The unauthorized placing of a service referred to as NFL Sunday Ticket charges by DirecTV on my bill reflects deceptive business practices. When we initially signed up with DirecTV in January of 2008, we were offered the NFL Sunday Ticket option as a free service, which I declined, however they insisted, because it was "free", so why not (they said that, not me). We were told we could cancel it anytime prior to the expiration of the 3 months "New Customer Offer" and there would be no charge(s). (Please note, no one in my household watches football, and the only males are my husband and 3 year old grandson. Neither of them have any interest in the sport. We did not even "use" the service when it was given to us free as new customers.)
On February 26, my husband called to cancel any and all extra services and maintain only our Choice Xtra program with DirecTV. On our July Qwest/DirecTV bill, the NFL Sunday Ticket showed up again with a charge of $0.00. My husband paid no attention to it as it was a zero charge. However, on our August statement, a charge of $41.50 showed up. So I contacted DircecTV offices to have the charges and service removed. Not canceled, as we did not order it, but removed as an erroneous charge.
I spoke to 4 (four) different very inept representatives in their office and was told that a "mailer" in some form had gone out stating the charges would be placed on my bill. I do not know of any mailer, and do not recall having seen anything saying I was going to be charged for the service. I do not deny if it was sent or not, but if it was, the wording on it must have not left me with the impression that I was going to be charged $249. Apparently, according to the DirecTV staff, the "default" was that my account would be charged, just for having received the mailer and not responding with a resounding "NO". This is where I am stating that the billing practices in this matter are deceptive and perhaps illegal. In order to have a charge to my account for any service, the business must have my permission. An alleged "act of omission" on my part in this matter does not give them the authority to charge my account. Their default should be set to "NO" unless the specific charges are authorized.
I have spent hours with rude customer service reps and their supervisors and all have told me that I can't have it removed. If a credit and/or a charge shows up on my bill next month, I will be in their office in a heartbeat. I have filed a complaint with the BBB (of which they are not a member - go figure) and I am currently filing a complaint with the Division of Civil Rights located here in Denver.
Their customer service is horrible, many of the reps do not speak/understand English. If you ask for a supervisor, they just get one of their buddies in the next cubicle on the phone. When talking to anyone at DirecTV, they cannot give out their last name, however ALWAYS GET THEIR EMPLOYEE BADGE NUMBER.