Billing and collection errors
CHARLESTON,, SOUTH CAROLINA -- Every once in a while you have the pleasure of doing business with a company that is run by a group of people that really know what they are doing. There are procedures and safeguards to ensure that all problems are identified quickly and fixed in a timely manner. All communications are checked for accuracy, the staff is courteous and helpful. Billing is handled efficiently and all the paperwork is designed to ensure that the client is kept fully abreast of any conditions that may affect their experience with the company. Unfortunately, Knology fails on all of the above. We had an inkling that things might be screwy with Knology when our service was interrupted for non payment of a bill. We had no idea that there was a problem with the account and were kind of baffled when the service was interrupted. We asked Knology why there was no phone call to discuss the problem, they hemmed and hawed and finally said they left a message on our 800 number. Folks, let me be the first to tell you, I don't have an 800 number. To make things even more interesting, we had paid the bill over the internet and had a confirmation number. So my wife calls customer service only to be told by the charming cubicle dweller, "Well, sweetheart, you must not have had no money" even after she knew that we had a confirmation number and we had plenty of money in the bank. So, we do get the service reactivated and receive the next month's statement. Lo and behold, there is a $30 fee for the supposed bad check for the payment that we made over the internet. We contacted our bank and they assured us that there was no way that there could hve been a problem with the payment clearing. Knology couldn't care less and if their computer says we owe the money that is it, end of story as far as they are concerned.
So about this time we are a little ticked off and are dealing with some other Knology issue when the salesman from Comcast knocks on our door. Needless to say , we switched to Comcast and I wish I could say that the story clears up here. Nope, things only go from bad to worse. Now in order to swith our existing telephone numbers from Knology to Comcast we have to have a zero account balance. This is taken care of and we are now in the Comcast fold and happy to be rid of Knology. But, we are not truly rid of Knology. Knology decides that we need to pay for a month of service that took place in the August billing cycle. Mind you we dropped the service on May 2nd. But somehow Knology has decreed that we owe for a month of service that took place well after we dropped them. It doesn't matter that we have statements showing a zero balance. It doesn't matter that the new bill clearly shows that the new charges are for services from Aug 1-31. Knology account reps have tried to explain the charges away by saying that they are related to late fees and service charges. I find that hard to believe especially considering that the fees are identical to the fees we were being charged for our monthly services and they are clearly marked as monthly service fees on the bill. What is up with these guys? Now they have turned over our account to a collection agency. When we informed the collection agency about the obvious error we are told that the only thing they can go by is what Knology tells them so pay up or they will damage our credit. The reality of the situation is that my credit is great and have been able to secure low interest loans and credit cards. Nowadays, a ding to your credit score allows the issuing agencies to raise your interst rate to the highest allowed by law. It doesn't have to be a fair and accurate report to trigger the rate increase either. So, the way I see it these folks are in a position to blackmail us with the threat of higher payments on other bills for a long time or fork over the money they say we owe. There ought to be a law against this type of chicanery is all that I can say. Anyone else out there have a similar story to tell? If this problem is widespread perhaps there could be some kind of class action suit brought against this group to make them think twice about pulling this kind of stunt on other people. Watch out for these guys.