Consumerist reader Beth is a telecommuter who needs something more than the standard residential internet connection. So she decided to spring for the business-grade line for the apartment she shares with her boyfriend. However, since their TV has nothing to do with her business, they opted to keep the cable service on their residential account. I probably don’t need to tell you that trouble ensued.
“It was hell trying to pay the bill every month,” she writes. “The company continuously would lose our account information and would issue new information every month. It routinely took over an hour to pay the bill every month. This was, sadly, due to the fact that we had both a residential and business account. It was extremely confusing to the automated phone system and the live reps. The website was no help, either. Information they’d given us the previous month to log in would no longer work, repeatedly.”
To remedy the situation, they decided to transfer the TV service over to her business account.
Here’s how Beth tells it:
We were assured that we wouldn’t really notice a thing. The day it was supposed to happen, the television service stopped working entirely. My boyfriend called Verizon, and no one could give him an answer. They told him to call back on Monday in order to resolve the issue.
And when he called, things became strange. The rep explained to him that he had to put down a $500 deposit on the account in order to get the television service turned on on the business line.
This was not something that the rep who originally set this up had ever mentioned. It was also odd because no other accounts of his required deposits (not when they were set up, and not in order to continue). His credit is excellent and he has yet to be late on a bill (even with the hour-long payment process each month).
Finding this deposit ridiculous, he asked them to just switch our television service back to the residential department. The rep told him that this would also require a $500 deposit. In short, no television would be coming to the house in any capacity unless he forked over $500 as a deposit.
So now Beth and her boyfriend are stuck, without TV service, being told they have to put down the hefty deposit before anything can happen. At least they have the internet so they can stream videos.
Has this happened to anyone else?
Some readers have had luck e-mailing the company’s CEO Ivan Seidenberg (firstname.lastname@example.org), or contacting executive customer service at 212-321-8463. Also, some have reported mixed results with Verizon’s Twitter.