PSA: Sprint changed their ToS. You have until July 31 to get out of your contract free of charge.

July 8, 2013

sprint changes tos

Sprint is buying Clearwire, and merging with SoftBank. Any time there is a shift in the way a company does business, they often have to change their Terms of Service. While that may seem trivial to you, it also represents a way out of a contract you’re not happy with — free of charge.

Free?! No early termination fee? That’s right, friends, a change in your Terms of Service often lets you escape those obnoxious early termination fees altogether. In most cases, the subscriber has 30 days to challenge the new ToS and escape unscathed. Continuing to pay for service is basically your compliance with the new terms, so watch carefully for changes.

Material Change

Any change in the Terms of Service represent what is called “material change”. In legalese, a material change is any that alters the agreed upon terms. When you paid for your device and agreed to the service contract, you signed a contract. By changing the ToS, Sprint has effectively changed that contract, and vioded the agreement between yourself and them.

Sprint does not determine what material change is: that’s a legal term.

Now that Sprint has changed that contract, you may call customer support and ask that you be relieved of your contractual obligation due to adverse material changes in the terms of service. From the Sprint ToS:

If a change we make to the Agreement is material and has a material adverse effect on Services under your Term Commitment, you may terminate each line of Service materially adversely affected without incurring an Early Termination Fee only if: (a) call us within 30 days after the effective date of the change; (b) you specifically advise us that you wish to cancel Services because of a material change to the Agreement that we have made; and (c) we fail to negate the change after you notify us of your objection to it.
Sprint ToS

T-Mobile

So what changed?

Some language under “General Terms and Conditions.” While the changes aren’t poignant or structurally significant, they do represent a change in the terms of service. Any time a company changes something as simple as the language in your contract or ToS, you have the option to get out.

It also seems the change to LTE from WiMax has caused some language to be changed:

New Agreements on the Sprint 4G (WiMAX) Network: Your Service on a device activated on the Sprint 4G (WiMAX) Network may require a new one or two-year Agreement per line. Sprint expressly reserves the right to migrate your Service during this Agreement term from the Sprint 4G (WiMAX) Network to the Sprint 4G LTE network to complete your Agreement term. Reasonable advance notice of the Service change will be provided to impacted customers, who can then select one of the followingoptions: (a) Choose to complete the Agreement term using your existing device without 4G (WiMAX) capability (b) Elect to complete the Agreement term by contacting us after receiving notice from Sprint to transition to the Sprint 4G LTE networkwith no additional term commitment required (Transition Option)(c) Deactivate service. Deactivations because of this Service change will not result in an Early Termination Fee (ETF).
Sprint ToS

The bottom line

You may not have the best experience with Sprint, and this is your opportunity to get out of the contract. Sprint does not determine what material change is: that’s a legal term. Any and all changes to a contract represent material change, and you have the right to terminate the contract free of charge when any carrier makes changes.

I have no regrets about saving $77/month with prepaid service compared to my Sprint “everything” plan.

Speaking personally, I left Sprint when the Nexus 4 came available. I have no regrets about saving $77/month with prepaid service compared to my Sprint “everything” plan. We’ve already covered how to get one of the best plans available for T-Mobile prepaid, so please consider this another step in your evolution toward contract-free living!

If you’re ready to get out of your Sprint contract, be sure to do so by July 31. It may also be a good idea to not pay any monthly service bill until you have come to an understanding with Sprint about your desire to end the contract. Be sure to cover your bases, also: my experiences with Sprint often led to undocumented conversations on their end, so get something in writing (email should be fine) from customer service that officially states your desire to end the contract. This also doesn’t mean you need to leave Sprint immediately, as the termination of a contract will just put you on a month-to-month plan as though your contract had naturally expired.

If you’re interested in cancellation, dial *6 from your Sprint phone to speak to customer service, or call (888) 211-4727. To send a letter certified mail regarding your desire to end the contract (recommended by some lawyers), mail to:

Sprint Corporation

Customer Service Department

6200 Sprint Parkway

Overland Park, KS 66251

Some in the Sprint Community are reporting difficulty in getting Sprint to let them out. It’s those who stick to their guns and fight hard that win, so be diligent and unwavering in your desire to leave.

Comments

  • Myles Johnson

    only for accounts with wimax devices

  • Myles Johnson

    only for accounts with wimax devices

  • AndroidShiz

    if they really do start letting people out, the only reason they would do that is because they’re going to start getting rid of the unlimited plans just like AT&T. At&t tricked a lot of people to get rid of their unlimited plans before Netflix was introduced. I realized that as soon as I read the rumor of Netflix coming full on to the iOS platform and some other data intensive items iOS was introducing. sure enough that’s exactly what they did and now you pay $30 for the same amount as the unlimited plan. They enticed everybody with the $5 savings and two gigabytes of data, and then quickly got rid of that plan and introduced the $30 plan for 3 gigabytes of data. Glad I kept my unlimited plan. I sure can’t wait for Google to get their own wireless network.

  • Lashek powell

    AT&T ,or Verizon fanboy hating on sprint.If the writer want to talk about something, talk about how Verizon ,and AT&T paid you to Bashed sprint today?

    • AndroidShiz

      Holy cow. My cover has been blown. AT&T and Verizon are paying me to make comments indeed. Don’t even stop to think about it because it totally makes sense. You my dear sir are a complete and total universal genius of epic proportions. (please note the lack of exclamation points) I’m not a fan of either or I’ve been on almost every network possible because I have gone through about 52 top of the line phones in the last few yrs. if this new merger doesn’t get rid of the unlimited plans soon I will be shocked. all I know are the facts. AT&T got rid of unlimited plans before the Netflix app that has nothing to do with being a fanboy.

      • Lashek powell

        Okay your not a fan boy ,what are you .because what your saying is not accurate. what about competition ? if sprint decided to take away unlimited Data ,everyone would go back to AT&T , or Verizon .I think you know that ,that’s why I accused you of being paid into making these ,presumptuous claims.I think you need some more sand ,because your Crabs need some rest !

        • aidengraham

          What is unlimited data if its slower than dialup? Useless.

        • AndroidShiz

          Oh my bad. I realize now that you’re not in the US. That explains why your comments don’t make any sense. That crab comment? Nope.

      • JackO

        I like your post, but Kazakhstan? C’mon, not everybody in there is Borat :)))

    • Mark Mann

      it’s funny how the only competitor to sprint that was mentioned in the article was t-mo…i didn’t see any sprint bashing other than him saying that he went pre-paid and couldn’t be happier

      • Lashek powell

        We talking about a guy who makes a middle class income ,but then again went prepaid !?! Most of us who reply to this article probably make less and under a $80 to $120 2 year contract ,which we can afford ,because we love our phones and our provider.I don’t trust this guy Judgement?

        • Mark Mann

          my point was, everyone is saying he’s bashing sprint…and i didn’t see any of it

          • Lashek powell

            Bashing is bashing ! Don’t be confused like a homeless man ,on house arrest ?

          • Mark Mann

            honestly? i don’t see any bashing at all…the only comments that could be construed as bashing were that he went pre-paid and couldnt be happier…unless you took the “you may not have had the best experience with Sprint and this is the opportunity to get out of your contract”

    • Elmo S.

      Lashek Powell, most of us don’t want out of the contract to just get out. I live in San Antonio and the service is horrible. I can’t connect to 4g and when I do it’s slow. I get a lot of dropped calls, and text messages don’t go thru all the time. Sprint’s network is not 100% in major cities like they claim it is.

      • Wagner

        Elmo S. I have been with Sprint for more than 15 years. The service has been EXTREMELY horrible for the last 9 months. We do not have access to 4G at all in Colorado. Calls are being dropped all the time. Text and e-mails have delays in time receives and delivered. Whenever, we report the problem we are told the towers are getting maintenance done (how much maintenance do they require). For the last approx 1 1/2 yrs we have been told by Sprint representatives they are just waiting to turn a switch on for the 4G LTE. Flick the switch already PLEASE.

  • seven2k

    Any success stories out there?

    • aidengraham

      Yep. They said it wasn’t a material change lawyer sent a letter defining material change and showing the language changed on 7/1 got a call today etfs waived and I’m back on Att. Dear god how I missed this kind of service. This could easily lead to a class action lawsuit. I’m taking them to small claims court for time spent dealing with the issue and my attorney fees.

      • Jacob

        What kind of lawyer do I need? I tried cancelling and they refused to cancel without an early termination fee. Should I cancel and then talk to a lawyer?

      • mirt

        Please do tell us what kind of lawyer we need

        • aidengraham

          Aiden here again my lawyer does basic attorney things contracts being one of them we keep him on retainer so he only charged me 150 to send the letter and if they had failed to respond I would have paid to file. Any contract or lawyer worth his name should be able to help.

  • ROXY GOMEZ

    Just got off the phone with sprint and guess what…they said their terms have not changed however when you go to http://shop2.sprint.com/en/legal/legal_terms_privacy_popup.shtml?ECID=vanity:termsandconditions it show an effective date of 7/1/2013
    meaning they changed their TOS…however they don’t want cancel my contract and waive the ETF. c’mon sprint really…

    • Noe

      I ran into the same problem.

  • Me

    Customer service is claiming this is not a material change or that the material change does not affect me or my contract.

  • ROXY GOMEZ

    Just spoke to the escalations dept. and they said in the prevoius contract they stated that the language of the contract can be changed at any time….does any one know where i can get a copy of the old contract ?

    • seven2k

      check the link they have what they changed

    • Mark

      material change is “A change in the meaning or language of a legal document, such as a contract, deed, lease, or Commercial Paper, that is made by one party to the document without the consent of the other after it has been signed or completed.”

    • aidengraham

      That’s a legally unenforceable clause. Material change is material change no clause can make it okay for them to change it. Hence my zero balance and waived etc as of today. Class action lawsuit anyone?

  • Mark
  • End in sight

    Dang. I almost wish I had Sprint just so I could take this opportunity to quit.

    Nah, too much bother and TMo has been too good to me (cheap) over the past 3 years.

  • Terry Edwards

    Appreciate the article but since I’m waiting patiently for the note 3/ lg g2 to come out it wouldn’t make sense for me to jump to another carrier @ the moment… and Sprint has good coverage in my area…

  • Mark Steele

    So I just spent the better part of 1/2 an hour explaining this information to a customer service escalation staff member. They claim that because I was not a NexTel customer that this change doesn’t affect me and I am not eligible to be released from my contract without an early term fee.

    I have asked to have this escalated to management but am not hopeful.

    • Mark Steele

      Just got a call from Michael – apparently the highest customer facing service representative on the planet who tells me that I am done, out of luck and not going to get anywhere with this.

      It was just a dream after all – has anyone had success – if not, I call the PSA a bit misleading and busted.

      • aidengraham

        My lawyer sent them a letter sprint does NOT get to define what a material change is and by legal definition this is a material change to the tos. Got a call today from executive office relieved of my etfs and back on Att the real carrier.

  • ScoutSniperUSMC

    Just called Sprint customer service and they said that the deal hasn’t been finalized and that they are expecting ZERO change in their TOS, so, sorry but no contract cancellation for you. I quoted the entire article verbatim to the supervisor I eventually was put in contact with and she seemed very uncertain about the situation but stuck to her guns. She advised that IF there was a change in the TOS I would be notified via mail and given the chance to cancel my contract. She also seemed very miffed at AA for posting this info that everyone should be aware of.

  • Lashek powell

    This should shut the Fanboys up:MENU
    Leaked Sprint document shows new Unlimited, My Way and My All-In plans (update: confirmed, launches July 12th)  Mobilehttp://www.engadget.com/2013/07/10/sprint-leak-shows-new-unlimited-plans/

  • Lashek powell

    This should shut the Fanboys up:MENU
    Leaked Sprint document shows new Unlimited, My Way and My All-In plans (update: confirmed, launches July 12th)  Mobilehttp://www.engadget.com/2013/07/10/sprint-leak-shows-new-unlimited-plans/

  • Sherry D. Jackson

    I tried it too and was told that this does not apply to my account. I have canceled anyway and sent a letter to confirm it to Sprint Corporate.

  • cborba

    I called earlier today and the customer rep said that it doesn’t effect my contract to consider it a material change to relieve me from my contract and I would have to pay the ETF..if any of you know how to get pass this I would really like to know..I’m really tired of sprint and wish to change carriers

    • aidengraham

      Draft a letter send it certified if it doesn’t work sue in small claims they let me out today after my lawyer did all of this for me. They don’t get to choose what a material change is any change in language is a material change

  • Just Jessie

    I was told they aren’t letting anyone out of their contracts at this time I’ve been with Sprint since 2005

  • Steve Cooper

    Thank you soo much. I called and tried to cancel before reading this article and they told me I couldn’t do it. But after reading this, I read their TOS to them and after being on hold for 15 mins, they came back and let me out.

  • Papichulo

    Call sprint tell them to summit a form and get a lawyer to make you a letter and go to the court house to get a certified letter to cancel your services and they will get out of the contract!

  • CRAZY_JOE

    25 JULY 2013

    TO:

    Sprint Corporation

    Customer Service Department

    6200 Sprint Parkway

    Overland Park, KS 66251

    FROM:

    Joseph XXXXX

    XXXX XXXX XXXXXXXXX Road

    XXXXX XXXXXXX, PA XXXXX

    Account #: XXXXXXXXX

    RE: To be relieved of my contractual obligation with Sprint
    due to adverse material changes in the General Terms and Conditions of Service
    agreement as it relates to Sprint’s merger with Softbank and the Clearwire
    acquisition.

    To whom it may concern,

    I am respectfully writing you to request relief of my
    contractual obligation due to adverse material changes in the terms of service
    as stated in your General Terms and Conditions of Service, Effective 7/1/13:

    “…If a change we make to the Agreement is material and has a
    material adverse effect on Services under your Term Commitment, you may
    terminate each line of Service materially adversely affected without incurring
    an Early Termination Fee only if: (a) call us within 30 days after the
    effective date of the change; (b) you specifically advise us that you wish to
    cancel Services because of a material change to the Agreement that we have
    made; and (c) we fail to negate the change after you notify us of your
    objection to it. If you do not notify us and cancel Service within 30 days of
    the change, an Early Termination Fee will apply if you terminate Services
    before the end of any applicable Term Commitment.”

    Sprint ToS

    Our Right to Change the Agreement & Your
    Related Rights Section

    Effective 1 JULY 2013

    My understanding of the differences within your recently
    updated General Terms and Conditions of Service (effective 1 JULY 2013) and the
    General Terms and Conditions of Service I agreed to on 23 NOVEMBER 2012 isn’t poignant
    or structurally significant, they do represent a change in the terms of
    service.

    Sprint Corporation does not determine what material change
    is. Legally, a material change is “A change in the meaning or language of
    a legal document, such as a contract, deed, lease, or Commercial Paper, that is
    made by one party to the document without the consent of the other after it has
    been signed or completed.” Any and all changes (including something as
    simple as language) to a contract represents material change, and I have the
    right to terminate my contract, free of charge, when any carrier makes changes.

    As a long time Sprint customer, I can honestly say that the
    recent call I made to your customer service department (the resolution
    department specifically) was the most disrespectful phone call I have ever been
    a part of in my professional lifetime. I understand that Sprint may not want to
    lose any customers, especially long time customers like myself. However, I
    didn’t realize the lows in which a single Sprint employee would ultimately
    reach in an attempt to retain them.

    I asked your “Senior Resolution Agent” to explain the change
    to Sprints General Terms and Conditions of Service in regards to Sprints merger
    with Softbank and the acquisition of Clearwire. She said,”I’m not familiar with
    any of that”. After I further explained what I was referring to, she quickly
    interrupted me and said, “Sir, your speeds will increase and it will be better
    for you”. She rudely went on to say, “There is no changes to the Terms of
    Service agreement and that when you choose to enter into a renewed contract
    back on 23 NOVEMBER 2012, you waived your rights and any chance of terminating
    without an Early Termination Fee”. I explained that the ETF does not apply in
    this case because of the change to the General Terms and Conditions of Service
    (ToS) agreement. She then said, “I see you’ve been with us for almost thirteen
    years, which means you renewed your contract with us at least six times, Sprint
    can’t be all that bad, right”. I couldn’t believe what I was being told. The
    conversation went nowhere after her last comment and she made it very clear
    that I cannot cancel my contract without an Early Termination Fee. I explained
    that I wasn’t ready to leave sprint yet, but that I just wanted to be relieved
    of my contractual obligation due to the change to Sprint’s General Terms and
    Conditions of Service and instead return to a month-to-month agreement. She
    continued her unprofessional barrage of chastising me about how Sprint couldn’t
    be all that bad since I renewed six times. When I asked to speak to someone
    else that had knowledge of the facts in this situation she said, “You’re
    talking to her. There’s no one higher than me and I’m telling you there is no
    Terms of Service change and if you want to cancel, there’s an Early Termination
    Fee for that”. I said that I would call back to speak to someone else,
    preferably higher up the management chain. She said, “If you call back, they’ll
    transfer you to me”. UNBELIEVEABLE! I felt like I was being bullied into not
    cancelling even though I was well within my right to call and inquire about my
    rights as a consumer.

    I hope you are able to research for and ultimately locate
    the phone conversation (since I was recorded for quality assurance and training purposes) and determine the identification of your “Senior Resolution Agent” who has rudely proclaimed an almost exclusive right to any and all phone conversations and/or account maintenance EVERYTIME I attempt to contact Sprint. It shouldn’t be too difficult especially since she said she would “Flag my account and that anytime I called in it would go directly to her”. THIS IS UNACCEPTABLE BEHAVIOR! This phone call occurred on 25 JULY 2013 at
    approximately 7:30pm. Show a long time customer you actually care and listen to that phone conversation, you could use it as training material of WHAT NOT TO DO.

    My service has been degrading in recent years, especially in
    the last year and a half. I have been promised it will get better with the
    rollout of the new Tower Upgrades, Software patches and so on. Frankly, I’m
    tired of all the empty promises and the monthly phone calls I have to make just
    to get justly compensated for my “Inconvenience”. If some one did something as simple as looked at my account history of phone calls, billing credits and
    general complaints, it will reveal what an absolute inconvenience it really has
    been. I’m sure Sprint doesn’t enjoy crediting me every time I call in.

    I hope Sprint does the right thing here and relieves me of
    my contractual obligation due to adverse material changes in the General Terms and Conditions of Service agreement as it relates to Sprint’s merger with
    Softbank and the Clearwire acquisition. It is my wish that Sprint also respects
    my rights and decisions as a long time customer and wireless consumer.

    Thank you,

    Joe XXXXXXXX

  • Matt

    Sprint is a piece of garbage. I’m fighting with them right now to get out of my contract; the jerks won’t let me.

  • Marlon Medina

    I live about an hour from Sprint Corporate HQ. It would have been quicker for me to drive to Overland Park, than to call them from my cell phone. I wish I had known about this early out soon. Now, it’s too late.