How to get out of a 3 year cable contract?

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How to get out of a 3 year cable contract?

I opened a business 7 months ago and supposedly signed a 3 year contract with a cable provider (which I don’t remember doing but do not deny the possibility). Unfortunately, my business was failing so I closed it. The cable company is telling me that in order to get out of the contract I have to either pay a cancellation fee, transfer the services to my house, or to transfer it to someone else. Is there any other way to do this?

Asked on January 30, 2012 under Business Law, California


Glenn M. Lyon, Esq. / MacGregor Lyon, LLC.

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Unless you can work out something with the service provider, it would have the right to hold your company to the terms of the agreement.

If you would like to discuss any issues further, please feel free to contact my office.  The link to my contact information is below.  Thank you.

The foregoing is general information only, not specific legal advice. No attorney/client relation has been created or should be implied.

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

You can only get out of a contract if--

1) The contract, by its very terms allows you to do so (e.g. lets you cancel on notice or on payment of a fee);

2) The other party agrees to let you out, and you comply with whatever tems or conditions it proposed for that;

3) The other party breached a material (or important/critical) term of the contract;

4) You had been induced to sign the contract by fraud (i.e. the other party knowingly made a material misrepresentation, or lie, to get you to sign, which misrepresentation you relied upon and which it was reasonable for you to rely upon);

5) You and the other party both made a significant mistake--e.g. you somehow signed a contract which didn't mean, under the actual circumstances, what you both thought it meant; or

6) The contract was illegal, or became impossible due to objective circumstances beyond both of your control (e.g. you signed an agreement to buy someone's boat; before you could buy it, the boat sank in a big storm).

Apart from the above, you'd be bound by the contract, even if you don't need the service or the contract is no longer economicaly viable for you.

If the contract was signed not by you personally but by your business, and the business was an LLC or corporation, you would not be personally liable for the contract unless you personally guaranteed it; you could, if you are shutting your business down, effectively walk away from it.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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