INDIANAPOLIS — A proposed rule change from the Federal Trade Commission would make it easier to cancel subscriptions that can be difficult to get out of.

The goal is to make the process as easy as “click to cancel,” according to the FTC’s proposal. If you can easily sign up online, you should be able to easily cancel online without having to talk to customer service or jump through hoops.

All kinds of companies have become notorious, almost to the point of cliché, for making subscriptions easy to sign up for but frustratingly difficult to quit. They often entice customers with free trials or low promotional rates but increase prices after a month or two.

The new FTC rules would require paid subscriptions to have a simple mechanism for canceling, possibly as easy as a single “click to cancel” option. The canceling process would take place in the same website as the sign-up process.

New requirements are also proposed for when companies try to make additional offers at the time of cancellation. Before the company can offer you something else, they have to ask if you want to hear the offer. And they must take “no” for an answer. 

The rules would also have new requirements for reminders and confirmations about your subscriptions. Those could require a company to send you an annual reminder before your subscription automatically renews. 

The FTC is still asking for public comments about the rule proposals. If you want to send input, you can write “Negative Option Rule; Project No. P064202” on your comment and file your comment online through

If you prefer to file your comment on paper, mail your comment to the following address: 

Federal Trade Commission, Office of the Secretary, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Suite CC–5610 (Annex N), Washington, DC 20580.