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Eir’s new billing system results in fines for some customers

Undisclosed number of eir customers hit with €18.45 charge after new billing system rejects their card details

Eir has said a switch to a new billing system in March has resulted in an undisclosed number of account holders being hit with an €18.45 charge for non-payment, which is to be added to their April bills.

The problem arose when the new billing system identified customers whose debit or credit cards had been lost and replaced, since at least last August.

Up to February of this year the old billing system was able to take payments from customer accounts, regardless of whether a customer’s bank had issued them with a new card, containing new card numbers.

However, on moving to the new billing system, an undisclosed number of accounts where the holders had new cards, were deemed to have returned the direct debit unpaid.


Affected customers were not specifically advised of the issue and regular billing advice issued in the last week carried the €18.45 charge, which was added to the March bill and is due for payment in April.

For Eir customers on the standard 12-month contract which offers up to 500MB, for €34.99 per month, the €18.45 charge represents a penalty of more than 50 per cent.

Eir said the problem did not apply to those whose cards were automatically renewed by their bank, in these cases the card numbers generally remained the same.

The company, which has about one million customers on its billing system said: “Regarding the number of people impacted by disruptions due to outdated card details or billing system migrations, it’s important to note that these instances are relatively rare.”

“In the few cases where customers encounter unexpected charges due to an outdated card number on file, we can address each situation individually and strive to resolve them promptly.”

The company said payments for Eir services that are initiated by the customer providing credit or debit card numbers differ from other forms of direct debits such as mortgage or car loan payments, which are usually based on the customers’ bank account numbers. Bank account numbers, unlike debit or credit card numbers do not change when cards are replaced.

Tim O'Brien

Tim O'Brien

Tim O'Brien is an Irish Times journalist