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Dish Network


False advertising, wrong billing, poor customer service

Complaint Rating:  96 % with 444 votes
96% 444
I had a similar experience with the Dish Network. The salesman for Dish told me we had 60 days to cancel with no fees, after we mailed the equipment back we got a bill for $400. Several years later and supposedly a little wiser we hesitantly decided to try Direct Tv. This time i made sure to ask all the right questions about billing and cancellation. I was promised a 30 day trial period no strings attached, the salesman even told me they knock off another $10 from the bill if you pass a credit check.

Direct tv was installed on a friday in march-07. We signed up for the plus package- 185 channels/hbo & cinemax free for 3 months for $44.99, no dvr included. The following monday we received a bill from them for $59.99. I called to question and correct the amount. I had to speak with several people getting different answers and reasons about the bill amount. When i mentioned cancelling the service i was told i would be fined because i exceeded their 7 day cancel policy its not 30, then i was "accidentally" disconnected.

When i called back after jumping through several hoops, the next person tells me its not 7 days, you only have 3 days to cancel from activation, then i was "accidentally" disconnected again.

Several weeks later we get a second bill for $59. Now we owe them for 2 months and we've only had service for a little over 5 weeks. Several days later they shut off our service.

During this experience with direct tv i've learned several facts:

1- customer service is lousy, they are either all stupid or they are all lying about everything.

2- direct tv will terminate your service within a 40 day period or sooner if a single bill is not paid, even a new customer.

3- in order to get the advertised package prices, you need to mail in a rebate form that takes 6-8 weeks and no interuption of service to qualify. This redemption can be ended at the discretion of direct tv at any time which can send your bill back up.

4- the installer doesnt have you sign anything. Your first bill is considered your contract with the terms of agreement and is also your redemption form to get the rebate for a lower bill.

5- direct tv's billing is pro-rated, this fancy word means your actually paying ahead for the service before you use it instead of after.

6-after your service is shut off, they will obviously call and try to collect the money, but they will also try to get you to cancel so they can add another $300 to your bill.

My best advice to anyone thinking about ordering directv is not to do it. They smack of false advertising and hidden details and poor customer service. If you already have directtv, do not cancel the service because they will bill you $300 or more on top of the monthly bill you owe. Your actually better off just not paying the bill... this way if they shut your service off, and you dont cancel, they cant even ask for the box back.

If your service is shut off, make sure you unplug the box right away because they can actually keep billing you month to month. This is because they dont actually kill the signal to the box, you still get a couple channels, but the only thing you can really watch are pay per view and the 24 hour ad channels.
Complaint comments Comments Complaint country United States Complaint category Satellite & Cable TV
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 21st of Nov, 2007 by    +2 Votes
After many issues of bad service, I discontinued my subscription with DTV, I was forwarded to a resolution specialist who calculated my final bill, and I received the bill, paid it, marked my check final payment. I continued to be billed, with each bill, I called waited 10+ minutes to tell a representative that I was no longer a customer, mailed each bill back with that notation, I final go a disconnect notice and a final bill and have been dealing with DTV and all regulatory agencies for 2 years. Basically DTV is exempt from any and I mean any type of control, they have no assets in most states, and you can't even sue them in small claims court. As a consumer you are totally at their mercy, and they are very poor business folks, with schemes to take advantage of the consumer with no regulation.
 14th of Jan, 2008 by    +1 Votes
Direct TV is the worst company I have ever dealt with in my 65 years of life. They are liars, their customer service absolutely s*cks, and they are in business mainly to cheat their customers.
 6th of Mar, 2008 by    +3 Votes
DirecTV told us that we would get several channels that we cannot get. In ninety days, we have had 8-10 days that we did not get a signal and could not watch TV because it rained or was cloudy or snowed. The service is unreliable. When we asked if we could get out of the contract, they told us we had 3 days, but if we would pay $400 they would let us out of the contract. DirecTV has no honor or it would let dissatisfied customers out of a contract with they do not deliver the services they promised.
 11th of Apr, 2008 by    0 Votes
I think, overall Direct TV does a good job of providing the programming as advertized. My complaint with them is outsourcing their customer service to the Phillipines. I think if you choose to outsource, then outsource everything, including the sales. They don't because their sales would drop dramatically. Just like DELL, wonder why their outsourcing has been cut back?
 13th of May, 2008 by    +2 Votes
I will NEVER order Direct TV again. I hope anyone thinking about this will do the same. I just completed 1 year of service with Direct TV and the whole time I was locked into the agreement I had nothing but problems from BS promises on pricing to customer NO service. Recently after finally ending my service agreement after the year I received a charge for the boxes totalling 175.00. I called Direct TV and they said that even though I was getting the boxes free with a 1 year subscription, I had to send them in or they charge you for them. I really didn't need the boxes anyway and I still had them, so I sent them in. Well its been going on a month and I still haven't received my credit back to my card. I called into customer NO service and they said it can take up to 30 days. 30 DAYS?? didnt take them but 24hrs to charge me!! I have worked in sales and service for 12 years. Even 12 years ago when I first started I never saw a credit take more that 15 business days Surely a company that is built on communications by satalite can credit 175.00 to my card within 48hrs like any other institution. I now have Time Warner Cable for internet and TV and have been very pleased. I hope anyone reading this has access to ANY service other than Direct TV. I will tell all my friends, coworkers, family, etc. to never sign with them.
 13th of May, 2008 by    +3 Votes
Direct TV is the WORST!!!
I will never deal with them again.
There is something very dishonest with this company
 13th of May, 2008 by    +2 Votes
I just realized that I have been had by a real pro, Direct TV
It is very obvious that that they have a lot of practice in screwing people.
I vow to never use and to persuade others on the brink of the HD tv battle to Never, I repeat Never chose Direct tv.
Do anything but don't go with Direct tv.
 27th of May, 2008 by    +2 Votes
I ran out of adjectives to describe DirectTV. I signed up with DirectTV through DSI-TV, www.dsi-tv.com. I quote the agreement I signed "Within 14 days of downgrading or disconnecting your programming, you have an option to send all of your DIRECTTV System equipment to DIRECTTV in lieu of this payment (early termination fee.)" In addition, I was told that DirecTV would send me a self-addressed postage paid bag where I can just put the receivers and remote controls and drop at any FedEx pickup center. It has been almost seven months, after spending countless hours on hold and talking to the supervisors(?), I am yet to resolve this issue of early termination fee.

One of the supervisors, Rick at Idaho told me that they do not have fax where I could fax him the agreement. When I read him the agreement, he took time to communicate with his supervisors and declared that I was misled to a false agreement.

The standard reply from DSI-TV who came to my door, solicited the service, is that all the agreements are between the customer and DirectTV and they (DSI-TV) have got nothing to do with it.

DirecTV seems to have a very elaborative, complex customer service systems, in reality which is much worse than having no customer service. For example, if you want to speak to the previous supervisor, provide her/his name and ID, always the standered reply is that "we can not locate the supervisor."

It is best to stay away from DSI-TV/DirectTV.
 8th of Jun, 2008 by    +1 Votes
I had DirecTV service for a little over three years. It began with technical issues we had with our satellite. On nice days our satellite would be fuzzy and shut down. After numerous calls to the technical team they basically told me there was nothing they could do because the readings they had at their office said the system was working properly.

This went on for a few months and they it seemed to fix itself, all without help from the service department. Recently we decided to switch to another company because it would save us money each month. When I called to cancel the problems really began. First off they explained to me that the DVR we had was only a lease when I was specifically told when we purchased it that they were running a special and we could purchase the DVR for $99. They of course said that they informed us but they never did.

Aside from that lie then I specifically asked if we would be charged any cancellation fees. I was told twice that we would not be charged anything because we did not have an outstanding contract because we had previously fulfilled ours. The customer service rep then told me that we would be receiving a check for the month of service because we were cancelling within two days of the new month. I was told the check would arrive in 4-6 weeks. Well it has been almost 8 weeks so I called last night and not only were we not receiving a check but the money we should have been receiving went towards the CANCELLATION FEES. I was furious when I heard this. I explained everything to the rep and he basically said that we didn't fulfill our DRV agreement of two years. I spoke to a supervisor who explained that she would forward the complaint to the appropriate person but I am sure they will simply wipe their bottom with it. This type of behavior and lack of any response demonstrates to me that Directv obviously doesn't care about their customers.
 10th of Jul, 2008 by    0 Votes
I'm not sure how they get away with this. I too was a victim of false advertising. The sales person did not tell me everything and only later did I find out about all the hidden charges.
I spoke with several customer service people. Each one seemed to just want to pass me along to someone else without answering my questions.
I did cancel within my first DAY of service because of the difficulty with customer service and the unethical advertising. Please research carefully before deciding to go with this service.
 22nd of Jul, 2008 by    0 Votes
I cannot believe that a "savvy" consumer such as myself has been totally HAD by this company. Much the same experience.. signed up for a "special package" and quoted rates which were never honored; then told I had been "misinformed" about what I would be paying; then they refused to let me discontinue service less than 24 hrs after installation when I had been told I had "two months to cancel" (that also was misinformation evidently); then told the package I signed up for didn't exist - yes, it had been removed from the website and MY ACCT information..

Is this LEGAL? They refuse to honor what their representatives told me, yet expect me to honor a comittment I never agreed to.

And I signed up for "auto pay", so there is no way for me to just not pay the bill.. I'm stuck for two years. Wish I'd read all this prior to talking to the representative, who obviously lied to get me to sign up.

Stay away from this company !
 9th of Aug, 2008 by    0 Votes
I had the similar experiance with direct tv. These guys are such thiefs. When I signed up they told me that I had a one year contract which I was OK with. Through out the year they send me wrong bills all the time, off course for more money, and I had to call to adjust my bill and they would always appologize but did the same thing next month. Then I tried to cancel after a year thinking I have a one year contract but the person said that I had a 2 yr contract b/c I have HD box. I was shocked. when I told them that I only had a one yr contract and he said that the one yr contract is for the programming and the 2 yr contract is for the HD Box?????? The indian lady on the phone that I started the service with never told me anything about such thing. Now they want me to pay $150 for early termination fee. These guys are thiefs. I can't believe they can do this and get away with it. Something needs to be done.
 3rd of Sep, 2008 by    0 Votes
After reading all the Direct TV complaints on the internet I feel like a total moron for not looking here before I decided to do business with them, and now I am paying big time for it. But in an attempt to save someone else from this problem I will do my best to realy on as many avenues as possible that people should never do business with Direct TV. I set up service in my new home on a Tuesday, there were some hang up's with the process that I didn't like (Like writting a check for 75$ out directly to the installer for a pole b/c a roof install would void my home owner warrenty) but all and all everything went as expected and I arrived at my home to working TV. The next day however, was a different story. When I came home from work my service was not working at all, after calling direct tv and waiting for about an hour they adv they would have to send someone to fix it in five days. After stewing over this for a day and hearing all the trouble direct tv has with it's customers I decided I would cancel the servce. After all I had signed nothing yet, and regardless the sales lady told me I had 30 days to cancel the service no questions asked. When I called in to cancel it was like a whole different group of people. I told them b/c of problems w/ service I no longer wanted direct TV, they adv me at that point I would be subject to a 460$ early termination fee despite the fact I had not rec'd 1 full day of servce from them. I adv them of the 30 days I was offered and they said that was for equipmetn only, and that since I didn't call with in 24 hours to stop the service, that I had verbally agreed to a two year contract with them subject to early termination penalties/ we can't keep our customer fees. Like any reasonable human being I found it difficult to believe I agreed to something this obtuse. They adv the terms are on the internet, I adv them I signed up on the phone, they then basically said sorry, you still agreed. I then escalated to two more peopl above her, adv them prompty there was no way I going to give them god knows how much money to cancel a service I only rec'd for an hour. Since I am a supervisor in a call center I am fairly aware of how these processes work. I basically had to threaten going to every complaint and regulatory commitee (which I'm doing anyway) posible which they could care less about, but ultimatly I promised to call them every night right before they close and keep them on the phone for hours until I get satisfaction (no sup ever wants to hear this trust me). After some time they caved and adv since there service sucks they would cancel the service w/out any further charges on the acct (provided I turned in the eqiup on time, which I did). After a week goes by I notice a charge for 557.42$ from who else...Direct TV. After another tormenting hour I find out this was indeed the aformentioned charge to cancel my acct along with the first month worth of service added in. I had to fight, but finally I got someone on the phone who could decipher the English language enough to read the notes on the acct, they then adv me they were sorry and they will return my money in 10 business days. Well maybe that's ok for people with bottomless accts, but not with me. To date I am still awaiting my refund and now have to go atleast a week w/ out my money, more over I did nothing, even by their twisted guidlines to deserve this. To anyone considering Direct TV service please understand they care nothing about customer satisfaction and a total lack of ethics where business practices are concerned. Everything they offer you to sign up for the acct are traps that involve lengthy t/f's and abundant paperwork to redeem, furthermore they are specifically designed only to lock you in, once you are locked they really could care less about you. I don't expect stellar service from any utility company, but you should always be weary of any business who apllies charges to the cancelation of thier service, or lack ther of!
 9th of Sep, 2008 by    0 Votes
oh my god i can not get them to fix my bill they tell me since it is past due that i have to pay. my bill is usually 60 bucks but it is $197.00 what i dont order movies and they say i did not so why so much i even talked to supervisor who said too bad i wasso mad i cryed i dont have the money to pay that. They said pay it and then they will look into it what shit is that oh my god i cant get a hold of anyone and they said they have no other numbers.
 27th of Sep, 2008 by    +1 Votes
 27th of Sep, 2008 by    +1 Votes
false adverttisement as well...
 28th of Sep, 2008 by    0 Votes
I just got off of the phone with 3 different Direct TV reps. After having a terrible relationship with the company changing the bills etc., I cancelled the service at the end of September of 2007. TODAY, September 27, 2008, I get a notice on my credit report saying that I have been turned into a collection agency for not paying $136 for DirectTV. I immediately called Direct TV and they said "we can only go back 60 days..." WELL then how, a year later, do you decide that I owe $136??? When I closed/cancelled the account I was told there were no other charges. Now I'm hit with this a year later without having any knowledge of the issue. The three people I spoke to were not only incompetent, they were also very rude and highly trained to talk in circles, never answering your questions and also talking to you like you're in preschool. I own several businesses and have used them for their sports packages, but after today, every single package is cancelled and I am mandating that every store under my jurisdiction also cancels the service. I would rather pay a disconnect fee then be treated like a piece of trash by incompetent fools. With the economy in the state it is in, I'm surprised that a companywho specializes in "optional" and "not necessary" products would be more inclined to keep it's customers.
 10th of Oct, 2008 by    0 Votes
DirecTV and Dish are both terrible. I had Direct when it first came out, cost over 1200.00 for a two room system. Then, I had Dish for the last 4 years. Called them up, pointed out that I have been a good customer (auto-billing, all companies favorite thing) and that I would appreciate a free upgrade to a DVR. They told me 99.00, I said no thanx. Called to cancel the next day and guess what they offered me; free upgrade of EVERYTHING. Too late, already ordered something else. Called DirecTV and got everything for free. During the installation, my uncle points out to me that one of our cable companies, INSIGHT, had everything these guys had for 30.00 a month less!! (20.00 if you don't have internet and phone, which we do). So, I cancelled within the 24 hours I am required to do so here in Indiana. That was on September 3rd. I still haven't gotten my 492.00 early cancellation fee back!! I should have NEVER been charged!! But, since they had my credit card, they figured why not hit me for what for them amounts to an interest-free loan FOR THEM. I have called numerous times (5), have been told something different every time. Finally got the truth from Kim: two billing cycles must go by, THEN YOU GET YOUR MINEY BACK IN 6 to 8 weeks. What a scam. Here is what sucks for them; I don't like the cable that much. Think I'll be going back to DirecTV? Hmm..
 10th of Oct, 2008 by    +1 Votes
Advice to all: Save your paperwork, then go to small claims court. You will win.
 20th of Oct, 2008 by    -2 Votes
I have had DirecTV for over 12 years, and they have been a good company to deal with. Had to have a few recivers replaced due to lighting strikes, but have always been pleased with the service I got from them.
Started out Primestar in begining.

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