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April 27, 2020

Comcast extends ban on Xfinity service shutoffs, late fees through June due to COVID-19 pandemic

Customers will also continue to receive free unlimited data

Utilities Comcast
Xfinity internet coronavirus Glenn Carstens-Peters/via Unsplash

Comcast is providing Xfinity customers with a number of services during the coronavirus pandemic.

Xfinity customers will not have their internet, mobile, or voice services disconnected, or receive late fees through June 30 due to the coronavirus outbreak, Comcast announced on Monday. 

The Philadelphia-based cable and internet company said that customers should first let them know about their inability to pay their bills during the pandemic to both ensure that they don’t receive late fees and help explore flexible payment options. 

Business and outdoor Xfinity WiFi hotspots will continue to remain free for anyone, including non-Xfinity internet subscribers. Xfinity customers will also continue to receive unlimited data at no additional charge, and the company said that it will continue offering 60 days of free internet access for qualified low-income families through its “Internet Essentials” program instead of charging users $9.95 per month.

Comcast, which initially rolled out these measures in March at the beginning of the crisis, improved broadband speed last month for its “Internet Essentials” program from 15/2 Megabits per second to 25/3 Mbps.

The decision to extend these initiatives through June was made to ensure students can finish the rest of the school year from home and remain connected during the COVID-19 pandemic, Comcast said. Due to the coronavirus outbreak, schools remain closed and stay-at-home orders are in place across the Philly region to mitigate the spread of the virus and encourage social distancing.

“These extended measures will continue to keep Americans safe and ensure that households are equipped for students to learn and stay informed at home as the nation copes with this unprecedented disruption to our daily lives,” said Dave Watson, who serves as Comcast Cable’s Chief Executive Officer. “Our services have never been more important, and we’re doing everything we can to keep people connected to the internet.”

New Jersey announced on April 13 that residents who cannot afford to pay for their internet and phone bills will not lose service during the coronavirus outbreak, as Gov. Phil Murphy signed an executive order banning providers from stopping service due to nonpayment.

Any internet or phone service that had been disconnected since March 16 was ordered to be reconnected, and any service downgrades, reductions or late fees due to nonpayment must be halted unless approved otherwise by the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities. The ban lasts until 30 days after the state’s public health emergency ends.

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