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Direct TV Promises. Email confirms. Deceives. End result: Customer out hundreds of dollars irvine, California
28th of Sep, 2011 by User508280
August, 2010 Became a Direct TV customer. February 2011 Contacted Direct TV to suspend services for 3 months due to
a move. September 14, 2011 I contacted Direct TV to discuss a bill I received for $511. They informed me that I owed them $178 for the 3 months of billing that had been unpaid. In addition, there was a charge of $320 for early cancellation and $15 for a disconnection fee. (NO WHERE did it say on that bill that my bank card would be charged for this amount) I informed the representative that I did not want to cancel, in fact, wanted to schedule the services to be reconnected at the home I was now living in and was planning on October 1, 2011 when the Dish Network contract had expired where I was currently living. The representative informed me that was not a problem and as soon as I set up the reinstall date and paid the $178, the $320 and $15 would be taken off my bill. NOTHING was said about the potential of my checking account being charged for the total. September 19, 2011 In reviewing my checking account this morning, I find a deduction for $511 from Direct TV. (My checking account balance was $538 before this deduction) I immediately contact them, explaining the conversation I had with the representative only a few days ago. This representative looked at the notes on my account and said, “you’re absolutely correct, that charge never should have been made”. He proceeded to check with 2 separate supervisors, who in the end, agreed that my checking account should be credited for the total of $320 and $15. They would keep the $178 as that was owed for the 3 months. I was very nervous about the length of time it would take to receive the credit as I had checks outstanding on my account that had not been cashed. He informed me that he understood the urgency and did an “expedited credit” which should not take more than 48 hours. I received emails confirming their intention to credit my account. Before we hung up, he asked if I wanted to speak with the “movers department” to set up the reinstallation of services. I was under the assumption that “the move” was a free service as this is what they advertise all over their marketing materials and commercials. I agreed to be transferred to the Movers Department. Since my balance was paid, I should start using the service. In speaking with the Movers Department, the representative there told me that there would be a $149 installation fee and a $10 reconnection fee. He asked for a credit card or check by phone payment before he could schedule the install. I told him the situation with the charges and that my account did not presently have enough money in it to do that today and once rectified, I would call back and set up the installation. I simply could not afford $160 today for a cable install and my budget could handle it in a week or two. He said, “that’s not a problem. I can add the install fee to your next statement”. I verified with him 3 times that it would in fact be added to my statement for next month because I could not afford to pay this right now. “Yes, yes, yes, you’re all set” was his response. I set up the installation for Thursday, September 22, 2011. September 21, 2011 I contacted Direct TV to find out the status of the $335 credit as I already had 2 outstanding checks paid by my bank, with a $26 overdraft fee for each. The representative confirmed the notes, confirmed that the credit had been issued and informed me that Direct TV doesn’t guarantee credits within 48 hours, “we generally tell people 3-5 business days”.
Irritated and stressed but not having any choice but to wait, I thanked him and asked about Direct TV’s policy to reimburse overdraft fees due to their mistake in debiting my checking account. He said, “yes, our financial division with review and decide on reimbursing those fees. I will email you the form. Just print that out and attach copies of your checking account statement showing the charges and fax it back to us”. I received an email with the correct form. I printed the form. I kept it blank until my $335 credit was issued as I was nervous there would be more overdraft fees before this credit came through. September 22, 2011 The technician arrived to install the service. I realized that I did not have a DVR box in the 3 units I had at my previous residence. The technician explained that it was a $199 charge for the HD DVR, and $99 for the basic DVR box. I said, “can they add that to my billing statement?” He said, “no, that would have to be paid right now”. The technician put the Direct
TV rep on speaker and we went over how to pay for the upgraded box. She said, “I need a credit or debit card to complete the installation”. I, again, informed her of the situation with my pending credit and that I couldn’t use my debit card until the Direct TV credit came through. She said, “that’s okay. I can do a check by phone”. I hung up, thought about it and concluded that it had been 4 days since Direct TV informed me of the credit being posted, the next morning, September 23rd, according to Direct TV is the latest that credit would be posted so I authorized the check by phone for $99. I have 2 roommatesand we were going to split the $99 fee so my budget could handle that charge. Install was completed. September 23, 2011 In reviewing my checking account this morning, I see a credit from Direct TV for $81.56. I immediately contact them as I’m sick to my stomach over this. I’ve waited 5 days for a $335 credit. I’m now up to 4 overdraft fees for checks paid by my bank, my account is now showing a balance of $-445.35 and my credit is $81.56, not $335! I speak to yet another
representative who informs me that due to the $151.00 installation fee and the $99 fee for the DVR box, that left me with a credit of $81.56. I informed them of my discussion with the Movers Department and that I was reassured 3 times that charge would be added to my statement and that the $99 DVR box fee was a check by phone. “Why would they deduct those charges from my credit? I’ve been waiting for that cash to go back into my account! I’m on a very strict budget!
I have emails confirming that credit was coming back to my checking account!” He kindly apologized for the inconvenience and informed me that “if you have a credit pending and incur additional charges, they will deduct those charges from any pending credit”. NO WHERE in any correspondence, whether by email, or phone conversations, does it state this. I asked to speak to a supervisor. I waited 20 minutes to speak to a “supervisor”. I asked Harvey (the supervisor) to review the notes on my account before continuing. He informed me that he had in fact reviewed the history on my account. He apologized for the lack of explanation and said, “I’m sorry you’re upset about the situation, but this should have been explained to you”. I
proceeded to get EXTREMELY upset. As now, not only was my account severely overdrawn but Direct TV was basically telling me that I was out of luck with getting any resolution to this monumental mistake. “There’s nothing I can do about this at this point and I’m apologize that you’re unhappy” is the last statement Harvey made to me. September 26, 2011 In reviewing my checking account this morning, I see a check payment of $99 paid to Direct TV. I contact the “office of the President” of Direct TV as according to the rep I spoke with a few days ago, part of the lack of full credit coming back to me was due to the $99 DVR box charge. Now they’ve charged me twice?! This representative reviewed the notes on my account and the history. She corrected the previous rep, when asked why I was charged twice for the DVR box, stated that I actually hadn’t been. Part of the short credit was because the monthly statement was cut on the19th of September for $79.00, and the install fee was actually $161.00. So, while the credit coming back was $81.56, the check by phone was
still put through for $99.00. She further explained that “the credit of $335 was actually a pending ‘Direct TV’ credit and if you incur charges to your ‘account’ before that credit is posted, those charges will be deducted from your refund”. She added, “It really is unusual that Direct TV would issue a credit back to the credit card, so that is something out of the ordinary that was done especially for you”. I asked about submitting the fax form for reimbursement of overdraft fees. She informed me “after reviewing your notes…honestly, I can tell you, our finance division is not going to reimburse you for those overdraft fees”. Summary: I am a single mother of 2 children. I am going through a divorce of 17 years. I have been a stay at home mother for 13 years. My only source of income is child support and we live on a very tight budget. Since the end of this nightmare in the last week with Direct TV, I have incurred 8 overdraft fees (totaling $208), I have $500 in overdraft protection from my
credit union which was chewed up in the first 2 days with outstanding checks and overdraft fees. Because my overdraft protection had been exhausted, I’ve had 3 additional checks returned for NSF and incurred additional overdraft fees, and one check returned for NSF was to the California DMV for my registration renewal. I have yet to see what the ramifications of that will be. I have literally been “ill” over this. I’m nauseous, I have heartburn, I’ve had to borrow cars from friends just to take my children to school because I’ve had no cash for gas. I’ve been unable to buy groceries, or do ANYTHING for my family since this initial self-admitted Direct TV mistake. They need to be stopped from doing this to people. They lie. They have “procedures and rules” that only they know about. They don’t inform their customers! They’re hurting people and it needs to stop. The irony of all of this…in upgrading my service with a DVR box, I inadvertently extended my contract with them another 24 months! Something else they neglected to tell me. Which, if I’m unhappy with that situation, they informed me yesterday, September 28, 2010, it will cost me a mere $480 to cancel my service! How can I not laugh...out this?

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