Royston company warns others after e-signature used to sign new BT contract without consent

Leon Clark, Company Accountant and Jenni Matthews, Marketing Manager

Leon Clark, Company Accountant and Jenni Matthews, Marketing Manager - Credit: Archant

The owners of a Royston company have expressed their frustration that they were signed into a five-year contract with BT without their consent.

Back in November, Direct Tableware were contacted by BT claiming they would not be able to help with any faults or billing issues with their phone lines as the word ‘the’ was missing from the account name, which meant it was different to the name listed on Companies House – The Direct Tableware Company Limited.

After receiving several calls and emails from BT, the accountant at Direct Tableware, based in Lumen Road, signed the authority to go ahead with the requested account name change.

Once this was completed, to their surprise, it was followed up with an email saying the name had been changed and that the company had signed another five year contract with BT – which they had never agreed to.

The spokesman added: “We called up BT and they said to go through their complaints procedure.

“They said the contract is valid and we have signed it.

“We said ‘can you demonstrate it?’.

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“We asked them to send us a copy of any email asking us to sign another five year contract.

“It was very frustrating.”

BT did not send any evidence of Direct Tableware having signed another contract, or of any evidence of any discussions about new contracts.

When the Crow contacted BT for comment, a spokesman said: “We have spoken with the customer to apologise for the problems that have been experienced.

“A mistake was made in updating the account and we have confirmed that the original contract will apply.”

Even though BT apologised and cancelled the new contract, the Direct Tableware spokesman said it has been a stressful six months, and that they are concerned for other small businesses around the country who may not have the time or resources to fight it.

He said: “It’s been going on for six months and has only being sorted because we have gone public.

“We would urge people to check contracts with BT.

“We are not going to let it go after what they have put our business through.”