Apx Alarm / Refusal to Acknowledge Legal Cancellation; Using oral statement over the telephone to effectively create an unbreakable five year contract
APX came to our door and my wife signed a contract. The equipment was installed later that day. Did not work satisfactorily at all.
We talked it over and she faxed a cancellation to APX within 3 business days, along with a letter asking them to come pick up their equipment. All nice and legal.
So, a few days later a guy from APX telephoned her in the afternoon. He's so sorry she decided to cancel. They love their customers. They care about the safety of our family. Could they please come back and bring more equipment to make it work right? Free equipment. Please? So, she finally said OK. Bad idea.
A day or two later a guy shows up. Adds some more equipment. Still does not work right.
We call APX. It's still not working for us. Well, give us another chance. We'll bring another piece of equipment. Aren't we a nice company?
Another visit. Another piece of equipment. Still did not work right (too long to explain, but we got so many unavoidable false alarms just in evaluating the setup that the monitoring company told us we would start getting charged extra for one more false alarm).
So, we disconnected the system from the lines and electrical power (which we were told would produce an immediate phone call to see if we were being held hostages or something - I get it. A joke. Utah humor). Heard nothing. We wrote APX multiple letters confirming we were canceling.
We heard nothing. For more than two months.
Finally, only after we had changed our credit card number - and only when they called to ask us for a new number -- did we hear a word from APX Alarm.
But at least there was a live person on the phone from APX, at last! A nice person from that nice company. Well, nice person, we had canceled the service. Check our file. See those multiple letters? See that written cancellation notice? Notice the whole service was disconnected from the phone line and electrical power more than two months ago? It's a no brainer.
If you've followed APX complaints you already know what's next.
Nope. Can't cancel. Not now. Not ever. Five years in full.
Now, let me make what just happened clear: My wife signed a contract. The she canceled it in writing within 3 days.
Then APX called my wife out of the blue and, over the phone, got her consent to come back and see if they could "make things right."
That was it. Period. Nothing else given for us to see or sign. Nothing.
Her over-the-phone consent (APX insists) makes an unbreakable five-year contract. This assumes an otherwise sane woman would knowingly make an unbreakable contract to a voice over the telephone for equipment and service she had not yet seen or evaluated.
They know exactly what they did. Chris (their phone guy) was very good. He played perfectly on my wife's desire to be a nice lady to nice people who just seemed to care so much about us they wanted to please have a second chance.
Of course, this whole scenario also asserts that APX can void a legal written cancellation by using oral consent made during an unanticipated telephone call they initiate -- all without any attempt to bring us any later written documents to read, think about, or sign.
There are reasons oral contracts are not supposed to be valid in these kinds of sales -- so that consumer will not just become prey to slick salespeople who manage to get a person to just say "OK" at the right moment.
There are reasons FTC and many states give some extra protections to consumer in door-to-door sales - because it is not a product or service you (the consumer) seeks out or expresses any prior interest to the company that you want.
We took all their equipment down, carefully packaged it up, photographing every step, and mailed it all back to them using signature required UPS (they did receive the package).
Many months later, after hours (!) of frustrating talking-to-a-brick-wall phone conversations, we finally sent a letter to our state's office of consumer affairs. They contacted APX. So, nice Mr. Wilcox from APX wrote that we were just being such terribly unreasonable people. He said they'd be even willing to send (yet another) technician into our house see if THEY (not us) were satisfied. The determination of a satisfactory system was their call. Not ours. And, sure, just maybe they'd even bring another piece of equipment . . .
Agreeing to let them come back to try and fix it the first time is what got us into this mess! Of course, by then (and still) we want nothing to do with this demanding and unethical company and their (in my personal non-lawyer opinions) illegal predatory tactics.
Never mind it never worked right. Never mind we canceled the contract in writing. Never mind we confirmed that multiple times in writing. Never mind we sent everything back to them and don't have so much as a screw from APX in our house. They demand and their buddies at Anderson, Crenshaw, and Assoc. (that nice collection agency from Dallas) have shouted at us for every cent of a five year contract or they'll ruin our credit or go and maybe go for our house.
Makes we want to go to Utah on vacation. Maybe Provo. Such nice people. So concerned about me and my family.
Well, heaven help to the next poor young salesperson who knocks on our door - I'll be reaching for the cattle prod as I start screaming at them to get off our property and never come back. Then, I'll think about maybe running and warning the neighbors. Shame. They just might have been from an honest company.
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