Does your internet or TV provider owe you money for their service outages?

Robin Layton

Feb 5, 2024 — 5 min read

Find out which providers are liable for service outages and will credit your bill in the event of an interruption.

Turning your TV to your favorite channel and finding a blank screen is beyond aggravating, particularly since you are probably paying a premium to have that cable channel available 24/7. With cable bills running up to $150/mo., you need to ensure you are getting your money’s worth.

That same aggravation can be felt as you turn on your laptop to discover the “no internet” message. You could be spending over $200/mo. for an internet and TV bundle, which is a significant amount of money. It’s an even worse scenario if you work from home, and it could lead you to lose paid work hours.

Can I get discounted service after an internet or TV outage?

Whether or not you can get your TV service provider or internet service provider to give you a credit on your bill for any outages largely depends on the provider and how long of an outage it was. Only a handful of providers outline how outages will affect your bill, and most are ambiguous about what customers can do to address the issue. 

That may eventually change since the Spectrum vs. Disney blackout spurred the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to propose that cable and satellite providers issue rebates if a blackout lasts longer than 24 hours, like the Spectrum and Disney channel disagreement, which caused a 10-day block on some channels for Spectrum customers. The FCC also asks to create an online portal where providers must report such outages.

Providers are usually willing to offer credit to customers for internet outages, but you will need to call your ISP’s customer service number to discuss the details of your situation. 

We break down the policies of major providers and how you can negotiate your internet bill.


If your phone or internet service was out for 24 hours or more, you may be able to get a credit on your bill or a CenturyLink refund. You must first report the outage via phone or the company’s Troubleshooter app.


The DISH Reliability Guarantee ensures customers will get a credit on their bill for the outage length. Customers need to contact their DISH customer service agent to verify an outage, which will be noted on your account. 


Cox states they will not be liable for outages directly or indirectly caused by circumstances beyond their control. However, you may be able to speak to a customer service rep to get your bill prorated for the length of your outage.


Unless otherwise required under law, Spectrum says it will “provide you with the proportionate credit for those qualifying outages that last for four or more consecutive hours, after such interruption is reported to us and for which you have requested a credit within 60 days after the conclusion of such service outage.”


Internet customers who experienced a significant outage will get credit for their time without service. Frontier issued two numbers for customers to call if they are experiencing issues with their service. Residential customers should call 800.921.8101. Business customers can contact 800.921.8102.

Verizon Fios

Although Verizon will not refund you for a network outage, it may give credit for service outages for Fios TV and internet only if you request a credit. If you simply call in and report a service outage, Verizon will not credit you for the time that your service is out. You must make sure to ask for a credit for that specific time frame.


AT&T customers can get a service credit for any service that is not working; you just need to report it so that the service outage is documented. You need to request the credit from Customer Care. 

Xfinity Comcast

Comcast recently added the ability to ask for an Xfinity outage credit from your account page. You no longer need to call Comcast and wait on hold to talk to an agent for a credit. Now, it is automatically applied just by clicking the request a credit button.

See how other providers handle outages in their fine print details:

How to get your service outage credit

Call customer service

Even if your provider states they aren’t liable for a TV or internet outage and won’t be crediting you in the event of one, call anyway! Many customers have noted their success on user forums by simply giving their provider a call and talking through the issue. 

Let the representative know which services you currently subscribe to and for how long they were unavailable for your use. If the time is substantial, it’s more than likely you’ll receive a credit for the length of time your services were out.

One user suggests doing some simple math of your monthly cost versus the amount of time your services were down before calling. If the outage lasted less than 24 hours, you may be calling in for a refund amount of less than a dollar. 

If you’ve experienced a service outage, locate your provider’s customer service number from the directory below and explain your situation sooner rather than later.

Getting TV bill credits through third parties

Don’t feel like the hassle of trying to get your TV bill credited because of an outage? There are third party companies that will do it for you.

DoNotPay is an app that can contact your provider on your behalf, for a fee. Trim is a bot that uses Facebook Messenger. It’s free to use and will negotiate a lower bill or you can seek refunds for outages. If successful, it keeps 25% of whatever amount it saved you.

Troubleshooting cable and satellite outages

Service outages can be a major pain, but if you know the proper steps to take, you may be able to save some money for the inconvenience of your TV or internet outage. 

There are some ways to keep your internet on during a power outage and it may help with receiving a TV signal as well, depending on the cause of the outage. It’s also smart to be prepared for outages that leave you with no internet access, power or other necessary utilities.

Bill credits for outages FAQs

When are you eligible for a credit, rebate or bill proration for internet outages?

For disagreements between your provider and another company, you should ask to have your bill prorated, meaning you will be compensated for the time you did not have access to a service you are paying for. Some weather events may also be eligible for a bill credit or rebate. 

Divide your monthly internet bill by the number of days in the month your outage occurred then multiply that number by the number of days you were without service. That’ll give you a ballpark refund amount to ask for.

This is a trickier situation than a weather or contract-fueled outage. You can contact your provider and ask the policy on lost wages, but most will only credit the time your internet was out, not providing any other compensation. 

Robin Layton

Written by:

Robin Layton

Editor, Broadband Content

Robin Layton is an editor for the broadband marketplace Allconnect. She built her internet industry expertise writing and editing for four years on the site, as well as on Allconnect’s sister site … Read more