WASHINGTON, D.C. (NBC) – A group of bipartisan senators introduced a bill to make it easier for people to cancel online subscriptions after the free trial period ends.
The “Unsubscribe Act” would require companies to be more transparent about their subscriptions.
It addresses what’s known as “negative option billing,” where you sign up for a free trial and you’re automatically switched to a full-price subscription when the trial is over. Customers are often not notified when a free trial ends until they’re charged. Others let customers sign up for a service online, but then require them to call a customer service line to cancel.
The bill would allow you to cancel a subscription the same way you signed up.
The bill also requires companies to provide consumers with a clear understanding of the terms of the contract.
U.S. Senators Brian Schatz (D-Hawai’i), John Thune (R-S.D.), Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.), and John Kennedy (R-La.) introduced the legislation.