Another Customer Escapes Verizon Contract For Free

Reader Bret writes in to let us know that he was able to escape the chains of his Verizon contract with no ETF thanks to a txt message increase:

Okay so I read the script from last years price hike on messaging rates, to get out of your contract scot-free. I thought I read some where else that they were going up again to 0.20. So I called Verizon and ran the script on them. No one in cancellations had heard about it. I called the general customer service line. Of course the csr didn’t know anything and wanted me to pay the ETF’s. So I went to her supervisor. His name was Aundra (pronounced Andre), employee # 7817 out of the Birmingham office.

He had just received a memo about the price increase and had not read it or been educated yet. I fought him for about 15 minutes finally he said he would look into it and call be back, but he did not think the increase applied to current contracts. Yeah right I thought, he’ll never call back. Guess what I just got off the phone with him and out of my contract for free!!! HA!! I guess Verizon didn’t learn their lesson last year.

Oh Verizon, they’re dropping like flies. If you’d like to escape your Verizon contract with no ETF, give them a call and let them know you’re exorcising your right to terminate the contract without penalty thanks to a materially adverse change in the agreement.

That’ll show ’em.

PREVIOUSLY: Man Escapes Verizon Contract Based On Text Message Rate Raises
Cancel Verizon Without Termination Fee Based On New Text Message Rate Increases


Edit Your Comment

  1. mthrndr says:

    “exorcising your right”

    Rights Demons, I cast you OUT!!

  2. aviationwiz says:

    I had good luck canceling. I told the rep about the rate increase, and that I was interested in canceling for that reason. He then told me I’d have to pay an ETF, but then I told him about the clause in the contract that says I can cancel without an ETF when there are rate increases, and he did some research for a bit, and told me that everything was taken care of and it was canceled. My service was disconnected, but I really won’t know if everything was done right until I see a final bill from them.

  3. “”… heh heh, passes the spell check… but not the grammar check!!

  4. ^^^ exorcising

  5. Blueskylaw says:

    Dear Consumerist,

    Bad for big business, Ohh my dear.


  6. harumph says:

    i like how verizon contracts take on the quality of east germany during the cold war. tales of daring escapes, tunneling out of your contract in secret. someone should write a book.

  7. Brian Gee says:

    @pepe the king prawn: The grammar is even correct. Its just the wrong word.

    Then again, these incantations do get Verizon out of your phone. Maybe it is the right word.

  8. dgcaste says:

    Man, I have a txt messaging plan. Any way I can get out of MY contract??

  9. forever_knight says:

    how can you get out of a contract AND take your number with you??

  10. theirishscion says:

    @Brian Gee: I think technically that’s a failure in the semantics check.

  11. Buran says:

    But do they cancel the right contract, or do they have your info switched with someone else’s and cancel that one instead?

  12. Sundari says:

    I just tried to switch out of Verizon this past weekend for this same reason (text messaging rate hike). I spent half an hour speaking to a representative, Phil, that was not aware of the rate change or of the notice sent to customers allowing them to opt out of their contract due to this materially adverse change.

    I then spent another half an hour on the phone with a supervisor who essentially stated that they “don’t care” about the impact this change had on my account. True quote. I’ve now received a bill of $196.00 for switching my account from Verizon to AT&T/Cingular.

    Maybe I should have opted for an exorcism….

  13. levenhopper says:

    @forever_knight: That is what I’ve always wondered.

  14. ethanrik says:

    The problem is where do you go? So far I have had several major mobile company’s and they all have had problems.

  15. theblackdog says:

    If I were to use this to get out of Verizon, would I be able to port my number over to AT&T?

  16. mdot says:

    I canceled my contract with Verizon using this method about three weeks ago. My story was similar to the original post. I originally talked to a CSR she attempted to give me the company line of “does ot affect you”. I probed a little deeper, she said she would call me back. I, of course, doubted I would hear back from anyone. But, lo and behold, got a call from a CS manager who let me out even though he thought there was no affect.

    I think that this whole thing is just a trickle to Verizon right ow and they would rather “loose” the trickle than this thing blow up even further because of them refusing.

    I’ve always had a love/hate relationship with Verizon. They have the best coverage and the fastest data speeds, but their business practices stink.

  17. chicagojohn says:

    got out of my Sprint contract today without an ETF because they renamed the fees on my account and my bill went up by $3 a month. They sent a postcard a month ago and said the fees may go up or down… mine went up. I cancelled, and when they tried to apply the ETF, I explained the fee change, he talked to his supervisor, and then he came back and said they wouldn’t charge an ETF.

  18. Atomike says:

    “The problem is where do you go?”
    Frankly, you’d all be happier without cell phones. People think they make life better, but really, the only reason you need one is for emergencies. Get a pay-as-you-go phone, and live a better, happier life.
    Don’t tie yourself to a THING and then complain that it makes you unhappy. You do it to yourself. Simplify. You CAN do it.

  19. wewanttheearth says:

    My girlfriend escaped Verizon and ported to ATT without an ETF after about 45 minutes of being on the phone with them for a change in the FUSC fee a few months ago. Initially we tried to get out for a change in the international calling rates but were told we’d have to provide proof that her new job requires international travel. ha!

    It was a struggle and she had to escalate to a Supervisor. “My supervisor isn’t here today” said the CSR at one point. It’s silly how much you have to push these people sometimes. I kept jumping around the room comically doing boxing jabs and uppercuts whilst my girlfriend debated with these jokers just to keep the mood positive.

    Eventually we got her to push up to a manager/supervisor type and after some of her attempts to tell us this isn’t going to have a materially adverse effect, after she tried to negotiate a smaller ETF she finally caved and had her read something on the back of her bill about an FUSC charge that was increasing.

    She put some type of note on the account and gave us her direct number. My girlfriend wanted to port to AT&T and was told she’d have to port first and then call back to have the fee reversed.

    So we go to ATT, give them the Verizon account number and phone number and whammo new service with ATT. The ETF fee shows up & several days later she calls to have the fee reversed and the CSR’s give her the run around about what the note on the account says!! 20 more minutes dealing with these clowns! We eventually call the supervisor’s direct number, left messages. The 2nd CSR said we couldn’t port if we cancelled early and didn’t pay the ETF. Too bad for her we already did. Called the CSR’s back and the third person finally followed the notes on the account and eliminated the fee.

    Based on this customer service experience alone I plan to cancel my verizon service soon as well.

  20. reykjavik says:

    I too got out of VZW through the txt rate increase!!

    The guy argued with me for about half an hour and he tried to tell me that it didn’t materially adversely effect me because I hadn’t had any txt messages. I said the language in the contract doesn’t state “had” it states “have” which implies present and future – but does not imply past. He put me on hold, got back to me ten minutes later saying it was canceled with no EFT charge. I got my bill and I wasn’t charged.

    (oh, he also tried telling me that I’d have to show that I upgraded my text message plans and that this would somehow show that I was being adversely effected by the rate increase. I said, “ok, so sign me up for the next plan and then cancel my contract.” He says I couldn’t do that because I was just doing it to cancel and that was “unethical.” I said VZW made 6 BILLION in profit last year and THAT was unethical. He had no response to that.)

  21. sicknick says:


    I did it. I went to AT&T first, got my new phone, ported the number, called Verizon when I got home who told me I had to wait for the port to go through. Called back 2 hours later and it was all thumbs up and good job.

    No ETF. No argument with the rep on the phone. I pretty much took a crap on the doorstep and didn’t have to wipe it went so smoothly.

    I’m actually going to be getting a 4 dollar credit check in the mail from Verizon AND I got a great phone for almost nothing. The At&T store got me a BB Curve for 25 bucks out the door to pay for the impending ETF from Verizion. I flipped that on ebay for around 300 bucks, then used the 300 plus some money from another ebay sale to pick up an HTC 8525 for nothing out of pocket. Sure, it’s not a Tilt, but whoohoo!

  22. xthechaostheoryx says:

    No dice for me. I called two days ago and tried to cancel due to the rate increase and after speaking with the first CS person I asked to be transfered to a manager, who told me the same thing (I had a text package so it didnt apply to me). I asked for his manager and was told he would call me back in about 24-48 hours, and he called back in about 45 minutes! He said the best he could do was offer me 50$ off my ETF as a good customer, but since I had a plan he couldnt waive the ETF. I called and canceled my text afterward and will try and call again tonight to see if it worked….i hope so!

  23. Oliver Aaltonen says:

    Just wanted to say thanks for the heads up on the Verizon txt increase. Simply by citing the txt increase in my last statement and reading the “material adverse” line from the contract, the first-level Verizon CSR I spoke with today cancelled my contract with no ETF… no questions asked. The entire call lasted under one minute. They must be getting used to this!

  24. tylermorgan says:

    We have a family plan – is it possible to cancel just one of our multiple lines through the ‘materially adverse’ contract provision? I don’t want to get rid of the other two just yet.