Hotel Wi-Fi Lawsuit
Last Updated on January 11, 2022
Attorneys working with ClassAction.org are no longer investigating this matter. The information here is for reference only. A list of open investigations and lawsuits can be viewed here.
At A Glance
- This Alert Affects
- People who used personal Wi-Fi hotspots while staying at a hotel or conference center.
- What's Going On?
- Allegations have surfaced that hotels may be jamming guests' Wi-Fi signals and charging fees for guests to access the hotel's own Wi-Fi network.
- Is It Legal For Hotels To Block My Wi-Fi?
- No. In January 2015, the FCC issued a public notice warning that "Wi-Fi blocking is prohibited." In October 2014, the agency fined Marriot hotels $600,000 for blocking guests' personal hotspots.
Attorneys are investigating potential lawsuits against hotels and conference centers that jam or block individuals’ personal Wi-Fi signals.
What Started This Investigation?
In January 2015, the FCC released a public notice expressly prohibiting persons or businesses from blocking Wi-Fi hot spots. In it, the FCC notes that:
“In the 21st Century, Wi-Fi represents an essential on-ramp to the Internet. Personal Wi-Fi networks, or ‘hot spots,’ are an important way that consumers connect to the Internet. Willful or malicious interference with Wi-Fi hot spots is illegal.”
This public notice followed a 2014 Enforcement Bureau investigation into Marriot International, Inc. over allegations that the hotels deployed a “deauthentification protocol” to block consumers who tried to connect to the Internet using their own hot spots. While the company claimed its actions were done to protect its customers from unsafe connections, the FCC found that Marriot broke the law and levied a civil penalty of $600,000. The company is no longer allowed to block Wi-Fi signals and must now file compliance orders with the FCC every three months for the next three years.
This Happened to Me. What Can I Do?
If you experienced problems accessing your personal Wi-Fi while staying at a hotel or conference, speak with an attorney in your area. Attorneys are trying to determine whether lawsuits can be filed against hotels that intentionally block their guests’ personal Wi-Fi hot spots and need to hear from people who believe this happened to them. A lawsuit could help consumers seek compensation for money spent purchasing hotel Wi-Fi.
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