I am writing to inform others of how bad AT&T has treated me as a customer. I will start at the beginning. I use AT&T phone service but previously got my internet service from the local cable provider. Although I was on the “Do not call” list, I received approximately 8 calls from AT&T sales people in 4 months who tried to get me to switch to their DSL service.
Some of them were very aggressive and even acted like jerks but I calmly asked them to stop calling me, yet they continued to call. Even though I didn't appreciate all of the unsolicited sales calls, I needed to save some money and decided to make the switch. Part of the reason for my decision was based on AT&T's television advertisements where they claimed I would get a certain reward based on the service I signed up for.
I called AT&T on October 28, 2007 and signed up for the DSL service and was told that I would get a $75.00 rebate check for the modem and a $125.00 reward check after I filled out the coupon and mailed it along with a copy of my recent cable internet bill. I was told it would take 4-6 weeks to receive the reward check. I checked online and as soon as I was eligible, I printed off the form, filled it out accurately, signed it and sent it along with the copy of my cable bill to the correct address provided. I did everything promptly and accurately. Then I waited almost 6 weeks and did not receive the checks.
Towards the end of December, 2007, I called AT&T's customer service department to find out the status of the checks and was told that I was disqualified. When I asked why, the girl couldn't give me a legitimate answer and acted like she couldn't care less anyway. I hung up and called back and got the same response from another representative. They didn't even know how to qualify me again. I asked to speak to a manager and was told it would be 24 to 48 hours before a manager could call me. That was a convenient way to blow me off.
I waited a couple more weeks and called back in early January, 2008. This time I spoke to a lady who acted like she knew what she was doing and cared more about me as a customer. She said that they had been having trouble with their reward program but assured me that she had re-qualified me for the $125.00 reward. Then I spoke to her manager who re-qualified me for the $75.00 rebate. I was told that it would take another 4-6 weeks. I did receive the $75.00 rebate check in the mail about a week later. If I hadn't called back when I did though, I doubt that I would have gotten it. However, the $125.00 reward check never came.
So I waited until February 8, 2008 and called the reward center. I explained the situation again and was told that I was once again listed as disqualified. I was livid. I was then told I had to call the AT&T customer service center again because they were the ones who needed to rectify my qualification status. I then called the customer care center and was told that my $125.00 reward check was actually mailed the previous day on February 7, 2008 and it would take 7-10 business days to receive it. I called again and talked to another representative who confirmed that the check was sent and also confirmed the tracking number.
10 business days passed and still no check. I called the AT&T customer service center this morning, February 22, 2008, and once again had to explain the history of this issue. The girl set up a conference call for me with her and a manager at the Reward Center. I explained the problem to her and she told me that I was still disqualified and the customer service center would have to qualify me again. She said it would be another 4-6 weeks before I would receive the check. I said “This is ridiculous. I never should have been disqualified the first time.” I then asked the girl who was still on the call from the customer service center to let me speak to her manager.
This time she got a manager who wasn't worth much. The moron had no idea what to do. I asked him to set up a conference call with a manager at the reward center to get this straightened out once and for all. He told me he couldn't do that even though the customer service representatives could. That didn't make any sense. I told him to call a manager at the reward center and have him call me but of course that never happened. I then called the customer service center one more time, explained the situation again, and she contacted a manager at the reward center.
I was told by this manager that the disqualification was only lifted today and it would be another 4-6 weeks before I received the check. I said “You are just stringing this along. How am I to believe I will get it then after the experience I have already had with AT&T? I have already waited over 3 months. Why can't you send it now?” She curtly told me that she would not change it and that's the way it was. Nobody ever gave me a good reason why I had ever been disqualified because there was not one. I hung up.
AT&T is the worst company I have ever dealt with. They are trying their best not to send people the reward money they were promised. I am appalled by their carelessness, irresponsibility, and unethical behavior. I did everything right according to their rules and all I have gotten from them is misleading information and lies. The customer service center and the reward center keeps passing the buck back and forth and cannot seem to communicate correctly and get their act together. What is amazing is that they are a communications company! I am sorry that AT&T was allowed to buy BellSouth back and become more of a monopoly again.
Their television commercials are lies. They are experts at getting your bills to you on time and I have paid every one of them on time, but evidently they will not honor their word and pay many of their customers the reward that they promised them. I have read similar complaints from other customers on the internet and that is probably the tip of the iceberg since most of the customers have probably not said much.
I am speaking up because now it is not so much about the money as the principle of AT&T doing the right thing. Nobody likes being lied to and given the run-a-round but that is what they have given me. They are unethical and pathetic. I would recommend to anyone who reads this message that you avoid AT&T. They don't seem to have a thread of decency.
KETTERING, OHIO -- Okay. My 86-year-old father died of a stroke last April. He lived alone, had Time Warner bundle of digital cable TV, internet service and home phone service. Following the stroke Dad was in a nursing home for a month before he died and we kept the cable, as we adult kids took turns flying in from our various home states and staying at his house. But by June it didn't make sense to keep it all, so before I left to go back to California I canceled the Time Warner bundle and called AT&T so there would at least be phone service. So I ordered the basic home service, gave my alternate address and cell phone number in California, etc.
I was told I HAD TO BE THERE at Dad's house for the installation and would be contacted in a few days. I wasn't. A few WEEKS later I was called on my cell phone that they were coming out on a specific date. I said, "Well, I'm back in California, can you install it without me there?" "No." I said, "Well, I'll see if I can find a neighbor of Dad's but if you don't hear from me, I haven't been able to do that and we'll reschedule the next time I'm back in Ohio."
Couldn't find a neighbor, decided the phone service could just wait until I was back in January.
Imagine my surprise when I get to Dad's house last week and found $80+ worth of phone bills month after month, and then the final shut-off notice. I called AT&T billing and was told this was a customer service issue. Transferred to customer service (and none of this is quick, you're on hold for a good five minutes each time). Customer service said "no, this was a billing problem", and before I could take a breath I was transferred back to Billing.
Billing person said that I owed the bill, didn't matter I wasn't there (I didn't need to be there, no one would have told me that - HUH?). I said "LOOK, I had no idea the service was started, no idea you were billing me at an address where I didn't live..." Oops. Wrong thing to say, BACK to Customer Service. Never get the same people of course so have to start my saga at the beginning each time. Explained again, said that the phone service they installed hadn't even worked or there would have been phone messages on Dad's answering machine.
She said, "Well, we don't COVER that, you would need to call a service representative and there is a $75 minimum charge for us to come out and do that." And yes, transferred again. At this point I'm not sure to whom, customer service or billing. I just said to WHOEVER I was talking to, "DO NOT TRANSFER ME ANYMORE!" Told my story YET and asked point blank if they were expecting me to pay. This rep said, "Well, I'll tell you what we can do for you, how about you only owe half the bill?"
I took that option rather than being tortured through eternity between AT&T billing and customer service. I've paid more for less. But, I will not do business with AT&T again, I am even going to switch my AT&T home service in California to the same as my internet provider. Hardly use that home phone anymore anyway, and don't know why my bill is so high for that phone line that is barely used since I got my cell phone. So the UP side is I am finally moved to take care of that. Will more than take care of the baseless charge AT&T stuck me within Ohio.
HOFFMAN ESTATES, ILLINOIS -- I am writing this letter as a result of, what I believe to be, the worst customer service and business ethics, from a service-driven company, I have ever seen. I will start off by stating that this letter will be lengthy, but I feel it deserves attention due to the countless hours I have spent on the phone with AT&T and never got the results I deserved. The following is a brief outline of the troubles I have had dealing with AT&T in the short thirteen month time period I was a customer of AT&T.
I first became a customer of AT&T phone and internet service in June 27th 2006. The first issue that I encountered with AT&T is that the one hundred and fifty dollar rebate that I was promised on my DSL modem was never returned to me. To start my service off, I already paid one hundred and fifty dollars out of my own pocket and never had it returned. I tried to resolve this issue with customer service but I never received a solution to my problem.
After that point the service was fine until I encountered my next issue. In April of 2007 our internet service went down, for no reason. There were never any changes made to the way that anything was set up inside my home. For the next two weeks I spent almost every night on the phone with AT&T. Every customer service representative that I spoke with had me perform numerous maintenance checks and make changes to my internet settings to try to resolve the issue. Each time I called I had to go through this even though I explained to the customer service representative that I had already performed these checks and I needed more assistance.
This was extremely frustrating to me, not only did I not have internet but I also wasted countless hours on hold, being transferred without receiving a positive solution to my problem. Finally the second to last phone call that was made regarding this issue, a customer service representative informed me that a technician would have to come out to fix the problem. I was informed at that point that if the problem was and issue on my end that I would be charged, but if the issue was on AT&Ts end there would be no charge for the technician to come out.
The next day when I arrived home from work, my internet miraculously started working. I placed yet another call to AT&T, to try to stop a technician from making an unnecessary trip. When I spoke with the customer service representative, I was informed that a technician had already been out to our service area, not my home, and the technician resolved the issue at a connection point somewhere in my area. During this time I was credited back (to the exact cent) the days that I was out of internet service. I only received this credit after calling and speaking to yet another customer service representative and demanding that I have a credit posted to my account.
I was quite disappointed with the credit we received because first of all I had to demand it, and secondly I feel that a company that truly values their customers would offer some sort of apology for the inconvenience no matter if it was verbal or monetary. I never received either, in fact I received a sixty dollar charge on my next statement for a technician to repair my service. I never understood how we were ever charged this considering that a technician never entered my home. I was at work when my service was restored.
The next point in our troubles with AT&T involves me moving. I called AT&T and transferred my service, after doing so I was still trying to get some resolution to the sixty dollar service fee I was charged. Finally I made a decision on July 17th 2007 that I would never receive the type of service that I needed from AT&T, so I called to cancel my service beginning on July 27th 2007. Quite frankly I felt more at ease paying more for similar service than having to deal with the customer service issues at AT&T.
Overall, I could go on and on about the details of every situation we have encountered with poor, if not horrible, customer service, but I will try to sum up my frustrating experience for you. My service was never cancelled in July 27th 2007, it was transferred and I continued to receive bills versus the credits that I know were owed to me. The service still was not successfully cancelled even after I called back on the July 27th 2007, the day I moved, after I saw a technician connecting service at my new residence.
Since July 27th 2007 I have placed five phone calls to AT&T trying to cancel my service once and for all. Every time that I called I was assured that my service was cancelled, but it never was. At this point I know that I am still owed approximately sixty five dollars in credit from AT&T and certainly do not owe AT&T anymore money, and I am still not sure that this issue was completely resolved. In all honesty I feel that I deserve much more than the sixty five dollars, due to all the time, cell phone minutes, frustration and energy I have wasted trying to get the service I paid for to work properly and get money returned to me.
In closing this letter I want you to know, as I have never felt Ive been treated so horribly from a service company. I will no longer be a customer of AT&T services in any way. At this point I feel that I will never get the apology that I deserve from AT&T. AT&T has had many opportunities to apologize, fix errors where necessary in order to regain me as a customer, and that have failed to do so.
And after my experience with AT&T I doubt I will even get a response to this letter. I can also guarantee that if I have any influence on any family member, friend or co-workers decision to do business with AT&T, I will give them a copy of this letter and recommend that they not do business with AT&T.
CARNEYS POINT, NEW JERSEY -- Someone from a prison has been calling my house collect in error. We do not accept these calls, instead we hang up. AT&T has sent bills for reflecting these calls are one minute long. Upon speaking with one represetative, explaining that this is a billing error, I've been placed on hold. The next person to pick up is never the first person I spoke with, so I explain the situation again (and again).
A call from their collections department got me back to several more customer service representatives. In response to my explanation of these unwanted calls, I explained once we would hear the operator and then the person speak, we would hang up. The first representative stated that the caller does not say anything until the call is accepted. I explained that this caller, apparently in frustration, surpassed saying his name and would say "** pick up the phone!", which made her statement incorrect. I felt as if the blame was being placed on me!
Finally, after being placed on hold four times and speaking to yet more people, the final AT&T employee that I spoke with stated that we must be accepting the calls. It was at that time I pointed out that even a "I'm sorry you have the wrong number." would exceed a few seconds and requested the definitive time frame of the calls. An offer to remove "some" of the charges was made. However, since this is not a service that I used, I don't feel it is fair for me to be obligated to pay for erroneous charges.
The last representative suggested I block collect calls. I'm not quite sure why I should have to do that to avoid bogus charges. If I used the service, I would pay for it, but I did not. If there is an emergency and one of my kids has to call collect, I want to have the option available. I was also told by the last representative that if my voicemail had picked up the call, that would have incurred the charges. For clarification, I very specifically asked him "No one would have to accept the call?". He said unfortunately, "no".
So, some guy in prison dials the wrong number, no one accepts it, but since the voicemail answers, the consumer is obligated to pay for it... Is there something wrong here? My father had several hundred dollars worth of charges. Seems a prisoner was charging their calls to his home phone. Keep in mind, no one was home to approve these calls. The response to that was that it is a scam and prisoners can share a telephone number with others to make calls. Again, because AT&T does not have safeguards (such as a real person accepting the call and/or charges), the consumer is held responsible.
I asked the AT&T representative "is there a way to avoid ANY charges from this company". He stated the block would be my only option. So, in other words, they can bill me, whether correct or not, if they so choose and not be obligated to justify those charges. My billable time is $40.00 an hour, I'm considering sending them a bill for my time they have wasted. I asked for the specific amount of time per call, as I am positive they are less than an entire minute. That information was not available to him.
MAINE -- Just an update... STILL have yet to receive the return shipping label. I refused to pay for the first installment (of four) for the cheap incomplete phone. Still getting emails from my AT&T complaints asking me to call 800 numbers who put me on hold for 15 minutes. And NOW, and this is RICH... getting a REAL LIVE PERSON calling ME from AT&T from the COLLECTIONS DEPARTMENT threatening to "cancel service with AT&T." I was delighted to inform them that they needn't bother. I saved them the trouble by switching to Verizon. Finally, one note on the irony of AT&T SALES ADS being posted next to my comments. I have posted the latest three replies below. TOO FUNNY!!!
REDMOND, WASHINGTON -- My husband and I just got off the phone with the AT&T wireless office in Washington State. On January 7th, I noticed that my debit card was missing and contacted my bank to cancel it. I sent out a payment to AT&T that same day in the form of a check. On the 9th, I realize that there were fraudulent charges on my account, this was on a Friday after they had closed so I had to wait until Monday the 12th to call my bank and put a stop payment on the check. On the fifteenth, I gave AT&T a courtesy call to let them know there was a stop payment on the check and explained why. I also told them that we would be reissuing another check for the full payment.
I was told by one of their brilliant cs reps that everything would be fine. On the 21st, I got online to check my bank account and was surprised to see a $20 return check fee from my bank. I called to find out why since there was a stop payment on the check. They said that apparently, AT&T transferred my paper check, into an "electronic check", and the bank did not pick up on this. They reversed the charges but said that I needed to speak with AT&T concerning this. When I called them (AT&T) they said that the check had already posted. Posted means they have "received" the check but has not processed it.
When I called them on the fifteenth, they had not attempted to process the check. Any other month they use regular means to process my paper check. The lady told me my account balance and I sent a check in for that amount. Today I noticed that they again processed this check electronically. When I attempted to call my husband I realized that the phone had been turned off. I immediately called AT&T to find out why. The rep said there was a $20 return check fee that wasn't paid. I explained to her as calmly as I could that should not be because they had no business trying to process a check with a stop payment on it.
The rep told me that it didn't matter, they will process anyway KNOWING that you will be charged for a return check. (REALLY?) But if the check is done electronically, what was returned??!! I asked for one of their even more brilliant resolution specialists and got a brick wall, they said the phone would stay off until the twenty dollars was paid. I was livid! When my husband returned, he asked if I had authorized AT&T to do an electronic check and I told him no. We went online to www.electronic-check.org and found out that no company can turn your paper check into an electronic check unless you authorize it. Which I didn't!!
My husband called them back and the cs and resolution specialists were very nasty and we got three conflicting stories. The first rep told me that they process ALL of their customers checks electronically ALL THE TIME, the second rep, said "oh no, your bank made a mistake", they processed it the normal way which is a lie, because if they did then my bank would have enforced the stop payment. The third rep said that this a process they JUST started doing within this last month. The resolution specialist refused to give us the supervisors name and hung up on my husband. This is very serious business.
According to what I have read, AT&T performed an illegal and a definitely unethical act by doing this. I need your help to find out who the top dog of AT&T wireless is and all the channels I need to go through. They refuse to refund us the $20 "return check fee" and will not cooperate at all. Please send any info you may have to **. Thank you.
BANGOR, PENNSYLVANIA -- On several occasions I have tried to contact your company, via the telephone and email, to straighten out the billing on the above referenced telephone number and each attempt was unsuccessful. I find it very disturbing that one of the leaders in telecommunications could not resolve a problem over the phone or email and was told by your representatives that I need to write a letter.
In July of this year I was contacted by one of your representatives to switch to AT&T as my long distance carrier. Your representative told me you had a one-rate plan that would cost $24.95 a month. After insisting with your representative that I would not be eligible for that plan he told me that I would as long as AT&T billed be separately from Common Wealth (the local carrier). The following day, I called Common Wealth, they informed that I would be eligible for that plan as long as AT&T billed me separately. Your representative called me a couple of days later and said in order for me to switch and get the one-rate play, I had to contact Common Wealth.
While on the phone with your representative, he patched us through to a Common Wealth representative. Once again, I asked the same questions to insure that I was eligible for your one-rate plan. Upon the arrival of my monthly Common Wealth bill, AT&T did not bill me separately, nor was I charged the one-rate both of which I was assured of by your representative. It is from this point that this entire fiasco began.
I immediately called your company and explained the situation, I was told they could not resolve the problem. They had no idea what I was talking about. To aggravate the situation, I was told that I was not listed on your system as an AT&T customer. It was suggested that I to write a letter to one of your offices in Florida. Write a letter, now if you set me up as a customer over the phone, how is it that you can not resolve a problem (you created) over the phone? That does not sound to me like one of the leaders in telecommunications, nor does it sound like reputable company.
I called again and again was told that they could not help me, but that she would patch me through to someone who could. After over a half an hour of waiting the phone was disconnected. I called again and at least this time (after a half an hour of waiting) I was connected to someone else. However, that person could not help me either, he told me that I would have to contact a person during the day at this number (800) 225-5282. Once again, your company contacts me in the evening to do business, but I can only resolve an issue with someone during the day? I am in construction and I do not have access to a phone during the day.
Hoping calling this number would resolve this entire issue, I inconvenienced someone else to help me out. Unfortunately when this person called, the number is area specific and they could reach someone. However, they did call you 800 number listed on your website and spoke you one of your representatives. Even your representative could not get in touch with someone from that number because it was area specific.
That representative informed her that I was in fact listed as an AT&T customer (finally some bit of validation) and that I was signed up for a $.07 a minute plan on July 17, 2003 with a monthly charge of $4.95 plus connectivity charges.
Now, "can you explain to me how I agreed, only agreed to a one-rate plan with a cost of $24.95 a month but was signed up for a $.07 a minute plan". I would have never agreed to a $.07 a minute plan with a $4.95 monthly charge when I was only paying $.05 a minute with no monthly charge. No one for that matter would switch long distance companies to pay a higher rate. The minute your representative found out that I would not be eligible for the one-rate plan he should have called back and not just sign me up for another plan, that I never agreed to. Your representative only had the authority to sign me up for the plan I agreed to.
I am very upset with AT&T and this entire situation. I would greatly appreciate if someone from your company would address and resolve this situation. I will not pay AT&T for more than I agreed to pay, which is the $24.95 a month. Currently I have an absolutely ridiculous high long distance bill. I expect that my account, for the months I was with AT&T, will be adjusted according to the plan I agreed to, once I receive the adjusted billing statement I will gladly pay.
Common Wealth has shut off my long distance and I can't even switch to another company. How am I supposed to clear this matter when you won't respond to any of my email or phone/fax efforts? Thank you for you time and attention to this matter.
I don't think I could be more upset with my experience at AT&T Long Distance USA. Just for the record, here's my telephone information: **. Please be advised that I am forwarding a copy of this letter to the Florida Attorney General. I am also having it placed on a public website where millions of potential customers may see it.
I have received numerous telemarketing calls from various At&T representatives. They are calling for the prior resident and will not stop calling me. I have given them my information and requested that they stop but the calls continue. We are a military family living on MacDill AFB, FL, I would think that At&T would treat service members families a little bit better than this. I have explained to them that this is base housing and that once the prior resident is gone there isn't much I can do to contact them to tell them to get taken off the call list. In fact I shouldn't even have to think about that as it is not my job.
This morning (4-15-02) I received yet another call and again attempted to explain to the caller that I was not interested. That they are calling for a person who no longer lives here seems to make little difference. When I would not let her go through her script or give my personal information yet again to a company who is harassing me the woman on the phone told me that she was going to "put me ** down to be called every second of everyday from now on" and hung up on me.
I have contacted the Florida Department of Agriculture who handles consumer issues and filed a complaint. I have requested the forms to put my phone number on a nationwide do not call list. Also I have called AT&T at 212-387-5400 and again requested to be placed on a do not call list. The associate I spoke with assured me that this would take place within 24-48 hours. This remains to be seen.
Given the nature of this problem, I'll make sure that I NEVER use AT&T for any telephone service. I'll pay for a cell-phone before I use your company, even for local service. And I'll definitely tell other people about my negative experience so they can avoid it in the future. It is truly sad that your company alienates potential customers by attempting to browbeat them into signing up for a service that they do not want or need.
Here's what I'd like to see happen: Remove my phone number from the telemarketing systems immediately per my conversation with your representative.I have been informed that this will take effect within 48 hours and I expect no further calls after Wednesday. No more calls. Period. An apology for the rudeness of the person representing AT&T would be nice too and, in fact, is expected. I hope you get back to me soon. I simple e-mail response would take maybe 10 minutes and I expect one within 3 business days or I will write again.
SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA -- I had AT&T internet service at my old address and the speed was fair. I moved to a new address and it took them 2 weeks just to get my service running and the speed is poor. I called to upgrade service. It has been a week and no upgrade. I have been on the phone at least one time a day and sometimes 3 or 4 times a day with no luck.
ANN ARBOR, MICHIGAN -- I tried to get the month of January 2008's itemized local phone calls from my land line/internet carrier, AT&T. I called and was told that "Michigan State Law" prohibited them from releasing that information WITHOUT a court ordered subpoena. I thought "This is odd", as I am able to readily access my "Sprint" cell phone calls records for up to several months worth... I asked to speak to a manager and was told the same thing.
Today, March 30th, I called the Michigan Attorney General's office and they, in turn, passed me on to the State of Michigan Consumer's Commission. I spoke with an agent there, and explained my dilemma. She called AT&T's rep and we had a three way phone conversation. What a surprise that was. She, the agent, agreed that there was no State Law regarding that practice, THAT IT WAS AT&T's practice.
They do this because they have so many customers and local calls are not kept track of like long distance calls are (we have unlimited long distance and those calls DO appear on each monthly bill). I asked "Why not charge a fee instead of making people have to go through the court system in order to get their own phone records?" Her reply, "we just don't do it and have no department to handle this".
So, I called the AT&T subpoena number 1-800-291-4952 and spoke with a really rude woman there. I explained to her what had transpired and asked "How does one get a subpoena to get one's itemized phone calls?" She blew up at me and stated the ONLY reason AT&T does asks for a subpoena is because of State Law. I corrected her and I was basically "Hung up" on.
I again, Called the Michigan Consumer agent, told her what transpired. She said, she'd pursue this issue, but if I was brave enough, to re-call that number and SPECIFICALLY ASK for the Michigan Law. I did and was passed on to a supervisor who not only agreed with me, but stated it all came down to dollars and sense and that according to AT&T my phone calls are "Not mine", but AT&T's property.
She explained the reason "Sprint" has ready available history of phone records is that they charge by the minute. So, consumers BEWARE.. Be VERY aware. If you think your phone records are accessible, I'd double check your carrier's policy CAREFULLY before decide to stay with them... You may need them, as I did...