What a nightmare. On or about 9/13/2017 I had the unfortunate pleasure of inviting a AT&T , DirecTV solicitor into my home at a senior mobile home park I live in in Southern California.
Bear with me a few while I explain how it happened. Normally, a few years ago this would have never happened. I guess the older I get I let my guard down a little easier. I was on the porch and my wife came from the front with someone behind her and said someone wants to talk to you.
I had a “deal” with Dish TV that was coming to a end. I’d been thinking about “pulling the plug” altogether, not much on TV that is worth watching anymore except a couple of shows and News channels I like. I had about the bear minimum as far as subscriptions go, almost $50 a month but it was down to $35 because I had tried to cancel 10 months ago and Dish offered to cut it down. Getting $1,300 and change a month from a medical retirement I don’t have a lot of extra cash to through around.
So the guy behind her comes up and introduces himself to me. He has one of the vest you see highway workers wearing with the reflective things on them a nice professional looking name tag with his picture on it identifying him as a DirecTV and Dish salesman.
You know how it starts, he asked what subscriber I use for TV. I told him Dish, he tells me he can give me DirecTV for $49.99 for two years guaranteed with HOB and all the other movie channels free for one year. So I invite him in, lets talk.
He shows me a pretty good package for the price, the “Entertainment Package”. Looks good with channels I like and some other good ones. He seemed like a really nice guy. We kept talking for a while, kept telling me he can’t lie, he’s a Christian, had a good sized cross around his neck and other similar jewelry. This normally (in years past) would have been a red flag to me. Usually when someone is pushing their Christianity to get you to trust them it’s been my experience it’s a red flag.
So anyways I agree, initial a few things and sign his paper work, he tells me they charge a month ahead of time so I give him a debt card number. Pretty simple little piece of paperwork, not much to it. Tells me I’m initialing he explained everything to me, I agree to the $ 49 for two years and OK to install, you know the drill. I was worried about loosing all the programs I had recorded on the Dish DVR and he said he’s be back on Friday after install and would help me transfer it to my computer. I said so I guess I’ll call Dish and cancel now and he said wait 7 day’s to make sure everything works, (should have been another red flag).
Next day a very nice guy comes to install everything, again very nice guy my wife even tipped him $5 afterwards so he could go get a soda ore something. After he does the install and explains the remote and DVR to us he asked to see the paper work the other guy left. I give to him and he starts doing his paperwork like they normally do. I went back to working on my computer and my wife walked him out.
The next day I ask my wife where the paperwork was and she tells me the installer took it with him. I think that’s weird. Next day is Friday when the other guy is supposed to come back and help me transfer my saved shows on the Dish DVR to my computer, he doesn’t show up. So next day Saturday the 16th I look up DirecTV’s number on the web and give them a call. I tell the rep. Ron, they took my paperwork I have no account number or anything. The nightmare begins.
Ron tells me my account number and that it’s $65.23 with tax and everything for first year with a $30 discount credited to the account and after that it would jump to $90 something a month. Said I have to call back a couple months before the package was going to expire to cancel the movie package or they would start charging for it. I tell Ron that’s not what I was told or promised. He tell’s me call back before the year is up, around August and they’d work out another deal. I’m ticked, wondering what I’m going to do. There’s no way I can afford that so I tell him good by.
On the 18th I get a email from Dish saying “They want be back” and offer $49.99 two year guarantee a good package and HOB free for six months.
So I call and get it done. Jay tells me they wave some fee’s can’t remember which ones, think it was install and others, short hand writing says $64.99, $66.99. I get my first bill in the email and it’s $41.37 with it going up to $67.02. Didn’t tell me I wold have to pay $10 for local channels and then of course there’s the equipment rental and they only gave me HBO for three months, Jay say’s call back in 3 months and they’ll ad another 3 months, yea, OK./s
What a racket these companies got going hu? After dealing with DirecTV I’m not even going to get into with Dish.
Back to the DirecTV nightmare. So I call DirecTV back around the 19th, actually I contacted AT&T. I spoke with a Danielle, told her the solicitor that came to my house lied about everything the program and pricing, didn’t tell my I was signing up for auto pay either, I want to cancel and want to talk to a supervisor. She put me hold and I was transfered to a mobile phone service department, then transfered me back to AT&T/DirectTV held for about 25 minutes. I hung up and called back, held for another 10 minutes and hung up and called DirectTV this time. This time put me on hold and then sent me to some promotional thing offering me $100 for some rebate with no options to do anything then it automatically hung up on me. I called back again and talked to a Tony this time and asked to talk to a supervisor, he informed me he could to anything a supervisor could do he was a “Level 2 supervisor.
I tell Tony I want to cancel and explained everything again and he put me on hold, came back and said OK, everything canceled, disconnect fee’s waived and they would sent me boxes to pack everything up. I ask do I get a confirmation or reference number? He tells me no his ID is good enough, ID# AQ4998. I asked about my $49 charged to my debit card he told me I was wrong, he didn’t see anything charged to my card and rudely told me to dispute it with my bank and I said thank’s and hung up.
Thinking everything is OK I get via regular mail a bill for $65.23, I call back and talk to a Chris, (the nicest one of the bunch) I explain everything to Chris and tell her I wand to cancel and get my money back everything the solicitor told me was a lie. She tells me they have no record of them receiving money from me. I tell her they took my debit card number and there’s a charge on my bank account from it. She put’s me on hold, comes back and say’s the subcontractor charged it not DirecTV, a “Mobile Media” company she will have to file something,(can’t remember what she called it) they will call me back in 7-10 days after contacting “Mobil Media” for my refund and there will be no more charges and everything is done. Haven’t heard anything yet as of this writing.
Then I get a bill via regular mail for $475.24 for “Early Cancellation”. I’v had enough now and call back. It’s now the 28th of September. BTW did I mention the majority of these people were very hard to understand except when talking to a supervisor. I thing I was calling India or somewhere. I get a Donna if I understood her right, I explain again a tell her I’m not paying a thing and want my money back, she threatens me with collections. I tell her let me talk to a supervisor, transfers me to a Lucas who can’t do anything for me we argue about the $49 return of my money and the $65.23 charged to my bank account which are two different things he can’t seem to understand. I ask to be transfered again. Up next a John, he tells me I have a visa cash card coming in the mail for the $49 but he can’t revers the $65.23 charged to my bank. I tell him transfer me to someone who can, put on hold again I don’t know how many times on hold throughout this nightmare. I finally get transfered to a “Billing Specialist” a Wade ID# 501118 who assures me everything is now taken care of and the $65.23 will be reversed back to my bank before the 13th of October. This was my last contact with them and I have as yet see anything from them.
After posting this I’m going to file a complaint with B.B.B, the F.C.C and see if I can file one withe California State Attorney General. This is nut’s! Anyone old enough reading this remember when AOL was about the only came in town and trying to cancel that? AT&T/DirecTV put them to shame.
Anyone else have any problem like this? I can’t be the only one. I’ll post again with anything new.