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Correctional Billing Services
Posted by on 10/28/2003
WISCONSIN -- Correctional Billing Services "services" folks who know someone who is in prison. Most of the people who pay for this service have never committed a crime or will ever do so. We are upstanding citizens, we pay taxes and contribute to local charities...just like every other decent citizen. Because we know and care about someone who is in prison or jail though, we are subject to ridiculous, unbelievable prices on phone calls and we are not allowed any choice in who provides this "service" to us. I have never in my life dealt with any customer service people who were so rude, unhelpful, and down right uncaring as these people are. They charge so much for a phone call that many people are forced to not speak to their loved ones at all. This company does not provide a service but rather provides a disservice and they are basically robbing people. I am raising my child while the other parent is in prison, so I do not get child support, the way this is set up I cannot even allow my child to accept calls from their other parent because I simply can not afford it. How hard it is to hear your child cry because they miss a parent and not be able to even allow a 20 minute phone call because I am simply unable to afford it! I realize that the felon is to blame for being there, but does this company have to exploit the misfortunes of people all across this country? And why does our government allow this? Why is it that we don't count as much because we know people in prison? This is just an absolute atrocity!

     
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Posted by Anonymous on 2003-11-06:
I write my loved ones via email from prison, just like the note I'm writing you now. It doesn't cost anything, tax payers pay for it. Just like my food, clothes, healthcare, and everything else around here -- thanks:)
Posted by independant_ladee on 2004-02-19:
Dear I'm writing you from prison.. not every inmate has the opportunity to send emails from prison. As for tax payers paying for everything.. that means your mom, dad, sisters, brothers, aunts, uncles.. these people are taxpayers!
Posted by mat on 2004-03-17:
Correctional Billing Services "services" folks who know someone who is in prison. Most of the people who pay for this service have never committed a crime or will ever do so. We are upstanding citizens, we pay taxes and contribute to local charities...just like every other decent citizen.
ARE YOU INSANE? INMATE COMMUNICATIONS ARE A PRIVILEGE NOT A RIGHT

Posted by babygirl21202 on 2004-05-06:
I AGREE W/YOU WHOLE HEARTEDLY! MY FIANCE IS INCARCERATED AND RIGHT NOW, I AM UNABLE TO SEE HIM. SO, I HAVE NO CHOICE BUT, TO ACCEPT THE CALL!! MY SON KNOWS MY FIANCE AS "DADDY" AND HE CRIES WHEN HE CAN NOT TALK TO HIS DADDY BECAUSE I SIMPLY CAN NOT AFFORD IT!! CBS IS TAKING ADVANTAGE OF ALL THE FAMILIES AND FRIENDS OF INMATES! I KNOW THE INMATE IS THERE BECAUSE OF WRONG DOINGS! I CAN ACCEPT THAT. BUT, WHY DOES CBS NEED TO CHARGE AND ARM AND A LEG...AT THE EXPENSE OF OUR CHILDREN? ESENTIALLY, THAT IS WHAT THEY ARE DOING! I KNOW "WE" CAN REFUSE THE CALL...BUT, JUST TRY AND EXPLAIN TO A CHILD WHY THEY CAN'T TALK TO DADDY!! THIS IS A VERY TRYING TIME FOR OUR FAMILY AND FOR CBS TO ADD TO IT..BY POOR CUSTOMER SERVICE..OUTRAGEOUS FEES...AND CAUSING A LOT OF STRESS..IS JUST PLAIN RIDICULOUS!!!!!
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... all the negative complaints
Posted by Jaxbb on 03/08/2010
I had never had a problem with this company. I've been using them for several years since there is no choice. My son is incarcerated, therefore, I am in the mercy of this company. But either billing through my local phone company for years, or most recently, I've set up a cell phone account, my bills and usage are always correct and accurate!

I like the latter system better. My son can now call me anytime, anywhere and cheaper by $2. It's convenient and portable. I prepay any amount I want, plus $6.95 one-time load fee. My son can call my cell phone anytime, anywhere I'm at until the amount I loaded into the account is gone. At that point, I can re-load money into the account again. To keep from paying too many load fees, start out, say, $100. The more money you load into the account, the less you have to pay the load fee since it is charged each time you load money into the account.

I've talked to their customer service a few times, everyone had been nice and helpful to me. I think people that have problems with them may not have treated them as humans. Don't forget that they are humans too and treat them with respect to get their respect. Talk to them kindly and I bet you'll get what you want.
     
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Posted by jktshff1 on 2010-03-08:
Good post, will wonders ever cease?
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-03-08:
Jkt + 10.

Posted by Skye on 2010-03-08:
One person happy?? Interesting.
Posted by PepperElf on 2010-03-08:
someone who's not blaming the company for the situation either.

++ very helpful
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-03-08:
(VH) I will continue to write letters.
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A Rose by any other name still stinks
Posted by Woodrose on 05/23/2006
JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA -- Well folks, seems that even though Evercom AKA Correctional Billing Services calims that it is not a monopoly which yes is against the FEDERAL LAW several companies that are affiliated with them are Global Tellink,Quest just to name a couple, they have phones in 80 to 95% of the jails and prisons in this country, Ma Bell had about the same numbers and they were busted. For all you folks that have the compassion of Saddam Hussein, be very careful of being so self righteous, but by the grace of God go you, if you have ever driven drunk and yes that means just one drink, gotten a traffic ticket then you too are a law breaker, and when you find yourself sitting there longing to hear a loved ones voice because you killed someone after that cocktail party or hit that child on a bike because you were too busy talking on a cell phone( which is illegal in several states) then you and your family will become victims of this leagalized scam
     
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Posted by tander on 2006-05-24:
First of all I do NOT drive drunk, nor do I drink for that matter, nor would I be on a cell phone and not paying attention to the road. I don't know how people can do that, for me I get confused and turn the wipers on instead of a turn signal..*LOL*
Posted by Hugh_Jorgen on 2006-05-24:
Just because you have a majority of a market does not mean you have a monopoly. It might just be that these prison phone companies charge high rates because their cost of doing business is higher. I wonder how many calls they have to write off as uncollectable because a loved one on the outside doesn't pay their phone bill and skips town?
Posted by bill on 2006-05-24:
I get so mad when people come on here and start crying how inmates are "victims". Victems are the people that those inmates hurt.
Posted by Doc J on 2006-05-24:
Did I miss the brownshirt rally? Unfortunately, convicts can be victims too. Today, 1 out of every 138 Americans sits in a jail cell. We are all but one personal misstep, false accusation, or malicious prosecutor from sharing a cell with woodrose. I would like to know how correctional facilities choose these service providers. Surely, there's no political contributions involved! Considering that beats pounding on some sod because he/she made a personal choice, or not, and ended up in prison.
Posted by Ponie on 2006-05-24:
ONE drink makes you a drunk driver? Hm-m-m.
Posted by Anonymous on 2006-05-24:
Ditto DocJ - Well said.
Posted by Mad Eye Moody on 2006-05-24:
I've been behind the wheel with a martini in one hand,a turkey leg in the other, a cell phone to my ear while driving the Beamer with one knee - it's no biggie. MultiTasking people!
Posted by Anonymous on 2006-05-24:
Doc J - Ditto again DocJ - very Well said.
Posted by Anonymous on 2006-05-24:
Ponie - Yes and it makes mommies mad too.
Posted by firestarter on 2006-08-11:
I have worked with the Texas Prison Workers Union. It would not be hard to spread the word of a boycott through most or even all of the prison systems. What would happen if we all used a pen and paper for a couple of months? Firestarter
Posted by firestarter on 2006-08-11:
Boycott. It would take a bit of time to pull together, but the effects would be felt deep in the pockets of these pirates.
Posted by Des on 2006-09-12:
I completely agree with your posting. Some clearly have not thought through how this is not only oppressive to those incarcerated but also those that are NOT incarcerated. It is shocking that many families are forced to pay extreme telephone rates. This also completely contradicts the philosophy of rehabilitation (when families cannot maintain contact because cost is $2.00 per minute)!!! Disgusting!!
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There is no excuse for the way they do business.
Posted by on 08/20/2003
The only reason I can see that Correctional Billing Service stays in business is that they have a near monopoly on prison phone service. Their charges are outrageous. They cut off service to customers without notification thereby robbing themselves of revenue. I was told that I requested that no notice be given to me when my charges hit their limit - a limit I was never warned existed. It seems like I should remember telling someone that, doesn't it? You may have a six figure income, a million dollars in the bank, and perfect credit, but Correctional Billing Services assumes you are a deadbeat.

     
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Posted by Anonymous on 2003-09-18:
I agree if we requested no notice be given, we should remember that, because who wouldn't have wanted notices given when they're cutting off service when you hit the limit. I was discontinued service not knowing when my limit was hit expecting to receive a collect call, which never came, because I didn't realize service was cut off. I believe their personal policy is "no notice unless special requested" then they say you requested no notice, when in reality, we never had an option from CBS for a notice or not.
Posted by Anonymous on 2003-09-24:
I agree. My phone was line was blocked in July for charges on my account from January that they claimed were not paid. According to my bill July billing statement, my account was up-to-date. CBC stated that the reason for that was that they had changed billing companies. Obviously that is not my problem, my problem is that they block the lines without notification and many times for no reason. Just yesterday, my line was blcoked again. After calling CBC 6 times, being diconnected 3 times, I was finally told that now I must put up a deposit to get it unblocked because of the incident that happened in July, I am not labeled as having a slow payment history!
Whatever, just unblock the line. Obviously they don't have anyone incarcerated or they would realize that those phone lines are the inmates only link to the outside world!
Posted by ITCHE_SCRATCHE on 2003-11-25:
I work for cbs too and I honestly think the customers accepting these calls are the rudest people ever. Over 90% of the customers that call us are calling just to scream at someone. You call us up thinking we have personally gone out of our way to upset you. You dont need to get all hostile because we unluckily answered your call and your line is blkd. If you gave us just 5 mins ti fully explain the situation to you, you might understand the system. Instead you think the reps dont know anything and ask for a supervisor. Well guess what, the reps take calls all day long and know more about whats going on than a supervisor. We can actually do more for you than they can. And calling us names? I mean how childish is that? Are we really still in kindergarden? Some of you people need to take a min and think about what your saying.
Posted by Anonymous on 2004-01-02:
Correctional Billing Services has been harrassing me for about three months now. At first, it was just a message on the answering machine. But when I called back the line would just disconnect. Finally after receiving about six recorded calls at different times over a two month period, I decided I'd had enough. I called and finally got a human being on the other end of the line, and asked what they kept calling my house for. He disregarded my questions, ignored my frustration with cbs and asked if I wanted to be ineligable for correctional calls. I asked repeatedly for his name, supervisor and only received the phrase "sir, you need to lose the attitude". I informed him that I felt justified in my "attitude" since I'm on a no call list, I had never heard of or tried to use Correctional Billing Services and don't appreciate unsolicited sales calls. Since then I keep receiving at least every other day the same harrassing recorded sales message. I guess I'll have to talk to my lawyer.
Posted by Anonymous on 2004-01-06:
hey pcd... i work for cbs.. just to let you know the reason why we call you is to let you know someone from a facility is trying to get a hold of you.. if you dont want us to call why dont you get off teh computer and call our 1-800 number and tell us to stop call.. we dont try to sell anything... thats funny contact your lawyer i dare you... we are fcc approved!!!!!
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StarStarStarEmpty StarEmpty Star
The Show Vegas
Posted by Olson2u on 05/11/2013
CBS just told the Media that they where going to cancel Vegas. I went to CBS on line and had little luck. I am trying to stop the cancellation. Hope you can help.
     
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Who is allowing this company do business?
Posted by Mrs.burton on 02/23/2011
I opened a account with this company about 6 months ago and had nothing but problems with this company. There were problems with the online services, the phone system, the chat option, and I couldn't even use my credit card to make a payment. I had to speak with a supervisor who didn't even resolve my issue I was told to call bill matrix. As a customer why should I have to call your companies processing provider? but I did because as you know if we want to talk to our loved ones we don't have a choice but to use this company, and it is very apparent that that is why there is no help or support for the customers. The processing company said they didn't refuse my payment call cbs back so I call back they say call them or my financial institution I do both nothing is resolved. No one can figure out the problem nor did they try. I closed my account a few months ago because of how frustrated I was with this company. Now I re-opened my account and its even worse. I still can not use my credit card, make a payment online, get through to a human being through your "customer service" number. This is the worst customer service I have ever experienced. There is no empathy or service for that matter from anyone at this company. I would hope they care about their campany and customers, even though we have to use their service every business person knows you don't have a service without customers. I have been hung up on when I was supposed to be transferred. On the chat option they gave me the wrong phone number and then disconnected me. UNBELIEVABLE. This is the only company I can use to talk to my fiance and I haven't talked to him in 5 months because of this company. Worst service ever. I don't understand how this is even legal?. Send all your complaints to the better business bereau.
Courtney J: "Thank you for contacting Securus Correctional Billing Services, my name is Courtney how can I assist you?”
me: I need to make a payment and see if there are any notes on my account?
Courtney J: May I have your area code and telephone number along with your 4 digit numeric passcode please?
me: ########## ####
Courtney J: Thank you, one moment while I access your account.
Courtney J: Your account is clear to accept a payment but you will need to contact your bank as to why your payments are not going through. The attempts show declined by the bank.
Courtney J: Thank you for contacting Securus Correctional Billing Services. I hope we were able to provide you with fast and reliable service today.
Thank you for using InstantService. You may now close this window.
Your session has ended. You may now close this window. I didn't even get to respond this was after waiting 30 mins.
     
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Posted by Anonymous on 2011-02-24:
The BBB is not going to do anything for you. Neither will anyone in the prison system. I think most of the world really don't care how difficult it is to contact your loved one in prison. That's just the way it is. You can contact your States elected officials, but I doubt if they care either. If I say what I really want it will be deleted, so , good luck.
Posted by jktshff1 on 2011-02-24:
No offense, but the people that are in jail are "allowing this company to do business". They are the only reason it exists.
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-02-24:
This is pathetic. You are paying for a service, so they should be as responsive to your problems as any other company would be - maybe even more so since they are the only ones allowed to provide this service in your area. I'd become a pest. Who hired this company? I would call them. Is it your local County Commissioners? The State? This company is accountable to someone, so you should find out who that is and explain to them what your problems are.
Posted by momsey on 2011-02-24:
Good review. It's not right that you're forced to use this company and they can't even provide the service they are paid to provide. It doesn't matter who you're trying to call or why they are where they are.
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-02-24:
If we're gonna allow phone services in the prisons then let the free market take care of it with some competition and not these political payola monopoly deals. It offends me as an American that our government is letting scumbags like Correctional Billing Services to get fat off of exclusive access to state owned and operated assets. Just ain’t right man.
Posted by jktshff1 on 2011-02-24:
While I agree it's not right the way these companies do business, if people did not use them they would go out of business.
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Correctional Billing Services Phone Scam! ( Big Rip Off )
Posted by Roserose on 11/07/2010
INDIANA -- I have been with correctional billing services 4 a little over a year. And I feel as though this company is a BIG RIP OFF! I have had SOOOO many dropped calls 2 where it has stolen my joy of talking with my son through this company! I have called and even begged these people 2 give me my calls back or at-least my money back. but I was told 2 dispute the calls and I will get my money back. well I have did all of what I was Told 2 do and I still NEVER got a dime or my calls back! I have even contacted the Better Business service on them.

But I don't know how 2 go about handling this situation with the BBS. I even told the BBS how correctional billing services tell you if your call is dropped after 1 min and 36 sec. they say that it was a 2 minute call. and anything over a 2 minute call you can't get that call back unless you Fax in a dispute form.

But once you go through all of that faxing and disputing correctional billing services STILL does not grant you back your money or your call. I am so fed up with this company, and I wish that it was another reliable company that I could go through 2 talk 2 my son?

So if there is ANYONE OUT THERE who can help me out with the BBS, and find a new correctional phone company that I can use? Please feel free 2 contact me so that I can handle this matter!!!!
     
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Posted by getoverit on 2010-11-07:
If I understand things correctly, Correctional Billing Services provides phone services to correctional facilities under contract. People don't choose to use their services.

When you say BBS, do you mean the Better Business Bureau (BBB)?

AFAIK, the only thing the BBB can do is publish the number of complaints they receive on a given business, and how many of them were resolved. This is so people can make informed decisions on what companies to do business with. Since the decision to do business with Correctional Billing Services is not by individual consumers, I wouldn't think there's any value to reporting them to the BBB.

If you have correctly filed disputes and they are not responding, I would think your next step would be to escalate your complaint to the correctional service involved.
Posted by leet60 on 2010-11-07:
The joy of talking to your relative was stolen by that person putting themselves in a position in which you have to utilize this company. Save your money and write letters.
Posted by jktshff1 on 2010-11-07:
leet, that has got to be the best answer for a complaint of this type I've seen.
Posted by skelly39 on 2010-11-08:
The OP isn't writing a review about her son. The OP is writing a review of poor service from a company she paid and asking for help.
getoverit-YOU get a BA from me.
Posted by trmn8r on 2010-11-08:
getoverit -> I agree with your reply, and that the BBB is probably not in order here.

Just wanted to add that the BBB also tries to resolve complaints for consumers, not only tabulates them. Some people don't believe in the BBB. Personally, I have had them successfully negotiate results for me with both an accredited company and a nonaccredited one. That's the end of my PSA for the BBB.
Posted by jktshff1 on 2010-11-08:
skelly, I agree, but the op is placing the blame in the wrong place. These companies kickback or have a contract with the particular institution, which in turn, contributes to the upkeep of the incarcerated. +10 for the taxpayer -100 for the people that the incarcerated brought the trouble and expense on to. While I sympathize with the op's plight, I really don't care and I appreciate the $$$ they are returning to the "system". Write them a letter.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-11-08:
roserose, I am sorry for your unfortunate situation. As a consumer just like the rest of us, you are entitled to expect the same value for your dollar as everyone else. This company already has a file open with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). They have a rating of "B-" with 478 complaints filed against them. 352 of those complaints have been resolved, 123 administratively closed, 2 unpursuable, and 1 unresolved. That said, if you were to send your complaint in to them, there is a good chance they will be able to help you get some type of resolution. The parent company is "SECURUS TECHNOLOGIES" based in Dallas. If you Google "Correctional Billing Services" +BBB, you will see more specific information on the types of complaints and resolutions received. Good luck to you.
Posted by getoverit on 2010-11-08:
skelly: what's a BA?
Posted by Starlord on 2010-11-09:
getoverit, BA = Best Answer.
Posted by shellbell33 on 2011-01-22:
I too used to have dropped calls on a daily basis and sometimes it would last for days where they would just disconnect in the middle of a sentence and yeah you can dispute the calls but it can take up to 30 days to even get an answer and most of the time they only give you back a few of the dropped calls stating that not all were prematurely disconnected. It's extremely frustrating to spend money and not be able to have a full conversation and a company not having an easier way of helping when that company has an obvious issue with their phone connection. Thats the issues I have with CBS or Sercurus or whatever they want to be called now.
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Waited 2 Months For Papers
Posted by Systemdoseit on 10/28/2010
P.O.BOX 650757 -- I was last on here. Talking to you about drop calls an when they drop, you still are paying for them you will wee them on your bill but will not see the drop or disconnect error on your bill, i, m just now getting a paper from correctional billing service, to let them know when the phone calls where drop, but the key is this talk to your love one an max how many call he can do, if the drop call never hit you, you, v, been luck, ie, but if the y have, please take the time out an call talk to mr encore or ms christy supervisor an manager I had to call several times so when an if I continue them to court, on small claim, it will be in the books or records. Now to say all this 1# make a list of times of drop calls, time an date.@# When you call an report it ask for id # an name time you talk to them ( us military time ), they go by that real good an the write the 800 or 877 # you you call to an from home or cell,.For example I aloud my husband to call home 7 time in a month, that, s twice a week or how ever he uses it, I t. S to be 7 times at 6.49 For 15 minutes plus a 1$ some odd change more for taxes, huh???? Yes, it is, here the kicker, you get your bill an see all these phone call excepted, but you don, t see the drop calls ,,false! : You do see the drop call, only you are being charged for them, so if they ave to send you a paper as they did me to get my permission to listen to our conversations??????, Just to get accurate, I find that a problem they are not accurate on our bills, you never can get pass mr encore or ms christy but I found a way call bbb an you will get the ceo of this I have information, I will blog it next time sorry it not with me ,, memeber you are still being charged even if the phone is hung up from a drop call time is still ticking

     
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Posted by Anonymous on 2010-10-28:
Thank you! That's one reason I would never use that service.
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Rip off
Posted by Mrs. rrip me off on 10/23/2010
I'm just tired of them saying we have 3rd party call and I don't. The reason they doing it is because they have no competition, the only thing we need is another company THAT will let us prepay at a lower rate AND let us talk without saying we tried to make a 3rd party call
     
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Posted by jktshff1 on 2010-10-23:
#1 click on related and more reviews above
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-10-24:
You can place a third party call block on your line which will prevent callers from billing third party calls to your telephone number. There is usually no charge for these blocks. Contact your local telephone company to place or remove these blocks.
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Call goes "blank" when I try to accept call. PLEASE HELP!
Posted by BJR777 on 10/11/2010
Hi... I am having a problem. When my brother calls me collect, it always shows up as the same number. Well it cut us off on a phone call the other day (it didn't give a message, the call just went blank). After that, he has called but it is showing up as all kinds of different numbers/ area codes. Also, the biggest problem, when he calls me, it will go almost all the way through the recording and once it gets to the point to say "to accept this call, press" IT QUITS It never lets me press anything. It doesn't hang us up, It's like the line goes blank. He called me through someone else and said that on his end it is saying "your call was answered but positive acceptance wasn't received. How do I fix this??? Has this happened to anyone else before?
     
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Posted by jktshff1 on 2010-10-11:
Click on any of the more and related reviews above. You will find interesting advice and many different opinions.
Posted by Skye on 2010-10-11:
Contact your state attorney general's office.
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