Verizon Fixes Billing Quagmire, Overnights Refund Check After Consumerist Post

On Wednesday, we shared Mike’s Verizon billing horror story. Instead of putting all of his Verizon and Verizon Wireless services on one bill as they were supposed to, the company pummeled Mike with a half-dozen different bills that added up to $1,100 for about a month and a half of service. He spent hours on the phone trying to fix this mess before writing to Consumerist. Then a higher power interceded: Verizon’s Executive Support and Media Relations departments, who we had passed Mike’s story on to in addition to publishing it.

Mike writes:

Thank you SO MUCH! Verizon Executive Support/Media Relations got back to me yesterday and they’re waiving all fees from the Verizon Wireless side and finally sending me my refund from Verizon Communications by overnight delivery.

Needless to say, after the nearly 20 hours I’ve spent on the phone with them I’m in awe that you folks were able to get this taken care of for me in such a short period of time.

That’s amazing! Thanks to the higher powers at Verizon who were able to make this happen for Mike in his time of need.


Edit Your Comment

  1. aikoto says:

    Verizon provides good customer service!…. After being publicly shamed on a high-profile site.

    I’m not impressed, but happier that they at least handled it eventually.

  2. SPOON - now with Forkin attitude says:

    Ah behold the power of the negative press!

  3. Verucalise (Est.February2008) says:

    I hope this opens Verizon’s eyes. These billing problems with their one bill system have been around for years, and I’ve been one of the screwed. Only an EECB got any results, and even THEN it still took a month, a lot of apologies, and credits before the problem was finally resolved.

    Doesn’t Verizon test their billing BEFORE offering it? I’ve had many problems with their systems consistently. They were even charging us minutes to talk to eachother… when we shared the same wireless plan. You would think that these problems would be wrenched out within a few weeks, not months.

    Overall, I’m not unhappy with their service, but their billing and customer service leaves much to be desired.

    • milrtime83 says:

      “I hope this opens Verizon’s eyes.”

      I doubt it will. As with the $1.99 data charges, billing “problems” generally just make them more money. For every person who’s story gets online somewhere that they “help” out, there are probably plenty more who just let it slide by and pay so they don’t have to deal with the hassle.

      • Verucalise (Est.February2008) says:

        I know… just wishful thinking. If they could iron out this billing nightmare they have, they wouldn’t be such a bad company.

    • oldwiz65 says:

      The Verizon billing system is a hideous nightmare. It was built up over many years as things were added and different data bases tried to combine. You often need executive help to straighten things out. For example, just try to get an incorrect spelling on your name corrected; no way it can happen. I had to deal with it when I switched to FIOS, and it kept messing things up. You start out with a bundle, which is fine, but if you see a new feature and you call them and add it, you lose the bundle and get charged much higher rates until you can talk the higher ups at customer service into helping you. I’d love to add some stuff on my Verizon account, but I am definitely not willing to have another round with arguing about billing.

      • MaxH42 thinks RecordStoreToughGuy got a raw deal says:

        This. A thousand times this. I’ve got a discounted bundle for internet and FIOS TV, and they charge my credit card every month. Every time I ask about switching to ACH payments, they say I’d lose my bundle if I changed my billing method. WTF??

        I suppose I should start drafting the EECB for when they start charging me that $3.50 “fee” for CC payments (and I’ve never received a notice about those, either), suggest I switch to ACH bank payments to avoid them, and the recursive blame loop starts.

        • Verucalise (Est.February2008) says:

          That’s abominable. Saying they’ll charge you $3.50 for CC payments, but if you go ACH route, you’ll lose your bundle. I hope you write something to them…. that’s abysmal.

          • MaxH42 thinks RecordStoreToughGuy got a raw deal says:

            Thanks, but it wasn’t on my Sept. bill, and knowing their billing “system”, they’ll probably forget about it for a year, then try to charge me $42 a year from now for “unpaid fees”. Still, I’m hoping that for once their crappy billing will work in my favor, and the $3.50 won’t ever be applied to my account. I’d rather just not disturb the slumbering beast.

  4. milrtime83 says:

    Moral of the story: Don’t waste 20 hours of your time trying to deal with their billing problems, get it on the internet and shame them into helping you. I guess I give them some credit for being truthful with what this department is really for by having “media relations” in it’s title and not just pretending it is another support department.

  5. Zydia says:

    I happen to be in the market for internet service, so although I’m happy for him, I’ll still pass on Verizon since the moral of the story is that one needs press or executive connections for good cs.

    • pecan 3.14159265 says:

      Verizon’s network is great, but there is a snowball’s chance in hell that I’ll go back to Verizon. When I was with Verizon, I had to make a minimum of three phone calls every time I had a problem. The first call to explain the problem, the second call to confirm that the reps had made the appropriate changes (9 times out of 10, they had not) and the third call to confirm once and for all that the changes had been made. There’s no reason why anyone needs to call the same company three times just to get one mistake corrected.

  6. The_Fuzz_53 says:

    Verizon’s billing system is an absolute abomination and should be considered a crime against humanity. The FCC should pull all of their licenses until a competent system is put into place.

  7. Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

    As long as this made Verizon execs aware of this issue and took steps to prevent it from happening again, then I am happy.

    That is all we as consumers ever want, man. Just correct your mistake and learn from it.

    • The_Fuzz_53 says:

      Did anybody foreward this to Ivan? He probably wouldn’t care anyway.

    • MaxH42 thinks RecordStoreToughGuy got a raw deal says:

      Your last sentence actually has two components there, and they’ve only met the first one so far. I agree with your goals, but so far Verizon has never gotten the second part right.

    • tiatrack says:

      This has happened to a half dozen people that I know (including me), so I’m sure there are thousands of people that have been caught in Verizon cs hell. They aren’t learning anything and don’t give a damn about their customers or they would have fixed this issue that has been going on for YEARS.

  8. ALP5050 says:

    Giggity goo!!

  9. Franks Wife says:

    I m hoping you can help me in some way too. My husband died on November 20th, 2010. I alerted Verizon and let them know I would need to change the contract. At that time I was still interested in having Verizon Service in our home. Since then I have been erroneously billed in my husbands name for thousands of dollars and for his cell phone, which I am sure he is not using… I have been told I need his password, which I do not know and that I need to have a power of attorney from him. My husband did not know he was going to die. He did not use his last words to tell me his verizon password or sign a power of attorney so I could talk to the verizon people. I have been told they can talk to our child, since her name is on one of the phones, but not to me. Since my husband had the contract in his name. I have successfully navigated the funeral parlor, the obituary writing, the special memorial service given in honor of my husband by the US defense department and the ensuing months without him at Christmas and our children’s birthdays, What I cannot seem to accomplish is to get Verizon to look at the 1,034.30 cents bill they have sent again and discuss it with me. Since I am not on the account and I do not have a power of attorney. I do have a death certificate and since there is no estate, I am left to guess that Verizon does not want me for a customer and I will have to just take these fios boxes out of the house and ignore all further bills addressed to my deceased husband. I have spent at least 9 hours on the phone, no joke… with friends and family members watching and commenting as I try to get someone, anyone from this company to research the bill and tell me if they have received the payments I have made. Recently a customer rep called Heidi told me she would speak to our daughter about the account. I got my daughter up out of bed and she was asked by Heidi for the Pasword. Seriously? My daughter who is greiving for her Dad should know the password? I heard my daughter say to this Heidi Customer Rep, “Excuse me Ma’am, do you tell your children your passwords?” I am saddened that our country has been reduced to the situation where customer service is non existent in our telephone service. I am losing sleep since I have paid them 1, 455.00 and not recieved any information about why the bill is so much. I cannot continue to randomly pay 1,000 a month for what ??? I am not sure, the last phone call I had they told me My husband does not owe any thing to Verizon Wireless but he owes 1, 034.39 to Verizon. Since I am not on the account what should I do next?

  10. gcs says:

    I went for the promotion of unlimited home phone and internet at 54.95 in september of 2010. Verizon messed up the billing right from the start by adding stuff I never asked for. After calling 4 or 5 times and being assured they would fix it, bill is still 20 dollars high. They refuse to honor the original contract and say they cant fix it. Now what can I do?

  11. Lynluvsjazz says:

    I first contacted Verizon (I have high speed internet), to inform them that I made a mistake and send $48,81 to Verizon on May 3rd instead of paying the correct bill. they told me I had to wait until the $29.99 cleared before I could get a check. I waited that time, then they told me I had to wait for the billing period to generate. I did that. next they told me to send a fax on May 10, I did that. they had me wait again. I think you get the idea. I have spoken to at least 25 representatives and 5 supervisors with no results. the last supervisor I spoke to assured me that on May 18 my check for $98.81 would be sent overnight and I would receive it the 19th. when I called the 19 they told me to call back on Friday. Needless to say, that supervisor lied and I still have not received my money. I called again, and the rep told me she sees where I requested a check was denied, I asked why and did not get an answer. After three weeks back and forth on the phone for hours, faxing and waiting, I still don’t have my money. And the only reason I found out abut the $50 credit was when I called abut the 48.81. I asked them to send me the 50, they said oh we can’t do that we rolled the two credits together. the latest now is I have to wait until I get the next bill, they will take our 29.99 (which I did not give them permission to do), and only then I can get the remainder of my money. This is crazy and I am on fire over this. I have contacted channel 12 tv in RI and wrote to Susan Hogan. I am now writing to you. And when 9am comes around I will be calling the vice president of Verizon. I can’t believe the way I have been treated, tossed around like a football, sent to wrong departments, spoken to at least 25 representatives and at least 6 supervisors. They all have different stories, one rep even told me my check was sent. It was not. I am outraged. Can you help me? I need my money, they have no reason to or do not have my permission to keep it. Thank you Linda