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Chemistry.com / bill without notice, won't refund

United States Review updated:
3
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I signed up about a year ago through match.com. They made it look like an add on to match.com, and even gave me the same username. When I dropped match.com, I supposed I was dropped from chemistry.com. Many months later, I saw a $100 bill on my bank statement. I contacted chemistry.com saying I hadn't given them permission to charge me for their service. I sure hadn't used it in several months. I guess they managed to screw me, even though I contacted them within ten days of their charge. Screwing me was probably their intent because, unlike reputable firms, they did not give any notice were going to charge me: you can be sure they were not unaware that I hadn't touched their service in months and clearly had no use for it.

My email exchange with them follows:

Chemistry.com <customercare@online.chemistry.com>
reply-to customercare@online.chemistry.com
to sinclair@stanyangroup.com
date Wed, Aug 20, 2008 at 8:58 PM
subject Resigning / Cancelling Membership ISSUE=93320 PROJ=31

hide details 8:58 PM (1 hour ago)


Reply


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Notification of Issue Change

Description:

Entered on 08/20/2008 at 13:58:08 by Hector P:
Dear Member,

Thank you for contacting us about your subscription. At this time, we apologize for any inconvenience, but we do not offer partial or full refunds on subscriptions. However, your account has been resigned, and you will retain full access of the site until 11/3/2008.

For immediate answers to most questions, please visit our HELP section at: http://chemistry.com/help/faq.aspx

Please take a moment to fill out this survey to let us know how we are performing.
http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=a5oX1Z_2f14rEov_2bj7JCb1kw_3d_3d

Best of luck,


Chemistry.com
Customer Care Representative
Héctor P.

Entered on 08/20/2008 at 13:16:09 by sinclair@stanyangroup.com:
TITLE=Resigning / Cancelling Membership
DESCRIPTION=I thought I canceled my account several months ago through match.com. You certainly did not have my permission to charge me another $99.96 for your service. But you did, and you gave me no notice of this. I had to find out about it from my bank statement.

When I went into your site to try to kill my account with chemistry.com, just like I did with match.com, your site did not respond after I chose to resign and remove my profile and after I entered my password for a second time. I tried again, and again, and it did not work. Funny, eveything else but my request to stop taking my money still seems to work just fine.

Please consider this a written demand to cancel my account immediately and completely and refund the $99.96 you billed me without my permission.

Yours Sincerely,

Lawrence Sinclair
0

Comments

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Ja
  2nd of Sep, 2008
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
Word of advise please read the terms of use on site as well as any site that you are giving your credit card to. It does state that there is auto renewal if account is not cancelled. it is also stated on the billing page when you subscribe. Other than that I do agree that the site does not deliver what is promised. Matches don't fit criteria, you don't get matches or they never respond back. When matches don't respond they always say that they are going to send it to the tech team. Whatever. They never fix it or respond. Another word of advise, if looking for a refund, threatened chargeback or BBB.
Ca
  30th of Nov, 2008
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
Completely agree with Jane Doe! It is stated in the terms of use, which is something that can be found on nearly almost every site on the internet. If you choose not to read the terms of use, and receive an "unauthorized charge" later on that is your responsibility. The most efficient way to cancel your subscription is to cancel on the website yourself or call the company so they can cancel it for you so you won't incur any future charges. Companies like Match and Chemistry receive thousands of emails everyday, so they won't necessarily get back to you the same day you send the email. Also, I think that it is pretty clear that Chemistry is not an add-on for Match as it takes you to a whole different website where you have to sign up for another subscription. As you must know now you do not cancel your subscription through Match.com and you are provided with notice of possible recurring charges in the terms of use and under your subscription status
Le
  25th of Oct, 2009
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
Pls report to this website they will take legal action against this company chemistry.com. Let the fraud stop !


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Le
  25th of Oct, 2009
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
seem like WWW.BBB.ORG (Better Business Bereau) are another better channel of getting this fraud company expose and your refund back

https://odr.bbb.org/odrweb/public/complaintlink.aspx
Ny
  9th of Nov, 2009
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
OK, here's the deal. I used to run a customer service department and used to make decisions on who's refunded and so on. Most of the time, you are responsible. If you agreed to a set of terms and conditions, and provided your billing information, 3 digit security code, and/or use VerifiedByVISA (or a similar program), you are obligated to pay the money. The site is holding up its end of the bargain, and you are expected to do the same. It doesn't matter if it's "10 days after the bill date". That is a condition that you made up; it wasn't in the contract (i hated when customers would make up their own terms).

That being said, any chargeback and/or complaint filed with the BBB is a waste of your time as if it is not a reasonable excuse (the site no longer works for example). Try and be responsible when agreeing to subscriptions and memberships. When you cancel your account, do so via email, so you have a copy of what you were promised and told. A phone call means nothing unless you also receive simultainous notification via email. Trust me. This is why court cases aren't decided over the phone, there needs to be some record of the transaction.

If you have a legitimate argument, then take the following steps. 1) email customer service. if no response, then try 2) phoning the company. Escalate the matter to the director of customer service, but don't demand to speak to the CEO or anything stupid. It just is insulting to the customer service person, and the CEO probably doesn't have time to speak with you anyway for your $49.95. If this doesn't resolve your situation, inform the customer representative that you plan on contacting the FTC, BBB, Attorney General's Office, your credit card company (if a company incurs a chargeback percentage of 3-4% of total business, the credit card company usually stops working with them. In this case, if the company is hovering around there, it might get them to refund you) and maybe even a local lawyer who specializes in class action lawsuits.
Ma
  2nd of Apr, 2010
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
I definitely agree with that it's an individual's responsibility to read the fine print and adhere to terms of contract. With that said, doing any kind of business with the public, especially in a customer service capacity, should allow for some flexibility and attentiveness to customer concerns. It's apparent to me now that Chemistry.com has exhibited a lengthy history of not caring what its customer base thinks. I've resigned myself to eating the cost of the new six month period that Chemistry has so thoughtfully enacted for me. I'm not certain yet how to effect change to prevent companies like Chemistry.com from including predatory autorenewal procedures in their terms. Perhaps enough momentum will gather, whether at the FTC or local BBBs, to force a change.


Thanks for the balanced views and the nod toward the appropriate governing bodies.

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