Consumers of electronic communication services will need a contract summary before a contract is concluded

December 20, 2019
The European Commission has adopted an implementing regulation establishing a template for the contract summary that electronic communications services operators should provide to consumers in the EU. The providers of these services, such as telephony, messaging or internet, will need to give to the consumers a summary of the contract before a contract is concluded. The summary will include the main conditions of the contract.
The contract summary is a standardised one page sheet (for one service) or up to three pages (for a bundle) which will be provided to every consumer of electronic communications services before a contract is concluded. It includes, in a concise manner and easily readable format, the main elements of information that providers are required to make available to consumers, such as provider’s contact details, description of the service, speeds of the internet service, price, duration, renewal and termination of the contract and features for end-users with disabilities.
The contract summary will help providers better present information about the main terms of the contract so consumers can compare different offers for services before they enter into a contract.  Consumers can obtain the summary in a similar way as they can obtain the contract, such as on paper in a shop or online. 
The implementing regulation is based on the updated EU telecommunications rules, the European Electronic Communications Code. The implementing regulation does not establish new requirements, but specifies how the summary is to be provided and the main elements to be included in the summary, based on the European Electronic Communications Code. This implementing regulation is the first European Commission deliverable of the European Electronic Communications Code. 
The summary will be required as of 21 December 2020 when the European Electronic Communications Code will apply in all EU member states. The authentic version of the implementing regulation and its annex are scheduled for publication in the Official Journal of the European Union on 30 December 2019.
Although the UK is scheduled to leave the EU on 31 January 2020, it will be subject to the transition period until the end of 2020.  As a result, as we have already reported, Ofcom is consulting on implementing the provisions of the European Electronic Communications Code in the UK.