DirecTV Inc Complaint - Billing Errors And Customer Service
I received DirectTV in my home at 631 Burning Tree Lane on 11/24/2006. I previously had Comcast who changed to Time Warner Cable, and dropped the NFL channel. Since the NFL channel is one of the most watched channels in my home, I decided to switch service from Time Warner Cable to DirectTV. DirectTV advertised on the internet that they provided the NFL channel.
We experienced many technical difficulties after the installation was complete. I received 2 standard receivers and 1 DVR receiver. The television with the DVR receiver could not pick up the NFL station, nor could it pick up some of the youth channels including Disney. The screen would either go black or would read “searching for satellite”. After several calls to technical support, DirectTV decided we had a bad DVR box and replaced it with another one. We then got the NFL channel for approximately 2 ½ hours the next day. After that, the channel went black and read “searching for satellite”. At this time we again started to place calls to technical support, who again attempted to fix the problem over the phone. After more than two weeks worth of phone calls back and forth with technical support, we were told there was nothing more they could do except send another DVR box to replace the second one we received.
We decided that since NFL season was all but over we would just cancel the service. We called the 800 number and cancelled the service due to technical issues and lack of channels promised. During the call made to cancel service, the operator told me we were not going to be charged an early cancellation charge, because of all the technical issues that we had experienced. She also added that if we did receive the charge in the mail on our last bill, we were to call back to the 800 number, explain the situation, and they would have no problem adjusting the bill. More boxes were sent to pick up the equipment via Fedex. We packaged everything up and sent everything back.
On my February 17, 2007 statement, I received an early cancellation fee of $125 and a protection plan cancellation of $10. I made a call to the 800 number as was directed previously, explained the situation, and was reassured that the charges would be reversed, that they had been added only because they did not receive the receivers back in the time for the statement. The operator did state the receivers had since been received, and every thing had been cleared on the billing.
Approximately 10 days after this, I received a letter in the mail from DirectTV that I was past due on my payment. I made another call to the 800 number, where they explained to me that I now owed the early cancellation fee because I was in a contract and I have to pay a fee to get out of the contract early. It was explained to me that the charges for the cancellation had nothing to do with the receivers not being received in the billing cycle. I explained the situation as was directed previously, and was told there was nothing I could do because I opted out of my contract early. I was advised to write a dispute letter to explain the situation and they would decided if I would receive a refund.
On a statement dated March 25, 2007, I received additional charges for not returning 3 standard receivers and 1 DVR receiver. I have no idea where this came from. I had already been told the receivers and DVR had been received, not to mention I never had 3 standard receivers in my possession. Once again I went to the 800 number where I was passed around to 4 different departments who could not help me. I was placed on hold for 38 minutes, then transferred back to the main menu where my call could not be completed. I called back and was told my bill had been sent to a collection company. I called the collection company and was told I had to write a letter explaining my situation and in the mean time, needed to pay my bill. I called back to the 800 number and was eventually sent to the retention department. I spoke to a man there who I later found out made up his name, who told me he would have someone call me back 7-10 business days to talk about the billing issue. I asked if there was anyway to speed up the process, because the collection company informed me this would go to my credit report after 10 days of non-payment. The DirectTV representative informed me that “you wouldn’t be in this situation if you had just paid your bill like you are suppose to:” Dumbfounded, I asked for his name, which he said was spelled [name removed] and asked to be sent to a supervisor. I was placed on hold for 42 minutes, was transferred back to the main menu, where again a recording came on that said my call could not be completed. I called back, asked to speak to a supervisor, got someone who claimed to be a supervisor but wouldn’t share her name, and proceeded to tell me she would handle the matter with the representative I had just spoken to. She said that in order to get the dispute with the bill expedited, she would have to transfer me to the retention department. Again, I was disconnected. I called back, got an operator who said he had no way of getting me back to any of the people I had already explained my situation to, and sent me back through the cycle of departments.
I have yet to speak to anyone who can justify the charges for the DVR and the 3 receivers. I have yet to speak to anyone who can tell me why a representative told me I would not be charged a cancellation fee and noted it on my account, but I’ve still been charged one. I have yet to speak to anyone who is willing to give me their name or any kind of ID number that says they are a legitimate DirectTV representative. I have yet in 6 months to have one representative call me and help me. I have placed every call to your company. I can’t fathom why when I get disconnected, no one can call me back, why I would have to go back to square one and start over with a new representative. I’ve been told by your representatives that they can not call me back if we are disconnected and that I can not be reconnected to a representative I’ve already talked to.