Tuesday, November 30

Netflix’s price hike, under scrutiny by the authorities: Facua assures that it is abusive and asks for sanctions for the company

Facua has asked the national and regional consumer authorities to investigate the latest Netflix price hike in Spain, as they consider it abusive. The consumer defense organization points out that the justification for the on-demand content platform to increase its rates It is based on a clause that violates the rights of users, as it gives the US company the ability to modify at will and unilaterally the conditions of the contract established with its customers without valid reasons, according to they report in a note.

Facua bases his accusation on article 85 of the General Law for the Defense of Consumers and Users, which in its third section states that “the clauses that reserve in favor of the employer the powers of interpretation or unilateral modification of the contract, unless, in the latter case, there are valid reasons specified in the contract ”.

The consumer organization explains that Netflix has based this price increase on a clause included in its terms of use what textually says: “We can change our subscription plans and their price when we consider it appropriate”. A reason that Facua, by virtue of the aforementioned rule, does not seem valid, since it is based on the mere will of the company to upload it, something that the law considers abusive.

Nor does it consider valid the justification that Netflix has given to its customers when communicating the increase in the price of the Standard and Premium plans, which has appeared to many users these days when entering the application: “We keep adding the best titles to Netflix so you can continue to enjoy even more”.

Announcement of the Netflix rate increase.

For the complaint, Facua also relies on several articles from the Civil Code that protect the parties to a contract. Among them, article 1,256, which states that “the validity and fulfillment of contracts cannot be left to the discretion of one of the contracting parties”, and article 1,258, which states that “contracts are concluded by mere consent, and since then they oblige not only the fulfillment of what is expressly agreed, but also all the consequences that, according to their nature, are in accordance with good faith, use and the law ”.

Netflix ensures that everything is legal

Netflix, for its part, defends that the price increase has been carried out in a completely legal way, since they consider that the improvement of the series and movies catalog, as well as the quality of the service provided by its platform, justify said increase, as explained a company spokesperson to Engadget. They also argue that, since there is no type of permanence, If the consumer does not agree with this change, they can cancel the subscription at any time or change plans, since the Basic maintains its cost of 7.99 euros per month.

It should be remembered that Netflix announced the rise pricing for two of the three plans currently offered in early October. With it, the Standard will go from 11.99 euros to 12.99 euros per month and the Premium from 15.99 euros to 17.99 euros per month, an increase that will be effective as of December 4.

This is how things will now be the competent authorities, which will have to decide whether Facua’s complaint has grounds enough to justify an investigation and a possible sanction or, on the contrary, Netflix’s arguments are valid and, therefore, the increase in two of its three rates in Spain is not abusive.

The consumer organization has denounced Netflix to the General Directorate of Consumption of the Ministry of the same name, and before the authorities of consumer protection authorities of the seventeen autonomous communities of Spain.


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