Dish Network Complaint - Unauthorized Charge $614.45 From My Credit Card
JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA -- It is with regret I find it necessary to file a dispute with my Credit Card Co. regarding an unauthorized charge in the amount $614.45 to my credit card that was made by Dish Network. Not only was this charge unauthorised I advised ‘Dish Network,’ at the time of our conversation on January 16, 2005 that I decline their service and told them not to place any charges against my Credit Card Company. Let me remind you that at this time no charges had been placed against my account and none should have been necessary, since representatives of Dish Network and myself had never come to agreement. I called Household Bank immediately after declining service with Dish Network and was informed that no charges had been placed to my account and nothing could be done until a charge was made. I called again on January 17th and 18th of 2005 and my account had not been charged. I placed another call on January 20, 2005 and Household bank indicated a charge to my account by Dish Network in the amount of $614.45. When I declined their service on January 16, 2005 I emphatically requested that no charges be placed against my account with Household Bank. I am requesting the unauthorized charges by Dish Network be corrected and that I receive an accurate statement.
In 2001 I acquired service from Dish Network with the understanding this service was to run for one year only and I paid them for that service in advance. In addition I told this company that at the end of the term of our agreement for one year of service I would decide if it were my intention to keep or discontinue their service. My decision was to discontinue service and they were notified of my decision. Consequently several months later I was being inundated with bills from Dish Network for service they had failed to discontinue. I might remind Dish Network I had not authorized, nor signed for continued service with them. I was informed I must pay them $40.45 for service that I had not authorized. When I refused to pay this disputed amount it was turned over to a collection agency and I was further harassed with threatening phone calls.
On January 16, 2005 I made a call to Dish Network and was in the process of discussing a way to obtain HD TV. However, at the outset of our conversation, I informed the representatives of Dish Network that it was not my intention to pay the $40.45 for a mistake they made in 2001. Their representative, Don, agreed to absorb the disputed amount and any new charges that would be applied to my Credit Card would be a direct result of any agreement after negotiation for new service. After speaking with several people at Dish Network I discovered nothing could be further from the truth and they had used, in my opinion, lies and deceptions to obtain my credit card account number with the obvious intention of charging my account for their $40.45 mistake in 2001. It’s also my contention that representatives of Dish Network used what amounts to shameful and shabby tactics that borders on, or is in fact, credit card fraud to make unauthorized charges against my account with Household Bank.
Furthermore, I fail to understand why any reputable Corporation would jeopardize perhaps hundreds of dollars in future business, for such a paltry amount. A charge that I contend was a direct result of their doing. It’s obvious our regulators have ‘lost control’ of this industry. Perhaps a second look at the laws regulating this industry is in order and more protection be set in place to protect the general public. This matter regarding the $40.45 was never a money issue with me, it was based on principle and on principle it shall be resolved.
I would describe this company's sales methods as "inherently abusive." In addition, in my opinion, this company violated Florida State deceptive trade practices laws by charging my credit card without authorization. As a consequence of the above this company has made me a victim of “unfair, fraudulent and deceptive business practices.” It is my intention to lodge a strong complaint with the FTC regarding this matter. Surely Federal and Florida State laws may have been violated in this matter.
I am therefore instructing my credit card company to reverse the entire $614.45 in unauthorized charges made against my account by Dish Network. Please note that I did supply my credit card number to Dish Network but refused their service. Since we never came to agreement I forbade their use of my credit card account. Just because a business has acquired one’s credit card number does not automatically grant them permission to use it. I further contend that Dish Network failed it obligations regarding, “Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act, Fla. Stat. Ch . 501.201 et seq. Dish Network has in effect made my life a nightmare.
In addition in my opinion this outfit failed to live up to the settlement they agreed to in 2003 with 13 states.
Finally, EchoStar is required under the settlement to:
· Implement procedures to protect customers from unauthorized charges on their accounts;
· Provide clearer disclosures of the charges that will be assessed to a customers bank account or credit card account;
· Establish a convenient system for customers to cancel their service; and
· Establish a system for receiving and resolving customer complaints in a prompt manner.
I might add that not one of the above four listed requirements were implemented in my case. It’s obvious that EchoStar’s Dish Network, in my opinion, find it more convenient to pay 5 million in fines and simply ignore customer protection that were agreed upon with the State of Florida, along with twelve other states.