Direct E-Cig / Questionable Business Practices
I had purchased their FREE E-cig device on 01-07-2011. I authorized a $4.95 withdraw from my banking account for S&H. I had not heard from them so on 01-13-2011 I e-mailed them and asked when it would be shipped. I received and signed for the product with Fed-X on 01-17-2011. On 01-22-2011 I went into my on line checking account and noticed that an UN-AUTHORIZED withdraw by them was pending in the amount of $109.90. I called my bank and they stated that there was nothing they could do except cancel my bankcard and re-issue another. I did this at that time. The toll free number Direct E-Cig gives for customers to call was not answered the first 2 times. You are kept on hold for extended periods of time. The third time it was a 30 min hold. Monique informed me that it was not a free kit, it was a 14-day free trial and that only 99.95 would be refunded; she would email me the RMA numbers that need to go with the return. There were other things stated in the e-mail that would also give them reason to renege on the refund that concerned me. I asked the following of her:
1. Will the refund amount be listed in the e-mails? She responded, “Yes”.
2. What were the 109.90 charges for? She responded “For additional cartridges”
I informed her I did not order any additional cartridges nor have I received any. How can I return a product I have never received or ordered? She stated, “They have been mailed by U.S. Postal and I should be receiving them. Do NOT return anything until the cartridges are received and return them all together.”
When I received her 2 emails it states in them “Your return must be made within 3 days of receipt of this email which would make it 01-24-11. I have sent two other emails to them requesting DETAILED answers to my questions with no current response.
On their “Terms” page http://directecig.com/t-and-c.php that was pointed out to me, it states enrollment I did not enroll in their program to receive future shipments nor did I authorize further withdrawals from my bank account.
I have since read numerous similar or identical complaints on line.
Enrollment implies you have signed up for something, which I did not do. And 14 day free trial of their product implies 14 days from receipt. I did not receive mine until day 10 and it is not stated on any of their order pages of their web site that the free trial begins with date of shipping. Also, the only paper work received was a customer receipt with a zero balance due. NO other paper work was received with the free kit, not even how to put their product together; Nothing to inform the consumer they were going to take further funds from your account. The only thing authorized was the $4.95 for S&H of the starter kit.
Up-Date: 01-23-11 at 2:05PM Mt Time. Informed Diane that the call may be recorded she stated I would receive a full refund of the $109.90 and the three-day email rule would not apply. I asked for it in writing, in an email and she agreed. Ten minutes later the email was received. It did not mention ANYTHING of the conversation we had just had and it was an email stating that another product had just been shipped to me. I replied stating that if they shipped another product I would not return it nor pay for it and it would be considered a free gift. I then called the company back. Per Jennifer, this time; the cartridges were a free gift not the 109.90 charge and I would not be receiving the full refund. I also informed her that the call was being recorded for quality assurance, which it was. You cannot get a straight answer from these people. They are extremely evasive, hang up on you, do not answer emails and in my case out right lie to you.
This company needs to be sued and shut down for their unscrupulous business practices.