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Cell Phone Nightmare
Posted by Pdxmom on 01/13/2006
PORTLAND, OREGON -- I have been with QWEST for 8 years. I had my home phone line, a shared cell phone plan with two cell phones, and high speed internet through them.

In August of 2005 I broke my cell phone. I called to buy a new one to replace it. I did NOT want to change anything about my plan, just wanted to simply replace a phone. The representative informed me that I could get a phone for a cheaper price if I extended my contract. I SPECIFICALLY asked if anything would change about my plan, and he assured me that my plan would remain EXACTLY the same. Later, I discovered that this was a total lie and that I was slammed.

When I received the next month's bill I had huge overage charges. I discovered that this was because the representative changed my plan from an older plan (shared loyalty) to a new plan that was more expensive and had fewer minutes, causing me to go way over on my minutes. At that time I spoke with a manger who credited off all the extra charges. She then, supposedly, changed my plan back to the old plan I was on (the one that I expected the contract to continue as).

However, I soon discovered that neither phone in my shared plan now had voicemail. After calling QWEST they told me that my voicemail which had always been free would now be $5.99 per phone per month. After repeated calls they explained that while they were somehow able to "build back" my old plan that I could no longer get voicemail on my cell phones unless I paid these new charges.

I spoke with two different managers about how unfair this was. I wanted my voicemail put back on free, as it always had been. Simply buying a new phone did not give them authorization to change my plan, particularly without notifying me. These two different managers (one named Will and the other's name I forget) promised that they would send a request to the "back billing department" to add the voicemail on for me and then have it credited off every month. They told me that this back billing department would call me by a certain date to let me know what was happening. I received no call.

I called QWEST again and spoke with a manager after the date passed. This manager said he was going to research it and would call me back. Two days later and no call. I called again and spoke with another manager who said he was going to research the problem and call me back in 15 minutes. Three hours later I had still received no call back and had to call QWEST again. This is horrific customer service and completely inexcusable.

Finally, a new manager told me there was nothing he could do to get my voicemail back as I'd always had it without being charged these new fees. I told him I then wanted to deactivate my three services from QWEST (home line, cell phone package, and high speed internet) and to transfer me to deactivation.

I spoke with Tamra in deactivation. She (again) said that she would send a request to the "back billing department" but we would have to wait a few days to get an answer. She claimed there was no way for her to simply CALL the back billing department and straighten out this ridiculous problem over the phone. Tamra said she would call me on Friday to let me know what the final outcome was.

Thankfully, Tamra did call me on Friday, January 13th, but told me that the back billing department was unwilling to complete the request. I told her I was extremely angry, felt lied to, slammed, tricked, etc. I then asked her to deactivate my three QWEST services. She then proceeded to tell me that I would have a $200 deactivation charge for leaving my "contract" early. This is completely unethical, as I NEVER agreed to a contract that changed my plan. I do not feel that this contract was valid, as it was not the contract I agreed to. The QWEST representative slammed me and changed my plan when I agreed to the contract. I was agreeing to the contract if I got to keep my old plan and all its features, including the free voicemail.

I am extremely upset with QWEST and their unethical business practices. Not only did they slam me and trick me into an invalid contract, but now they are charging me $200 to leave a contract I never agreed to in the first place!!! In addition, I feel that I was strung along, as numerous QWEST managers, the back billing department, etc. did not return my calls as promised.

Today (January 13th)I have deactivated my three QWEST services (cell phone, home line, and high speed internet). I am extremely disappointed to have to do this, but feel I have no choice. I would like to at least see some recourse so I am not charged $200 for leaving a fraudulent contract.

I would appreciate if someone would contact me as how to proceed in my complaint with QWEST.


     
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Posted by spiderman2 on 2006-01-14:
You should file a complaint with your state's Public Utility Commission.
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2006-01-14:
Tell them you want a copy with your signature of the new agreement they claim you made,(they won't have one) or that you want a copy of the tape (sometimes they will tell you they are taping an agreement). I have had similar issues with companies in the past, not to your extreme, but I told them that I have all of my converstations with them on tape, and it clearly proves that I did not request any changes and that the rep told me there would be no changes...you would be surprised how fast they can clear the issue up in your favor when they think you have it on tape. Try it, it works every time. I've used this with phone companies who decided to add or change long distance service on me without my approval, and I've used it when NOPEC decided they would voluntarly change my electic power company from mine to theirs.
Posted by Starlord on 2007-05-09:
deleted by poster
Posted by Starlord on 2007-05-09:
We made the mistake of ordering a cell phone from Qwest. When it arrived, I went though the process for activation, only to find it did not work where we live. We never got to make or receive one call. Every time we tried to use it, we got a recorded message stating we were not authorized to use the Alltel network. I called Qwest and asked for an RA number, so I could return the phone. The people on the other end fooled around and kept having me do dumb things that had no effect on the phone, and kept telling me to call back the next day, or in a week. As soon as it had been 30 days since we received the phone, we were informed that the phone now belonged to us, and that our total was $500, counting the phone and the early termination charge. They even threatened to shut off our landline if we did not pay this bill. I told them I would be embarrassed if I was Qwest, and my phone would not work outside the median on Interstate 10, while my Tracfone worked everywhere. We got the bill paid off, and then the Arizona Attorney general conducted an investigation of Qwest for mobile phone fraud. Of course, no one ever told us, so we could not register in time to get a rebate. We finally got even, though. We signed up with an outfit called Transcend Broadband, and have our internet(high speed) and our phone service through TB. We pay a flat fee monthly for our phone service, which allows us to call anywhere in the US or Canada free of charge. It was so much fun to tell Qwest to pull their lines out of our house. Somewhere around here, we still have the world's most expensive paperweight.
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Slamming by Qwest
Posted by on 11/27/2001
BRIDGETON, NEW JERSEY -- As a honest consumer from your state, I felt it was my responsibility to bring to your attention the following incident.

Since October of 2000 my long distance carrier has been Essential with a freeze as the long distance carrier. My last payment to Essential was in September and I had a hard time contacting them to see why I wasn't getting any further bills. Their website stated that it was being reformatted and would be available soon.

On November 23, 2001 my Verizon (in-state carrier) bill arrived stating the amount I owed them as well as $193.99 that I owed Qwest Communications for long distance charges. In communicating with Qwest they informed me that Essential went bankrupt and they were the default billing company and I was a 'casual customer'. With Essential I paid 5.9 cents per minute and with Qwest I paid 16 cents per minutes with a 30 cent per call surcharge and a 3 minute minimum!

I was finally able to speak with someone at Essential who informed me that they had gone bankrupt but on August 8, 2001 a judge made a decision to sell the accounts to United Systems Access, the highest bidder. They would then take over Essential's accounts.

As a resolution, I would like the following:

Unfortunately, I had no idea my long distance carrier had been changed without my consent, which after speaking with a representative at Essential, I believe I was slammed. I continued to make telephone calls at what I believed what 5.9 cents/minutes only to find out after 3 months I owed nearly $200 in long distance charges. I have since cancelled Qwest as my long distance carrier. What I would like done is the rates on the calls I made since August 15 lowered to 5.9 cents per minute. Since I did not authorize Qwest as my long distance carrier and I was not informed of this at any time, I feel I was taken advantage of by a big corporation and slammed. Can you please help me by investigating this situation.

Please feel free to contact me if you would like more details regarding this incident.
     
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Posted by Anonymous on 2001-11-28:
I can't believe companies are still getting away with this!!!! I hope they get shut down!!!
Posted by Anonymous on 2003-11-21:
Since transfering to a new apartment I have had nothing but problems with qwest service and run arounds. To complain they gave me some bogus corportate office that we all know won't do anything except send a nice apologetic letter and sorry. here is the owners address:
Philip Anschutz
555 17th Street, Suite 2400
Denver, CO 80202
Posted by Shawn on 2013-11-01:
I just got a charge on my ATT bill for changinfg my long distance carrier, but I did not authorize any changes to my long distance carrier. When I called AT and T, they said that my account had a note that I changed from my old carrier to Qwest on October 17. My real long distance carrier still lists me as a customer, but doen npot have a record of any calls since Oct 17....Do I need to contact Qwest now, or just wait to see whether they bill me? Will I lose my AT and T local service if I refuse to pay Qwest?
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Qwest Landline Service: Rotting, Stinking Dinosaur
Posted by Alexfr on 09/12/2010
In the town where I live, Qwest is an exclusive provider of landline phone service. This is a dying business and what baffles me is that Qwest itself is doing everything it can to accelerate the process. There are countless stories here and elsewhere on the internet of people leaving them in disgust. Here's mine.

It started innocently enough, when I noticed on my bill: "Give us a call for a free account review. See how much you can save with Qwest." I took the bait and called them. Lo and behold, they tell me indeed I had been paying too much, for features I never used. They promise me my next bill should be lower.

I get the next bill and it is HIGHER than before. I'm puzzled. Maybe it's just because of the transition to the new plan? No, the bill after that is also higher.

I call again. No problem, they tell me, we can fix it all. I get my next bill and -- surprise -- it is higher still!

Over the next several months I call them repeatedly. Every time I'm told, "Ok, there's been a mistake, but we'll fix it all for you. Retroactively." And after every such "fix" my bill continues to increase.

I don't know what to think. Isn’t there someone at this company – one person -- who can actually get it right?! Can the entire company be so utterly incompetent? I refuse to believe it. I call one last time. I get a representative who explains to me that ... it's actually all my fault! It's quite clear to her that 6 months earlier I called Qwest and requested that my bill be increased (!!!), for the same service. So there, she explains, you got what you wanted. Certainly nothing will be changed retroactively.

I'm dumbstruck. "Does it really make sense to you that I would call Qwest for an account review, so that I could pay more for the same service?" -- "That's what you did", is her answer.

Things only get worse from this point on. "Isn't there someone at your company who can help me?" -- "No, sir." -- "Please transfer me to your supervisor" -- "I can't do that. And he won't do anything for you."

After I ask her for the 4th or 5th time, she relents and all of a sudden it is possible to talk to her supervisor. But, there's a trick. They first put me on hold, while behind the scenes she explains to him the situation. As she sees it, of course. When the supervisor at last speaks to me, he begins with the same premise, that the customer is always wrong and needs to be convinced of that. He launches an intense line of questioning: "Why are you calling now, when the change was made many months ago?" -- "Because to date I haven't been able to get your company to fix this." -- "I think you've been happy with this change. My proof: I see that you paid you bills on time." -- "I do pay my bills on time. Always. Are you really suggesting I shouldn't have paid my phone bills for six months??" -- "Our system shows that you requested back in January that we increase your rate!" -- "...??? On what planet do you live where customers call and ask to pay more?!" -- "Some of our customers do that!" -- " ....????..."

Eventually, he says that I've taken too much of his time. To make me go away, he offers me twenty bucks. A one-time credit. This doesn't cover the amount of the overcharges. But that's what His Highness is graciously giving me. Take it or leave it. I tell him that I will be leaving Qwest. He is completely unconcerned with that. I ask him how his company, which sells an old-fashioned landline service, plans to stay in business with this sort of customer treatment, in the age of iPhones, Droids, Google Voice, Skype, Magic Jack, and Vonage. He does not understand why I ask this. We conclude, "Can I help you with anything else?" -- "No, I see that you can't."

I've had it with Qwest. I'm canceling my landline, and I swear that I will never again touch any "product" by this company, be it phone, internet, TV, whatever else. Oh, yeah, and I'm getting myself a brand new Droid cell phone. Something I really should've done 6 months ago.

Update:
#1. After posting this review elsewhere on the internet, I received a letter from Qwest. "Thank you for being a Qwest customer. We appreciate your business and look forward to serving you for many years to come. [...] Contact us today at 1 866.210.4693 for your free account review".

#2. I ordered Droid X. Once it gets here, I'm canceling Qwest. The Droid hasn't shipped yet, because of "exceptionally high demand" for it. Translation: "because we have throngs of people rushing to dump their landline".
     
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Posted by Skye on 2010-09-12:
What reason are they giving you for the bill increases? We recently had an account review, added the star 78 feature, and our bill has gone down about $15.00 a month. Our DSL internet is also through Qwest also. I don't believe landlines are a dying business. Many people, including myself, still have landlines.
Posted by GenuineNerd on 2010-09-12:
I recently switched my landline telephone service and internet back over to AT&T. Landlines are proven to be reliable. When I had Road Runner with Time Warner Cable (and Adelphia high speed internet prior to the TWC takeover), my internet connection has been intermittent, with it going out every few days. I transferred the phone service over, because I wanted everything on one bill. The service got even worse, and my phone and internet were out for hours at a time. I became fed up with TWC when a close friend died, and I was expecting a good number of phone calls and e-mails...when the service went out again. I had technicians over a number of times-they installed a new splitter, and checked all of the connections inside the basement, in my apartment, outside the building, and at the pole on the street. TWC determined that my service problems were at the main line on the street. I contacted AT&T and switched the phone back, and the internet over. Since then, I have had no phone or internet problems. I still have my cable TV service with Time Warner, however.
Posted by Nohandle on 2010-09-12:
Nicely written review. I know nothing about Qwest but do know what it's like to finally get disgusted with a company. I did with my landline company and finally swapped my telephone service over to Comcast. I've always preferred a landline that doesn't go out when when there's no power, but it got beyond ridiculous. No problem with my service but the monthly bill was a time consuming process trying to get it straight.
Posted by Qwest on 2010-09-13:
Hello, Steph from Qwest here,

I'm sorry it's been such a frustrating set of events to try to save some money. I would like to review the situation from start to finish about what we could do to improve your billing situation, and take care of the costs that were generated by the changes. Please email me at talktous@qwest.com with:
1) your billing phone number
2) your billing address

Thank you



Stephanie Lake
Manager, Talk To Qwest Team

"At Qwest your account information is confidential and protected by law, so I need your permission to access the account.”

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Recent Trainee for Qwest
Posted by QuitQwest on 02/10/2008
DES MOINES, IOWA -- I recently worked for Qwest, went through the 5 of the 6 months of training and all these complaints I'm reading are all to common at Qwest.

Hmm, where to start..

Let's start with the actual training. It's 6 weeks in the classroom and while in the classroom we learn of the 20 different computer programs needed to do this job, most of them in Dos like format.. it's a nightmare navigating through them and on most phone calls we access anywhere from at least 3 to 10 of them.. be prepared when calling Qwest, you will be on the phone with the rep for awhile. Also while in the training the trainers focus so much on the sales aspect of the job.. it's all about the almighty dollar at Qwest and we'll get into that a little more later on.

Once done with the classroom training we must pass a test to continue on.. again a lot of the test is testing you on your ability to sell, sell, sell. Next we have 6 weeks of training on the phones. This is where we started losing our class members, at least one a week. We talk to customers and to be honest not one of us really knew what we were doing. It is a hands on job and with so many different computer programs and so many different products Qwest offers no one really knew what they were talking about with the customers either. So during these 6 weeks on the phone we have goals that we MUST meet in order to "graduate" from training.. yes we have to "graduate" and meet these numbers if we want to keep our job. The numbers are ridiculous too.. it depended on how many phone calls we took a day in how high our numbers were. When I quit I had to sell over 600.00 a day while in training.. (I guess I can see why they focused so much on the sales part of the classroom training) I'm sure you can imagine how hard it is to sell something to someone who is already upset having to call in about other billing issues.. and most of the time those issues don't get resolved. It's next to impossible to meet those goals, unless you get a lot of calls that dropped in your lap.

The main reason I quit was because of a number we had to meet that did not allow us to give good customer service.. availability. It's an inbound call center and we had to be available to take incoming phone calls. That means no follow up phone calls or no calling the customer back. It is really hard to give good customer service when you have to worry about your availability every day. Heck, running to the bathroom went against our availability!! It is important to me to go home at the end of the day feeling like I've done a good job and I just wasn't getting that at Qwest.

Now while we're in training our trainers will listen in on our calls from time to time and offer feedback on what we could have done different. Each and every feedback I got was all about how I could have made a sale! What I should have offered that customer and so on. On one call I was talking to a sweet little lady who told me she was 99 years old. All this lady wanted was to change her long distance carrier over to Qwest so that she would receive only one bill every month. My trainer was listening. She came over to me and asked me why I didn't offer to sell her anything. What did she expect me to do? Offer this 99 year old lady a cell phone?? My trainer then informed that once on the floor after I graduate that if my coach were to of listened in on that phone call they would make me call back and offer something.. WTF?? We are required to offer on every single phone call!!! Doesn't matter how upset you are about your bill, doesn't matter if you just want to know your balance, doesn't matter if you are disconnecting your services, it just doesn't matter at Qwest unless it involves $$$$.

In my class of 20 people not one person graduated. The few that did remain come time to graduate hadn't met their numbers and were let go. During my 5 months at Qwest they had hired another 120 people in our office. This was just in our city.. there are Qwest locations all over 14 states. So keep in mind when you call Qwest that it's most likely you are talking to someone in training.. When you call in for quotes on pricing.. call back and get them again. I guarantee you it will be different each time.

Another important thing I want to make people aware of is what is referred to at Qwest as "slamming and cramming" accounts. This is where a customer were to call in about something and the rep "slams" their account with products without the customers knowledge. I can't tell you how many times I dealt with this issue, it was just sickening. In a job that we're required to meet numbers and the reps work on commission you can only imagine how many filthy, dirty reps slammed accounts to meet those numbers or make a dollar themselves. Every time you call into Qwest you are opening your account to them.. you are giving them the access to slam your account with products you don't authorize.. you won't even know it's been done until you get your bill. Then when these people call in about it and state they never authorized this.. nothing can be done. Hope and pray when you call Qwest that you get an honest rep. What a nightmare that is getting a phone call on someone who states their account was slammed and there isn't one damn thing I could do about it.

No one to report it too. Even if there was some place to go and report it too I doubt it would get reported.. remember the reps must worry about their availability and get right to the next phone call.

Oh and when you request to talk to a supervisor the rep isn't lying when they tell you one isn't available. Sure we have our trainers and once out on the floor we get a coach who we can go to but they don't have the authority to do anything the reps can't do. There is no one to take a complaint to right there on the spot. We filled out a ticket and sent it out and let the customer know that a supervisor would contact them in the next 24-48 hours. However, I've seen all these tickets and I can tell you that there is no way Qwest has that many supervisors doing call backs.. don't expect to get called back.

I'm not a bitter disgruntled employee who worked at Qwest..There was just so much about that job I didn't agree with that I had to walk away. I wanted to help so many of the people who called me but there was nothing I could do to help them..It's a customer service job but I'm here to tell you there is nothing customer service about it.

     
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Posted by Diabolical on 2009-09-23:
Wow, incredible. Thank you so much for sharing. I worked for an answering service and I understand your pain.
Posted by DigitalCommando on 2009-09-23:
Diabolical, you should check out this video if you want to see the queen of the answering service world in action.
http://www.flixxy.com/offshore-outsourcing.htm
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Billing Nightmare
Posted by Celless on 11/15/2007
BROOKLYN CENTER, MINNESOTA -- I am writing this letter because my family has been with Qwest for years and to get treated in a manner that is unbecoming of any company. I have never in my life been talked to and not trying to understand what the problem is and how to go about fixing it. First I should tell you what all I have with Qwest:

2 separate LAN lines
Hi-speed internet
2 cell phones
All of this is on one account.

Well my problems started when my bill got high due to a family member was in jail for a period of time and all his calls racked up a high phone bill (not complaining about the bill), the due date to pay the bill was two (2) weeks away and the bill (e-bill) stated that I had to pay $346 on or before that date. Now here is where things start going haywire. I went to make a call on my cell phone (remember this is two (2) weeks before the pay the bill due date) and my call would not go through and there was a message telling me to call Qwest. I called Qwest and got agent that told me that my cell phones were temporarily off (but not completely cutoff) until the bill was paid (now remember this is done two (2) weeks before the bill is due).

Okay so I paid the $346 and made arrangements with the agent to pay the balance $320 in two (2) weeks they stated that that will be just fine, when it was time to pay I went online to see how much exactly I had to pay and much to my surprise the balance showed zero $0.00 With a credit amount of $68.09. At first I was confused and I called my sister and she told me that I need to verify this with Qwest because this happened to her and then her account ended up in collections.

So I called Qwest to find out what happened to my balance and the agent told me that what had happened that a bill that I had paid before was placed on a "ghost bill", I asked what that was and she said it was like a mirror image of the real bill but it has no activity on it. The Qwest agent told that somebody that worked there caught it and applied it to my account which wiped out the remaining balance leaving me with a credit of $68.09. (Woohoo lucky day for me). I asked what do I have to do to get the cell phones turned back on? She said oh she can get them turned back on and she did. Now all this took place in September and in October when I checked my balance it was $42 everything was almost back to normal until November, I went to the Qwest site to check my balance and it was $188 (still not a problem since I was getting ready to pay it) but then I got a bill through the mail which I never had gotten before since I did everything online with Qwest.

I figured it was a statement telling me about the cell phone upgrade that I had just done 1 week ago (11/05/2007). I had called Qwest 11/05/2007 to upgrade my cell phone since I had it for over two (2) years and they also stated that I had to sign a new two (2) year agreement (which I thought was absurd, but I signed it regardless). I opened the Qwest letter and it nearly knocked me out of my seat, it stated that I owed Qwest $663.09 At first I figured that it was that "ghost bill" but I decided to call Qwest to confirm my suspicions and that is when everything hit the fan. I was on the phone all day trying to figure out what was going on, the first agent I talked to (over an hour while I was at work) checked everything and then proceeded to tell me that the bill is correct, I advised her that when I went online last week it said my balance was $188 and then she told me that the bill that I got through the mail was just for the cell phones and that I had not paid the balance of $320 back in September, I let her know that back in sept. I had made arrangements to pay that balance and was told that it was cleared up because of a computer error and she said she does not see that in the notes anywhere, then she told me that someone at Qwest had separated the house phones / internet from the cell phones (something that I had no knowledge of whatsoever).

Then she transferred me this man that stated that he was in the finance dept. And he was very rude, we got into this yelling match and I hung up on him because I was at work. I left work early so that I could go home and bring everything up on my computer but much to my surprise when I went to the Qwest site it said that there was technical difficulties to show my bill. So now I called Qwest back and got another agent who checked everything and he also said that the bill was correct, now I am very frustrated because nobody would listen to what I had to say, they just kept reading what is in front of them.

I am in the telecomm field and I know that it is very necessary to be able to take good notes and to document everything but I also know that it doesn't always happen. After talking to several people throughout the day finally I get a guy that does some serious checking and says that he sees a problem with the bill and then he transfers me to another person just so that he can tell me once again the bill is correct and hangs up. I call Qwest again now it is around 7pm and I am mad that no one has still listened to me, so this time I make this person listen to my questions:

q:how is it possible for a person at Qwest to rearrange how my bill is bundled without consulting me first?
A:i don't know
q:how is that I do not receive any notice of this change?
A:i don't know
q:how is it that you say that my past due bill amount started in sept. Yet I have not been sent a bill until November to the tune of $663.09?
A:i have to transfer you to someone that can help you

so now once again I have to explain to another person the situation, but then he comes on talking like there was some light at the end of this tunnel and he finds a couple of things that will save me money like $8.00 A month because I was being doubled billed for caller id etc...Then he checks deeper and says that this bill has been sent to a collection agency a while ago, I asked how could that be, I just upgraded my phone through Qwest a week ago, the agent said he didn't know how that could be since the cell phones are turned off, then I advised him that I was talking to him on my cell phone and that the cell phones are not turned off, he then said he will call over to credit and collections and see if we can setup a payment plan which I reluctantly agreed to. The agent came back and said the only thing he could do for me is if I pay the $517.37 Right now they can wait on the $145.72.

I advised him that there is no way that I am going to pay that since this mess was not made by me and he agreed that Qwest had made a mistake but in order to clean it up I need to pay $517.37 Right now, that is when I informed him that instead of going all the way around the block he should of just said "pay the bill", I asked him if he thought I was an idiot and that was when he first put me on mute and I asked was he still there and then came back on and said that he can hear me and then there was a lot of laughing in the background and another person said something smart and I asked what did he say and he said "nothing". After he muted me several times and he knew that was irritating me he said there was nothing he could do for me since this is with a collection agency.

Now I also found that I will probably have to pay early disconnect fees for both phones on top of this bill. My phone was completely out of the early disconnect fee before I upgraded 11/05/2007 and my daughters phone would of been out of the early disconnect fee 12/25/2007, because of a Qwest error now I am going to have to deal with a collection agency. Now the final straw hit when I was on my way home last night and proceeded to call my 13 year old daughter to see what time I had to pick her up from church, the cell phones were turned off. I am sending this letter to any and everybody that I feel needs to hear about this and I have already found other people that this has happened too, but they elected to just leave Qwest and go with another provider, as I said earlier that I have been with Qwest for years and never had a problem (sure little ones) but nothing major until this and I think this stemmed from in-house lack of communication and some illegal rearranging of a my bundle without my knowledge and not properly informing me for almost three months of a separate accumulating bill that I had no knowledge of (was still under the assumption that everything was on one bill.

I highly advise Qwest to do the right thing and clean this up. I am in the process of taking legal actions.

     
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Posted by CrystalSword on 2007-11-15:
Now you know why we refuse to deal with Qwest and we have phone service through our computers.
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Lousy Customer service
Posted by Bixter on 09/08/2004
WASHINGTON -- Used Qwest phone service for about 3 yrs and had lousy customer service throughout. Long waits for service were not uncommon. I once had to wait 45 minutes for help. When I asked to speak to a supervisor I was transferred, deliberately I believe, to a Spanish speaking operator.

The straw that broke the camel's back was when I ordered their DSL service. It was not compatible with my home security alarm system so I returned it to Qwest after obtaining a return authorization number. Still I was billed for the modem and DSL service which I refused to pay. After months of their telling me yes they received my returned modem and that I would receive credit for it I am now being billed for the entire amount with my final bill sent to a collection agency. I cannot get a definitive answer from Qwest. I even wrote to the CEO but have not heard back from him either. I am so glad I switched to AT&T.
     
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Billing dispute
Posted by on 03/21/2002
CEDAR FALLS, IOWA -- Herewith I would like to file a complaint regarding the way the department that you direct understands to address customer's inquires and complaints. Here are the facts:

On February 4, 2002, I contacted Qwest's Sales Department twice to inquire about a service that you are offering: CALL FORWARDING BUSY LINE.
Both representatives that I spoke to gave me details about the service, trying to persuade me into ordering it (which was fine). I asked both of them the following question: 'Do I have to pay any other fee (for instance an installation fee) in addition to the $0.30 monthly fee?'. Both answered: 'No, this is a very cheep service!'

I was surprised to see a 'One-time charge for order processing' of $13.00 on the February 19, 2002 statement (see the enclosed copy). I contacted immediately the Customer Service Department and disputed the charge. I was told that somebody would call me to let me know about the result of my dispute. Nobody called me...
Then I called again your department a few times and I spoke with different customer service representatives about my problem. I found out contradictory facts: somebody gave me the name of the sales person who sold me the service, while another customer service representative told me that it was impossible to determine who sold me the service.

I asked to talk to a supervisor and I was given a 1-800 number 'where I can report my complaint' - when I dialed I got a message that the number does not exists...

When I finally got to speak to a supervisor, I was told that there was a communication problem between me and the two sales persons, but I would get a refund within a few days. Today I recieved the new billing statement and I notice that there is no refund.

To help keep me as a potential future customer, I would like the following:

I would like to get a refund for the $13.00 order processing fee.

At the very least I would like a response from your company regarding this incident. Thank you for your time.
     
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FED UP!
Posted by Jess1234 on 07/20/2010
To Whom It May Concern:

I established an account with Qwest/Direct TV when I moved into a new apartment complex in late May 2010. After receiving an installation date and time with Direct TV, the first installer that came to the apartment was over three hours late. He did not call to inform me that he was running late nor did he apologize when he arrived. He in fact seemed quite put off that he was there at all. After installing the box and not performing any diagnostic testing, he informed me that my apartment was not wired for Direct TV and that he did not have the time to address this matter. He then told me to call my apartment complex and have the maintenance department come out and wire the apartment. When speaking with maintenance I was informed that was not their job, but that the apartment was in fact wired for Direct TV and the installer had not correctly hooked up the equipment.

I waited an additional week for another Direct TV subcontractor to come out and he was several hours late as well without a phone call. However he did apologize and was quickly able to set up service. He stated that all three rooms in the apartment were wired for Direct TV and wasn’t sure what the previous subcontractor had problems with.

On July 3, 2010 I had scheduled another Direct TV subcontractor to come install a HD box in the living room and install the basic box in the bedroom. The time frame given was between 9am and 1:30pm. At approximately 2pm I began calling Direct TV to see if the installer was still coming. I then had two hours of calling Direct TV and Qwest and six different phone numbers to try to find an agent that could tell me the status of my appointment. I was told that because it was Saturday they could not find that ticket information and that I would just need to wait at the apartment or call Monday if the installer did not show up. At that time I went to my apartment complex manager and was given a cell phone number for a local Qwest manager. She was able to contact a Direct TV agent and I was assured that someone would call me right back. No one ever called me and it wasn’t until after 6pm that the installer showed up with no explanation or apology.

Now that the installation issues have been resolved I am confronted with any equally frustrating billing issue. Apparently because I only have Direct TV and no other services, I have been told to call Direct TV with any technical issues and to call Qwest with all billing issues. Each time I have called Qwest regarding my account I am told that I need to call Direct TV. When I explain my situation, I am still informed that I need to call Direct TV. It has taken a Direct TV agent to call Qwest and explain my situation twice to even have a Qwest agent agree to look up my account. Each time I give my account number, name, address or phone number, the agents have been unable to find my account. My statement comes from Qwest with all of this information on it and I am perplexed with the multiple conversations I have had, why agents can still not find my account. I have been left on hold several times for so long that I have had to hang up. When I have asked for a manager, one is never available.

I set up bill pay with Bank of America and my first bill of $29.99 showed that it cleared from my account in late June. However, when I received my updated bill, it showed a past due of $29.99. When I called Qwest, I again went through the same procedure of being told to call Direct TV. My bill comes from Qwest; the account number listed on my bill is a Qwest account number, but according to Qwest is incorrect. I have never been given a correct account number. I finally handed this issue over to Bank of America last week and until today have not been able to resolve this issue. Direct TV and Qwest have wasted 3 days of my time and multiple hours on the phone without an apology. Having phone calls last 40 minutes with close to a 25 minutes hold is unacceptable. It took a conference call with my bank today to receive a correct account number and it is the first time I have been advanced to a manager. If I had a choice, I would not continue my contract with your company, however, with my apartment complex, I do not have a choice.

I am sure you can see my frustration. I am an emergency room nurse and work in a call center as well. In fact, we are taught that the customer, whether it is a disgruntled patient or caller, is always right. I know we do not live in a perfect world and that there can be difficulties finding correct or accurate information. I do not feel that I have been treated as a valued customer. I expect Qwest and Direct TV to provide the services I have paid for in a timely and professional fashion and up to this point, I feel both companies have failed miserably. I hope that this is not the service I continue to receive. I would appreciate any feedback or compensation for my time that you might have and I hope to correspond with you in the near future.

     
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Horrible
Posted by AngryMatt on 12/03/2009
ARIZONA -- Absolutely the WORST company I have ever dealt with! I have to contact them EVERY other month because they have screwed up my bill and/or account. I have a package deal and they cannot seem to keep it how I ordered it. It has been changed 4 times now without my approval. AVOID them AT ALL COSTS! A 2 hour phone call to them only fixes it for a month; I guarantee you will be calling them again. I hope this company goes out of business!
     
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Posted by Starlord on 2009-12-04:
Qwest is terrible, agreed. I am still steaming over getting the world's most expensive paper weight. We were forced to pay $500 for a call phone we never got to make or re3ceive one call on. Plus, they threatedned to cut off our service. Qwest uses Arizona to support the other 10 states where they are a monopoly. Thank God for Magic Jack!
Posted by kevinmcc on 2010-01-12:
Please file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau. I have done so because I absolutely believe that Qwest's business practices are dishonest. Maybe if the BBB gets enough of the same complaints, they'll do something on our behalf.
Posted by EthanStyles on 2010-03-06:
I recently left my position as a vendor agent for Qwest Communications. Unemployment would have been a better route for me. I must say, from my perspective, this is an AWFUL company to do business with. As a vendor agent, I collected customers peronal indentifiable inforamtion on customers in my home. Luckily for the customers I dealt with, if anything was written down, it was immediately shredded after the information was used for their account. I cannot say that about the other agents Qwest uses. It seems that in an attempt to gain profit, Qwest saw fit to terminate their employees and instead hired vendor agents both (low paid - no benefits - should have taken unemployment comp) in the US and offshore agents in the Phillipines. Most of the US agents I worked woth made an honest attempt to handle customer relations in a professional manner, but we were for the most part, quite frustrated with the way Qwest does business and their lack of WANTING to provide true customer service. Our training was minimal and it was more hands on and learning by our mistakes. The Phillipine agents were non skilled and difficult to deal with, well beyond the language barrier. Neither of these scenarios are something any customer should have to deal with. It had gotten to the point, with my position, if I had to transfer the call and was transfered to someone offshore, I would simply hang up on that agent and keep trying until I got an agent in the US. Qwest preaches CUSTOMER SERVICE but they are clueless as to what CUSTOMER SERVICE really entails. But I guess when a company sees no worth in their own employees and fires them all and transfers their jobs to vendor agents in order to improve their bottom line, how can you expect them to take wonderful care of their customers? In my opinion, this is simply a BAD COMPANY to do business with. There are other options out there for a YOUR communications needs, companies which provide better service; phone and internet, and also have EMPLOYEES who are there to perform outstanding customer service. Run as quickly as you can to these other companies and lets put an end to the era of this simply awful Qwest Communications! Obviously, they are bleeding from all ends, hiring this cheap incompetant labor force and the end, hopefully, is near. By the way, the next time you call into Qwest and have to give your personal identifiable information, just hope you have an honest agent who will not use or sell your information!
Posted by david_co on 2010-10-22:
The BBB will not help you, here's why: "Following our second notice of the complaint, if the BBB still does not receive a response from the business we will call them as a reminder; four business days from the date of the phone call, if the BBB has still not received a response your complaint will close as unanswered. The BBB serves as intermediary between the consumer and business and does not have any law enforcement authority to force a company to issue the consumers request for resolution. It is voluntary for the company to resolve and address all of your concerns – we are not an enforcement agency. In the event that the matter is not resolved using the BBB Self-Regulatory process, you may wish to speak with an attorney for further guidance."
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Beware ! They keep charging you even when you quit service!
Posted by Dianesarah66 on 10/17/2011
YELM, WASHINGTON -- I had Qwest now called Century Link for 5 years and was never late on payments. In August 2011 I decided to transfer long distance service with my current telephone carrier, Fair Point communications. They offered a decent bundle package for the price so I went with them. I inquired to Ken, the gentleman at Fair Point did I need to call Qwest/Century Link to discontinue service? He replied, NO, you can stay on the line and we can have a 3 way conference. After being on hold, he came back on the line with a lady representative for Qwest/Century Link on the 2nd line. We discussed why I was changing and she asked all the questions they normally do. "Did I want to discontinue service with them? Yes- Did I want it to happen immediately? Yes. Oh and we can't forget before her speaking, the usual recording of This call will be recorded for quality and training purposes. She speaks to the Fair Point communications gentleman Ken, again who was my witness that we indeed cancelled service on that day. The next day, I had to make long distance phone call. Upon dialing, a recording stated I had no long distance to make that call. Obviously Qwest/Century Link disconnected it right away and Fair Point was to start later in the day. However, about 3 weeks later, I received a bill from Qwest/Century link charging me for service AFTER THE DATE I CANCELLED WITH THEM. I had NO LONG DISTANCE, yet now, they were telling me there was no record of me cancelling and my account was still active! How can you have no long distant service from a company -zippo- yet your account is still be active? I was not getting anywhere with Alexis or Anna from that cheating company because they said there was no record of any representative talking to me or the Fair Point Rep Ken.
I called Fair Point up now to see if they would call Century Link, he read the notes and said, yes we spoke with them, wait on the line and we can have another 3 way conference call. They proceeded to tell him the same thing. That "I didn't call" and my account was still active. He spoke with a supervisor--no service there either. Basically Tough luck, I was still paying. Where is my recording I ask? Why don't you use it now? Finally Danielle from Fair Point took over and she called a supervisor, she got the same treatment. So now, Danielle tells me "I'm sorry, I find it hard to believe we didn't get anywhere with them however, we will give you credit for the bill they are charging you when in fact you had no service from them. Fair Point made good on that and I provided a copy of the thieving bill from Century Link. So what is obvious is this, Don't think if another carrier has you on 3 way and you cancel Century Link's service on a conference call, that your account is really inactive. They will keep charging you because YOU DID NOT CALL direct from your phone line. It's a great set up to "Forget or have no record" that the customer cancelled and made that account inactive. It gives Century Link how many more hundreds of thousands of dollars from how many millions of customers? THEY ARE THIEVES AND NOT IMPECCABLE. BEWARE.
     
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Posted by lexophiliac on 2011-10-17:
Kudos to Danielle from Fair Point! Consider singing her praises to her supervisor and Fair Point's corporate office. Your review is a good reminder to request a confirmation number from company CSR's when making any changes in a service, to use as a reference should a tragic comedy of errors such as this occur.
Posted by CenturyLinkHelp on 2011-10-19:
Hello,

I am sorry to hear that you had such and experience, sadly, this is fairly common throughout the industry, but not for the reasons you might think.

Let me begin by explaining that the phone service that CenturyLink (formerly Qwest) provides is regulated as has been the case for many years all the way back to the original Ma-Bell times. As such, there is a very strict protocol when one carrier offers to help you take your services or number to another provider.

This is where the confusion often occurs. Your reference to a conference with Qwset I have to assume was actually not with Qwest, regardless of what was inferred by the new carriesr statements, it was with a “Third Party Verification” group or what we in the business refer to as a TPV group.
I know this due to the questions you stated were asked by the conferenced parties, it is almost verbatim the scripting used by all TPV’s.

Comanies cannot involve the original service provider when changing services that require the TPV process as in your case, it’s against the rules. So, regardless of which way services is moving, from your current provider to another or from that carrier back to us, there is never any involvement with the current provider with the new provider at the retail level as this would be illegal and would be awkward for consumers. It also prevents the original provider from trying to dissuade you from leaving when you have already made your choice to switch.

TPV’s are required whenever you change LD from one carrier or another, or change voice services and take the number to another carrier. This is regulatory law that mandates it be handled this way for all carriers, no exceptions.

This is to protect you (the consumer) from people calling up and slamming or cramming you with services you really never agreed to and prevents the awkward situations mentioned above. Since third party verifiers have no incentive other thatn to verify your switch is indeed requested and wanted by the individual making the switch, they have no reason to do anything other than verify the information is accurate.

In this case Qwest would actually never even be involved except to be contacted by the wholesale group of the company offering the new services with a service order (the new provider is completely responsible for writing the new order and sending the change request to the old provider at the whosale level) to take the number or provide the long distance going forward.

Upon receiving these requests, which are called PON’s (purchase order numbers) we are required by law to verify compliance with the third party and if validated by the third party group, and this is a very important part of what may have happened, only then do we make the change.

If for any reason the TPV had reservations about your responses to the questions about changing LD or porting (moving you number and services) to the new carrier, they can tag it as not valid/falied without any notification to you (they do notify the new service provider so they can contact you and re-do the TPV process or verify that you still agree and have not changed your mind) When you were conferenced, the new provider must, by law, not be on the phone listening or coaching you in any way, this assures it is a genuine request by the consumer to change as agreed to and this prevents coercion, slamming or cramming.

In your case, you stated we actually continued to bill you for long distance services. There’s one of two things that must have happened for this to ocure.

Either the TPV failed the request, in which case the new carriers request to us would be denied as is required or there was something wrong with the request from the other company when the sent the PON to Qwest. It is that cut and dry, there is no grey area here.

The reason for this could be there was a problem with the initial request to us from the new provider, in which case we would send them a request for clarification and proceed according to the process stipulated in the regulatory guidelines (for instance, your last name is spellled Smith and the request came in as Smiith, yes even a typo like that can fail the PON or it is your husbands name and social and you gave your name, etc. Just examples of what may have been).

In very rare instances, a carrier has what is called “bill fall out” in which case everything should have gone smoothly in the transition, but the billing continued do to a programming error that causes the service to remain active in the billing system even though the carrier has done everything correctly and the changes have actually gone through.

All carrriers have remedy for this too, that takes the services off the bill and credits any charges back to the date the order came in from the new provider.

If you would like us to look into this, to see what truly happened and whether you are due a credit or not, we can.

Please email your information to: TalkToUs@CenturyLink.com, include you address that the service was at, the phone number associated with the account, expectations, any names dates or references you have and we will review it and let you know the outcome.

Regards,
Steve@CenturyLinkHelp
Posted by John from Robins, Iowa on 2013-08-21:
Hey Steve at Century Link

I dropped land-line, phone service with Century Link 18 months ago. Out of the blue, they started sending me billing notices for an account I no longer have. Since the end of June, Century Link has been billing me about $48 per month for a phone number that's obviously not in my name if it's in service at all.
You claim that CenturyLink doesn't bill old customers for no reason but that's not true. If your billing department turns me over to a collection agency or damages my credit rating you'll be owing me money to straighten out billing issues caused by CenturyLink.
Posted by Heather on 2013-12-09:
I'm having the same issue. I canceled my service 9 months ago! And was still being billed and they claimed to have no record of me cancing then said they would fix it. We had tried Comcast and didn't like it and said if they could resolve the isse we would like to start new service once this was handled and I just got a collection notice because they are continuing to bill us!!! We don't even have the wiring for their service anymore yet they are claiming they are providing it. Sadly it's them or Comcast and both companies are terrible just this one happens to be dirt cheap in comparison...it would help if during the holiday season I could ever get someone on the line to once again battle to cancel the original service and at this point I am thinking I am going to need to lawyer up. I'm wondering if this is similar?
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