What happens to your cell phone contract when you die?

When Bronwyn Sharrock lost her husband in a motorcycle accident six weeks ago she found that his bank account was still being debited each month by Vodacom.

She visited the cell network provider with the hope of having the contracts of three phones which her husband was paying for cancelled, but she was told she has to continue paying for them.

Vodacom's Byron Kennedy explains how the terms of these contracts work even after death.

A mobile contract is no different to the like of a mortgage and credits cards, those do become the responsibility of the estate and that is the policy.

Byron Kennedy, Vodacom

Spokesperson at the National Consumer Commission, Trevor Hattingh says the family of the deceased must be afforded the right to cancel a contract when they approach any outlet.

One of the things we lack in the business environment is the fact that consumers are being treated like objects. I take your money and give you something in exchange and forget that you are also a human being with feelings. There should be some Ubuntu and some humanity.

Trevor Hattingh, Spokesperson at National Consumer Commission

A cell phone contract remains active until one of the parties involved terminates or cancels expressly in writing or any other recordable form.

Trevor Hattingh, Spokesperson at National Consumer Commission

A consumer has a right to cancel a contract at any stage of the contract at any stage but what must be understood is the consumer might be liable to pay for cancellation fees.

Trevor Hattingh, Spokesperson at National Consumer Commission

To hear the rest of the conversation, listen below:


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