Taylor just noticed that T-Mobile has been billing him $19.99 for a data package he asked them to cancel seven months ago. Yes, Taylor should’ve caught the mistake sooner, but now that he’s found it, he wants T-Mobile to refund the $140 in unauthorized charges. T-Mobile, citing policy, is only willing to credit him $60.
I’ve just gotten off the phone with T-Mobile—actually, they hung up on me, immediately after I told them I wanted to cancel my service and would be sending a report to The Consumerist. I had a Blackberry Pearl that broke on me, back in August. I replaced it with a non-data phone, and used t-mobile.com to cancel my Blackberry data add-on in August of 2008. Flash forward to earlier this afternoon, when I received notice that my bill was past due, and for an amount significantly higher than what I thought it should be. I opened up ‘My Services” on the their website, and found that I’ve been charged $19.99 a month for the Blackberry add-on since August, with no interruption, despite my canceling the service and not even owning a Blackberry. T-mobile admitted their error and offered to credit back the last 60 days of Blackberry service, but refused to credit back the remaining five months they’ve charged me for services not rendered. As mentioned at the begining of this email, I was hung up on immediately after mentioning the consumerist.
The call went like this:
Tmobile: “Sorry, that’s all we can offer you, the last 60 days.”
Taylor: “So, roughly $40?”
Tmobile: “It would be… let’s see, it comes out to $39.98″
Taylor: “And you owe me, doing the math in my head, $140?”
Tmobile: “We can only credit back the last 60 days, I’m sorry.”
Taylor: “That’s unacceptable.”
Tmobile: “Sorry, that’s all we can do.”
Taylor: “Okay, please cancel my service immediately”
Tmobile: “Are you sure?”
Taylor: “Yes, please cancel my service.”
Tmobile: “You’re out of contract, there’s no termination fee. You can get a new phone if you extend—”
Taylor: “Please cancel my service.”
Tmobile: “We can credit you that $40.”
Taylor: “When you owe me $140? That’s unacceptable, please cancel my service, and I will be writing The Consumerist about this.”
I’m on my way to the nearest Verizon store.
Verizon’s policies aren’t any more consumer-friendly than T-Mobile’s—telecoms are all largely the same—but the incident should serve as a reminder to keep a close eye on your bills, and to immediately dispute problems as they arise.