Verizon, It's Been 4 months, 16 days Since FiOS Was Installed. Where's My Free LCD TV?

Reader Chris had Verizon FiOS installed back in January, and like so many other Verizon customers, he’s been unable to get the free LCD he was promised. Chris sent us a timeline of his struggles with Verizon. It’s a long, frustrating read…

Chris writes:

We had the triple play installed back on Jan 11th, 2008 and have yet to receive any paperwork. I have called and emailed every other week since originally accepting their Terms of Service online the night it was installed and received nothing. Here are some of the things I have been told:
————–
1/18/08 via email:

RESPONSE: Thank you for contacting the Verizon eCenter. I have received your email dated Jan 17, 2008 regarding the LCD TV. My name is Albert, and I will be happy to assist you.

Two to three weeks after all your bundle components are installed and working you will receive a letter in the U.S. Mail. The letter will include a username and password for a website address to redeem the promotion. A toll-free number, (866)279-0438, is available if you are unable to access the url or do not receive the information. Please allow four to ten weeks to receive your gift award after the date you go through the reward claims process.

Although additional follow-up may be needed, it has been my goal today to address your concerns. I hope I have succeeded in meeting that goal. In the meantime, if you have any other questions, please let us know. We look forward to serving you.
————–
2/21/08 via email:

To Verizon: It has been almost 6 weeks to date from the installation of our FIOS bundled package and we still have NOT received any paperwork concerning the LCD tv redemption. This is really getting frustrating as we feel we have been more than patient waiting for the paperwork through the mail. Can someone not get this resolved for us, and not with the canned response of “please allow another4 – 6 weeks”? The whole reason we decided to go with Verizon’s bundled package and not someone else was because of the tv offer. Can a supervisor authorize for the information to be emailed to me concerning the promotion?

RESPONSE: Thank you for responding to my last email. You had additional questions about the TV promotion.

If you have not received the information, contact the office at (866) 279-0438 and they will check the status and make sure that the package has or will be sent.

Thank you for using Verizon. We appreciate your business.

Sincerely,
Albert
Verizon eCenter

————–
2/23/08 telephone call to Verizon –
Called @ 4:45 spoke to Brian – told me to check back 1 week if no paperwork via snail mail.

————–
2/29/08 telephone call to Verizon -
Called @ 3:06 pm to follow up to Verizon installation 7 weeks ago – still have received nothing concerning tv promo/$200 best buy card. 3:27 pm Spoke to ??? and she is submitting request for rebate to her supervisor.

————–

3/24/08 telephone call to Verizon –
Called 4:47 pm on hold until 5:05 – requested to be transfered to supervisor – Melinda… letter never went out from installation… Referred to billing – 5:15 Melinda transferred to billing – on hold until 5:36 spoke w/jessica and transferred to FIOS…on hold until we hung up at 6:31 pm!!!!!!!!!

already talked to rebate dept multiple times. Billing records are not indicating/flagging us as eligible for 19″ LCDHDTV rebate- what is keeping it from the rebate dept… Installation date was 1/11/08 and we have never received any paperwork to begin the rebate process even though I have emailed and spoke with various people. Now 10 weeks and still no info or anything else…
————–
3/25/08 telephone call to Verizon

called general billing 1-800-483-3000 9:06 automated voice mail 6 min wait for next avail assoc. Frank – 9:15 – shooting email to supervisor to ask her to over ride and cause letter to be generated – does not appear to him that we accepted TOS online – but I did within 48 hours of installation – actually that evening. Informed that we are considering canceling the WHOLE verizon acct over this.

RESPONSE via email: Dear Verizon FiOS Customer,

On MAR 25, 2008 you ordered Verizon FiOS Triple Freedom (24-month option) that provides discounts off the standard monthly rates for your Verizon Freedom Essentials, FiOS Internet and FiOS TV Premier services. We are delighted to have you as a Verizon FiOS Triple Freedom customer, but in order for you to receive the discounted rates, you must go to the following website at….
————–
4/24/08 telephone call to Verizon

[ed-- same story as 3/25]
————–
5/12/08 email to Verizon

Still trying to get resolution on 19″ LCD HDTV/BestBuy gift card promotional rebate from January 2008. Installation date 1/11/2008. Am not able to follow up by phone today as my son is not feeling well. I have called MULTIPLE times trying to get this resolved with no results. I am now to the point of being very angry as this was to be my son’s birthday present May 1st, 2008!!! I am about ready to contact the local television stations and let them publicly try and resolve this with Verizon as I have been MORE THAN PATIENT up to this point and time. Below are a few of the conversations I have documented and one of the original emails. Please have someone reply accordingly within the next 48 hours as to the status of our rabate. My wife, Christine [redacted], will be the cotact person via telephone calls at this time as I am at work and not able to personally resolve this over the phone.
————–
5/14/08 email to Verizon
no response from Verizon. Never received ” confirmation email with a tracking number shortly. ” Emailing through their contacted site again with the following:

We will be contacting the Public Service Commission within the next 30 days concerning there being no resolution on 19″ LCD HDTV/BestBuy gift card promotional rebate from January 2008. Our Installation date 1/11/2008; on that same day we accepted the TOS online as directed but to this day have never received the appropriate paperwork to claim our rebate. We have made MULTIPLE attempts via telephone and email regarding this with no results. Please have someone review this immediately and respond to us as we have BEEN MORE THAN PATIENT. Please note that copies of all email communications and conversations will also be released to the local tv stations to alert future customers of the hassles that might befall them. Four months is not acceptable – Verizon would not wait 4 months plus for a dispute resolution with one of their accounts.

EMAIL RESPONSE: Dear verizon.com customer,

Thank you for contacting our customer support team at the Verizon
eCenter. An account associate is reviewing your inquiry and will
respond via email within one business day. Please keep the subject
line unchanged if you wish to reply to this email.
————–
5/14/08 LIVE CHAT online w/Verizon

Welcome to Verizon Live Chat. You have selected to chat about:
TN: 7273799152
Subject: None of the categories apply to my question or comment (No subcategory)
Question: We have never received ANY paperwork since our package installation 1/11/08 on the 19′ LCD HDTV/BestBuy gift card promotional rebate despite MULTIPLE CALLS to the billing and rewards depts. We are seriously considering contacting the Public Service Commission about this.
16:07:12 A Verizon eCenter Representative will be with you shortly. Thank you.

Angela: I apologize for the delay in receiving the letter for the 19 inch TV or $200 Best Buy promo offer.
Angela: I will be glad to send an inquiry over to fulfillment to check the status.
Angela: May I get your email address for follow up? You will receive an email response within 2 business days.
Chris: The tv was to have been a birthday present for our son…whose birthday was May 1st. Not angry at you – just at the system as we have been patient and keep getting the run around. [redacted]
Angela: I have sent the inquiry over to fulfillment for the status on the TV.
Chris: Thank you
Angela: Is there anything else I can help you with?
Chris: If I do not hear back within 2 days I will attempt further contact again.
Chris: No thank you…this is my only problem with Verizon at this time.
Angela: Thank you for using Verizon’s chat service. If you have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact us again.

Online Support and information for all our Verizon products and services can also be found at: http://help.verizon.com
Verizon Live Chat

It was a pleasure to assist you. Your chat session has ended. Thank You.

————–
5/20/2008 As of this time I have NOT received ANY sort of response from Verizon as promised.

We’ve been advising readers to file complaints with their state’s attorney general, and that’s just what Chris did. Here’s his update:

I filed a complaint with the Florida State Attorney after writing your email yesterday…funny thing…I got a call from Verizon about my “complaint” that afternoon, then another call from a rep who “investigated” my account a couple hours later. Too bad he didn’t even have the right installation date. Obviously the response was not because of my emails, otherwise he would have had the correct installation date right in front of him. Supposedly things should be straightened out and rectified in 10-14 days per the 2nd rep who called yesterday afternoon! We shall see what happens!

Thanks!

Chris

Will Chris ever get his TV as Verizon has repeatedly promised? We hope so, but if this is happening to you, don’t wait — report Verizon to your state’s attorney general.

(Photo: Ben Popken )

Comments

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  1. reiyaku says:

    *melody plays* never gonna get it, never gonna get it, never gonna get it…

  2. reiyaku says:

    instead of LCD TV’s… how bout gas-cards with the same value as the TV?

  3. ConsumerAdvocacy1010 says:

    Had three CSR’s, one supervisor (via e-mail), and one VP (on the phone) promise me the TV. I have yet to see it.

  4. wallapuctus says:

    sucker!

    Actually I feel for this guy, I’d have fallen into this trap too if FIOS was available in my town. Now I know better!

  5. crabbyman6 says:

    Same thing here, after 5 weeks no letter. I called Verizon and they asked me over the phone what I wanted and explained that the installation date was completely wrong. I picked the gift card not knowing if/when I’d ever see the TV. That was 2 weeks ago, we’ll see if I get it or not.

  6. cmdrsass says:

    Look how much time you wasted chasing something “free”. An important thing to remember as a consumer is that the product or service you are buying should be a good value before you consider any additional promotions.

  7. Christopher says:

    You might want to redact the telephone number at the top of the live chat.

  8. hegemonyhog says:

    A good rule of thumb with something like this is that unless you get the free thing in hand at point of purchase, it’s not worth it and you’re unlikely to get it.

  9. Invisobel says:

    I got mine 3 weeks after the install, a few guys in the Tampa FL area around me as well. That was in January. I guess I just got really lucky but it seems like some markets had more available. Well, good luck.

  10. boss_lady says:

    @cmdrsass: Here, here! Words to live by.

  11. Just plain unacceptable. Verizon dropped the ball hardcore on this. I hope the customer gets the TV and much more.

  12. RudeandRude says:

    Weird, I had my Fios installed in October and had my TV delivered in early January. Everything went smooth.

  13. Ein2015 says:

    Wasn’t there a Verizon employee that was complaining about the company and how it works? I don’t remember the article (and I can’t seem to find it), but it was a really good read!

  14. I am in the same boat. I also just ordered my “free” Digital conversion boxes for my TV’s w/ no settop box. I ordered three (JIC I got another TV). They charged me for one of them, but I didn’t feel like arguing w/ the lady at the time b/c she was reading off a script and I was at work. This was Thursday afternoon. I come home Friday, and five boxes are on my doorstep. I install two of them, then call up to return the extra three. While waiting to connect me to FIOS tech, the rep asks me about if I want to upgrade my HD channels. I tell him, until I get my free TV, it’s useless b/c none of my TV’s are high def. This confused him, and he said I should have gotten already. I read him all the dates and times from my print outs, and he seemed confused even more, but I don’t think he was willing to work on this problem, and neither was I as I wanted to return the three boxes. Long story short, I couldn’t return them b/c I had received them too quickly, and have to wait until 5/29 to call in to return them. I love the Fios, but the people make me wonder.

  15. MrGrimes says:

    I’d rather get a root canal than try to get a problem resolved through Verizon Customer Service.

  16. BeastMD says:

    Yeah, had a similar issue with them charging me for 5 cent long distance even though I get free long distance with FIOS. Somehow a second plan was on my account for 5 cent long distance and they could no get it removed no matter who I talked to at their offices. Finally found an executive email over at dslreports.com and they were able to fix it after dozens of calls and about 5 months to the other reps.

    There is something seriously wrong with that company.

  17. castlecraver says:

    This is probably very much like your standard mail-in rebate scam. They figure a good proportion of people will not jump through all the hoops perfectly or simply forget about the promo. With all the foot-dragging, it sounds like they’re hoping you either forget about it or just decide it’s not worth your trouble. Unless you put up a big fuss, you’re unlikely to ever get your TV. cmdrsass: makes a good point in hindsight, but if you’re entitled to your promo item now, I say keep raising holy hell until its in your hands.

  18. AngryEwok says:

    Verizon is waiting for the LCD TV to be obsolete. [i]Then[/i] they’ll send it to you.

  19. Vroomtrap says:

    @cmdrsass: Yeah that’s totally true. The amount of hours wasted on getting this “Free TV” could have probably been spent in something else more productive where he could have earned a TV and had extra money. I do realize that this goes against the something for nothing culture we live in though.

  20. WarOtter - I went to Japan and all I got was this tumor. says:

    Grah… and somehow it is illegal to threaten people with a gun if they con you?

    There are a lot of CEO’s out their who should wake up to find the head of their favorite horse in their bed.

  21. What’s funny about this is that I want to get FiOS, and I don’t need a free TV inducement to get it. I’ll brave the bad customer service and the evil empire of Verizon for the better quality HD and faster internet connection. But I live in the largest city in America & keep getting told that I can’t get FiOS service.

  22. mradequate says:

    I recently tried to get FiOS, having had a well, comcastic experience with Comcast.

    Verizon was so bad, they lost my order, made me re-order, found my old order, and were going to charge me more anyway. I tried to cancel the order on a saturday, but since their specific local FiOS office wasn’t open, I was not allowed to. When I finally called someone on Monday, I had to speak to four people before they would complete the cancellation. Thats right. Its harder to not get FiOS than it is to get FiOS.

    Comcast sucks. But Verizon sucky suck sucks.

  23. aahpandasrun says:

    I got my free hdtv from verizon fios. 19inch 1080p lcd hdtv. It’s the magnavox version, and it’s a little small, but it’s perfect for a bedroom, for use as a computer monitor, or something.

  24. BrAff says:

    Thanks for choosing Verizon, as a token or our appreciation please choose from one of these 3 prizes:

    1.[redacted]
    2.[redacted]
    3.[redacted]

    Thanks for choosing! Your [redacted] will be sent out shortly! In the interim, please go to hell!

  25. lostalaska says:

    I’m surpised they didn’t try to pull the old, “I’m sorry, but you didn’t fill out the paperwork for the free TV in the proper time frame.” nevermind that he never got said paperwork.

  26. sgodun says:

    My wife and I signed up for FiOS right before the turn of the new year. We just got our Sharp 19″ LCD TV about 2-3 weeks ago. No hassles, no problems, other than the lengthy delay (which Verizon kept us informed of every step of the way).

  27. HOP says:

    no fios service here either….guess i’m just lucky…..i do have dsl with verizon, and have had no real problems…the times i had to call india for help were ok…..i guess i was lucky with the csr’s i was served by…….

  28. adamcz says:

    I would go to one of their call centers and steal some computers or something. Hold them hostage.

  29. RoderigoFox says:

    I ended up contacting Verizon for a fifth time asking for a way to get my
    best buy gift certificate and they instead offered me $204 off verizon
    monthly bill.

  30. kellyw says:

    This is ridiculous!!!!!! If only we could place a monetary value on the amount of time lost and stress caused by trying to get Verizon to honor what they promised. We could ban together and have a great class action law suit! Why not? This is America….

    Seriously though, we are all now locked into a contract, initiated by false advertising, with a company showing us we do not matter to them while they gladly take our monthy payments each month. Someone has to step in and let these companies know that this is unacceptable and will no longer be tolerated.

  31. too bad about the tv…

    I got fios bundled w/ my landline, no tv service [rots the brain you know ;)].
    The connection speed is great and I only got the middle level.

    maybe its cuz I live in MA, but I’ve had few problems w/ Verizon…

  32. jth_007.5 says:

    I got FIOS TV service 7 months ago and have had no LCD TV, instead they switched my contract without informing me and are now discounting my bill to the value of the TV.

    Changing contractual agreements without notification like this is illegal.

    This is clearly a market abuse case, needless to say I filed a complaint with BBB and the NJ Attorney General.

  33. jth_007.5 says:

    I got FIOS Triple play service 7 months ago and have had no LCD TV, instead they switched my contract without informing me and are now discounting my bill to the value of the TV.

    Changing contractual agreements without notification in these circumstances is illegal.

    This is a classic market abuse case, needless to say I filed a complaint with BBB and the NJ Attorney General.

  34. DeadlyDad says:

    This has worked for me and others over and over:

    1) Get a fax number for the appropriate department, preferably toll-free.
    2) Type up a letter detailing what the problem is and what you want them to do about it. Include contact information.
    3) Set your fax machine to hide your caller ID (to prevent them from blocking you) and fax it off.
    4) A reasonable time later, tape a sheet of paper behind your fax so that half extends down past it. On it, write something like “No contact; resending” and the date.
    5) GOTO 3

    Continue this until someone gets back to you…and I assure you that someone will, if only to know why you are sending an eleven foot fax. ;D (They can’t call it harassment, because you have a valid reason to keep trying to get a hold of them, and they don’t have one for stopping you.)