Direct TV / fees and penaltys!
I called DirecTV in October 2007 because they were charging me a $4.99 fee for a service plan on my receiver which I never signed up for or authorized. They had been charging me this fee since December (they just added it to my account). I get my bill automatically deducted each month so I wasn't opening my statement (which I agree was stupid). They originally told me that they could only credit up two months but then when I pressed the issue to the point of mentioning who knows how many peoples accounts they have added this fee to they decided to go ahead and credit the entire amount. I had already been thinking about switching to AT&T so when this happened I decided to make the switch when my contract was up. I asked the representative to see when my contract was up and the representative told me December 11th. The representative even notated on my account that this conversation took place. So I signed up for AT&T to be installed December 6th and planned to cancel my DirecTV account on/around the 11th. When I called to cancel they told that there would be a $67.01 fee because my contract was not up until 2008. The representative did not say that it would not be up for another year and a half or 2008 at any point. When I asked to speak to a supervisor it was greatly discouraged and they kept telling me that there was nobody I could speak to that could do anything to help me. The final person I talked to regarding this issue told me that it doesn't matter what the representative told me it was my responsibility to know when my contract was up. Originally I was not trying to get out of my contract but just get through it. I took the steps to call and find out when my contract was up but even though they gave me the wrong information DirecTV still would not only not let me out of my contract but would not even meet me partial way to come to a compromise because of the miscommunication. The supervisor actually told me because they had credited my account for the $4.99 fee that they had already done enough for me (this is the same fee they never should have charged me) and there was nothing else he could do. So I set my account up for cancellation and paid the cancellation fee.
DirecTV then sent me two boxes in the mail to mail my receivers back. The boxes did not come with any due by date and my statement did not have a due by date on it. So after a month DirecTV charged a $319.35 fee to my Visa card. I wasn't overly upset about this because it had been a month. So I called DirecTV to make sure that when I sent the boxes back I would see the credit to my card and the woman assured me that I could still return them and get my money back. I sent them back to DirecTv on 1-29-8. I did not see a credit to my visa card as of 2-5-08 so I called to make sure that they had received them. The representative said they had and that they credited my direcTV account. I asked her why they would credit my DirecTV account when I had closed it and why the money didn't go back onto the card they had charged. She said that it always goes back to the account but I could request to have a check sent to me but it would take 6-8 weeks. Now this makes me mad they can charge my card without any warning but they can't put the money back onto my card that they charged. This does not make sense to me. This seems like a very wrong business practice and they should be required to return the money however it was taken out. She told me that there was nothing that she could do. So I asked to speak to a Supervisor again. I waited on hold for about 10 minutes (which isn't that bad, could have been worse) and then she came back on and said they could do a Urgent Refund Request which would credit the money back to my card but could take up to 8 days. I told her that was fine and to go ahead and process the request.
I am submitting this letter because everything is extremely shady with this company from charging my account with out approval, to not standing behind what their representatives, and then telling me there is not way to put the money back on my card and then coming back with this Urgent Refund Request. DirecTv should be investigated for how many accounts they have added that fee to without approval.
Thank you for your time.
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