 Committee Report: Inexpedient to Legislate for 03/11/2020 (Vote 19-0; CC) HC 10 P. 7
March 11, 2020 Inexpedient to Legislate: MA VV 03/11/2020