Verizon wont give me what I orderd or let me quit.
October 12, 2009 4:03 PM   Subscribe

How can I make Verizon Wireless treat me better? They changed my plan without my consent.

I have actually been pretty happy Verizon Wireless until very recently.

I have one regular cell phone line with Verizon, and one of those nice little usb broadband modems. I have had both since about 2005.
The great thing was that I had the unlimited broadband plan on my modem. They do not offer it anymore so I was proud of being able to keep my unlimited broadband plan.
Earlier this year, my wife and I got divorced. Among the thousands of matters to attend to, was to split our Verizon account into his and hers.
I called up Verizon and explained that I needed to remove her from the account and have the account only in my name.

The rep said this was no problem, and it was quick to do. I asked him specifically to ensure there was no changes to account, and if the broadband account would
remain the same. He ensured me that this would be the case, and even commented on how cool it was that I had the Unlimited plan.
He told me I needed to make sure I kept it. Wise words.

I kept getting bills in the expected amount so I did not verify further at that point. This month I did read my bill, and I notice that my broadband plan has changed from Unlimited as expected to their new 5GB plan.
This was clearly an error so I call up VZW to have them correct the error. I spoke at that time to rep number. 322590.
She assured me that she would put in a request to have my account updated back to the grandfathered plan and I would get a call back the next day.

3 days passed and I received no notification so I called VZW back. This time I spoke to rep 319729, who was a supervisor she said.
She looked at my account, and said that VZW had refused to put the unlimited plan back on my account, and there was nothing they could do.
I requested that because they had failed to provide me with what I was contractually entitled to, that they should release me from the termination
charges on the account and allow me to close the account.

Rep 319729 said that it was impossible for VZW to give me the plan and I wanted, and it was impossible for Verizon to release me from my early termination. Now they are charging me $59.99 per/month for a service I did not sign up for, and do not want.

Rep 319729 said that there was a website that listed the terms and conditions that apply when VZW makes a change to the account, and it was my duty to read this mythical piece to understand what they were allowed to do, when they make changes to the account. Rep 319729 did not say what the Url for this document was.

What can I do? They took advantage of me, in a very trying time in my life, and they refuse to fix it, and they even rub my face in it, with this mythical website I am supposed
to have read before calling to change my account.

I know I never agreed to the change, and that I never signed any documents about the change? How can they do this?
posted by digividal to Work & Money (11 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Oh, I also wrote BBB about it. I am crossing my fingers that they might do something in time.
posted by digividal at 4:03 PM on October 12, 2009

If you aren't being treated fairly, send their top executives an email. Most big companies have an executive support team. Call their executive offices (usually their headquarters) and ask to speak to their CEO. You'll almost certainly be escalated to the office that can actually make happen what normal front-line employees can't.

Calmly and succinctly explain your problem. Tell them what resolution you expect. Tell them you really do want to stay with Verizon, but the treatment you've received thus far has you questioning your relationship.

Here's the direct number to Verizon Wireless Executive support. Good luck. 908-306-6750
posted by inturnaround at 4:24 PM on October 12, 2009 [4 favorites]

N.B. This works with any big company, too, not just Verizon. I got Microsoft to fix my 360 for free out of warranty even though their front line employees said no because I emailed Steve Ballmer. The email was routed to their executive line and a nice man resolved the issue for me. So, it's a nice thing to know exists when you get super frustrated.
posted by inturnaround at 4:27 PM on October 12, 2009

Try the Consumerist who will likely suggest what inturnaround said, although they often refer to EECBs or "executive e-mail carpet bombs." That's a last resort, not a first.
posted by IndigoRain at 4:32 PM on October 12, 2009 [2 favorites]

Confirming what IndigoRain said about the Consumerist. We just went around and around with Comcast over moving a business internet account from our old office to a new address. It was taking forever to complete this simple task with no promised call ever coming from the techs to set it up.

One email to the sales rep just mentioning the email address and name of the Comcast customer service executive (which we got from the Consumerist website) and the appointment was set up for the next day. The EECB would have been the next step.
posted by 543DoublePlay at 4:52 PM on October 12, 2009

If they change your plan without your consent, then they have violated the contract they have with you, and you are not legally bound by it any more.

But IANYL...
posted by musofire at 6:10 PM on October 12, 2009

They key word you need to keep in mind when you call, if you want to cancel your account without a fee, is "material adverse affect." That is the wording they have in their contract. It says that if there is a change to any portion of your contract that has a "material adverse affect" on you, you can drop them like a ton of bricks without any fees. The other key is that "material adverse affect" is not clearly defined, and so you can define it within your own situation. For me, I was able to get out of a contract without any fees because they raised text messaging rates 5 cents. The change to your broadband account seems a bit more "adverse" than that.
posted by joshrholloway at 7:05 PM on October 12, 2009

Or effect.

I'm tired. Whatever.
posted by joshrholloway at 7:05 PM on October 12, 2009

The other side of the materially adverse coin is that you suffered no adverse effect. You still pay $60 a month and use the broadband the same way you always had.

Not that it makes it OK for them to mess with you, just that you may not be able to use that to your advantage.
posted by gjc at 7:20 AM on October 13, 2009 suffered no adverse effect. You still pay $60 a month and use the broadband the same way you always had...

Not if he used to use more than 5GB a month.
posted by joshrholloway at 8:24 AM on October 13, 2009

Story got posted over at consumerist:

Here's hoping your situation gets resolved quickly; that site gets a lot of eyes every day.
posted by reptile at 12:05 PM on October 14, 2009

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