While this article is off topic for Positive Space, I feel that what I am about to write must be shared. Basically I am completely fed up with Verizon Wireless and their horrible customer service and the usage of their rapidly changing policies as a scapegoat. Rather than sitting back and accepting the misrepresentation that I have been subjected to, I am choosing to share my story in hopes that I may at least inform other people of what I have gone through. If you have gone through the same thing or can sympathize with what I have experienced, then I ask that you help spread the word by linking to this article or sharing it with your social network of choice.
Update: I was able to resolve the issue today (4/15/08), and my account was credited the full amount of the termination fee. I would like to thank those responsible for helping me reach Verizon management. In the end the management was very helpful in solving my problem and making sure that my needs were met.
My initial reasons for calling…
Midway through last month I became aware that I would be subject to the second raise in text message rates since I had opened my contract. Because of this I chose to contact Verizon in order to contest the fees. I was told that I could not cancel my fee because their terms and conditions said that they reserved the right to change the prices. I had remembered reading that I had somewhere between 30 and 90 days to contest these charges however the representative told me that this was no where in the terms and conditions.
I was sure that I had read about my right to contest these fees, so I went online to find the terms and conditions when I found this portion:
UNLESS OTHERWISE PROHIBITED BY LAW, WE CAN ALSO CHANGE PRICES AND ANY OTHER CONDITIONS IN THIS AGREEMENT AT ANY TIME BY SENDING YOU WRITTEN NOTICE PRIOR TO THE BILLING PERIOD IN WHICH THE CHANGES WOULD GO INTO EFFECT. IF YOU CHOOSE TO USE YOUR SERVICE AFTER THAT POINT, YOU’RE ACCEPTING THE CHANGES. IF THE CHANGES HAVE A MATERIAL ADVERSE EFFECT ON YOU, HOWEVER, YOU CAN END THE AFFECTED SERVICE, WITHOUT ANY EARLY TERMINATION FEE, JUST BY CALLING US WITHIN 60 DAYS AFTER WE SEND NOTICE OF THE CHANGE.
The representative had read this exact phrase to me while leaving out the portion about the 60 days to contact them. So I called back and talked with another more helpful representative and explained how the representative had misrepresented the terms and conditions to me. I stated that I would like my contract canceled and the termination fee waived because I had been lied to. After talking with her representative I was allowed to do so. This however is not the end of the story.
Over a month later…
Today I received a bill from Verizon stating that I owed over 200 dollars in termination fees. I naturally called back to ask about this. I stated how I was told that my fees would be waived and that a supervisor has approved it. The representative looked into the issue and stated that another department within Verizon who is responsible for researching these cases and refused the termination fee removal. They stated that raising text messaging fees was not reason enough to cancel the contract and that as a result I had broken the terms of my contract. When I stated that that was not the reason my contract was originally allowed to be canceled I was told that it did not matter.
So I talked to another supervisor who stated the same thing, and refused to accept that I was not informed that there was a chance that I could have my termination fees reapplied. So I Was told to contact their corporate division through the online contact form. (which is limited to 200 characters hardly enough to explain this injustice). So now I wait. I wait to hear whether they will remove the fees that I was already told I would not be receiving.
What do I hope to accomplish with this article?
Basically if I can let other people hear my story I will at least feel a little better about having to go through this situation. After typing this article I somewhat feel better for letting as many people know as I can, If you can help me share this article I would really appreciate it. If anything this article can serve as a venting area for those who do not have the ability to reach a large audience as easily as me.
Thank you, and I apologize to my regular readers for going off subject however I feel almost everyone can relate to this article regardless of whether it relates to design or not.
Oh yeah, this is no April fools joke. Unless Verizon is playing one on me by making me think they were actually doing what they said they would…