Verizon FiOS Early Termination Fee To Double This Week

Are you planning to sign up for Verizon FiOS service? If you wait until this Sunday to sign up, you’re going to be liable for a higher early termination fee. The fee for ending a two-year contract will more than double, from $179 to $360.

Of course, it’s companies’ perogative to charge early termination fees, but this hike, along with Verizon’s higher ETFs for smartphones, just leads to questions. From consumer advocates. And the FCC.

Verizon claims that the higher fee is intended to recoup the high costs of installation and putting the infrastructure in place, but as DSLReports notes:

Of course the money you pay Verizon every month also helps cover the cost of the install, which, unlike your ETF, has dropped significantly since 2007 as fiber to the home hardware and technology gets cheaper. As in the wireless sector, one problem is that while the ETF is pro-rated so it is reduced every month — the ETF is never fully paid off over the length of your two-year contract.

There are two serious problems with this change from a consumer point of view. First, there is no grace period in which you can cancel with no ETF. Second, you’ll still be responsible for the ETF even if you move to an area where there is no FiOS service. Um.

Verizon’s FiOS ETF: $360 Starting January 17 [DSLReports]
Report: Verizon to hike Fios termination fee [CNET]