ATT early term fee

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by BLOND37, Dec 5, 2011.

  1. BLOND37 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2008
    #1
    ok forgive me for posting this here.. i am banned from posting on att forums and this vaguely includes a 4s aspect so here i am LOL..

    had a 4s active with my primary att number.
    got a 2nd line and the samsung gs2.
    this put me on the family plan, ok fine..
    after 2 days canceled the second line... (went back to 1 primary line)..
    i was told at the store that i returned the sgs2 to that i would not have to pay the early term fee..

    i get my bill this month and there's a $395 charge listed under "other"...

    ETF???? but what else would it be? hmm...

    thoughts comments questions? ADVICE? ugh obviously at some point i'll need to call att :(
     
  2. ET iPhone Home macrumors 68040

    ET iPhone Home

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    Location:
    Orange County, California USA
    #2
    I would go to the same store and person that told you that returning the phone would prevent an ETF. He/She can therefore contact billing to reflect the negative amount for that bill. Once that's done, pay the balance on the spot, and get a receipt showing a "0" balance. Your receipt will provide you documentation should this issue later haunt you.
     
  3. BLOND37 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2008
    #3
    ok actually even tho i am contract i prepaid the bill for a year (roughly $1,000).. so there's a $200 credit on the bill but should have been more obviously.. but yea thats a good idea thx
     
  4. thatoneguy82 macrumors 68000

    thatoneguy82

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2008
    Location:
    Beach Cities, CA
    #4
    Early Termination? Really? I don't know where you live, but in California the law states that you have 30 days to change your mind. After that your contract locks you in, so on the 31st day, you'll have to pay the ETF.
     
  5. BLOND37 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2008
    #5
    well what else could it be? $395.. listed under "other"
     
  6. TSX macrumors 68030

    TSX

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2008
    Location:
    Texas
    #6
    Just call and find out, we don't work there so we can't tell you.
     
  7. BLOND37 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2008
    #7
    i emailed att and this was their reply

    Unfortunately, our records do not contain any documentation the the device purchased for the number xxx-xxx-xxxx has been returned. You will need to return to the store where you processed your device to have this issue resolved.
     
  8. vitzr macrumors 68030

    vitzr

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2011
    Location:
    California
    #8
    NOT TRUE.

    It pays to know the details of what you are agreeing to.

    Guessing or assuming is not legally binding, and you have no recourse.

    I did the vary same thing with another model of phone. I added another line to my family plan on AT&T. After 2 days I returned the phone and they waived the ETF as is the practice. HOWEVER you must return the phone within 3 days to be eligible for a refund of the ETF.

    Yes, you may return the PHONE within 30 days for a full refund on the PHONE but you are still OBLIGATED to Pay the ETF.

    At this point coming back to the original post, it's crucial that you pickup the phone and call them.

    A trip to the store is a waste. The policy is the same in the store as it is with customer service. So save a trip and gas.

    Just call AT&T and they will make it right. They are very easy to deal with if you are pleasant.

    I've been with them for 12 years and over 40 phones. I have never had anything less than great service even when the mistake was on my part.

    Good Luck

    Cheers :)
     
  9. Jordan921 macrumors 68040

    Jordan921

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2010
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #9
    Wouldn't it be a good idea to go to the At&t store where you bought it and have them sort it out?
     
  10. vitzr macrumors 68030

    vitzr

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2011
    Location:
    California
    #10
    I just saw this post, (we were posting at the same time)

    Now knowing you've been directed to the store I'd get there ASAP. You don't want to let the three days expire, if they already have then you'll have some negotiating to do.

    Get the manager involved and good luck :)
     
  11. thatoneguy82 macrumors 68000

    thatoneguy82

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2008
    Location:
    Beach Cities, CA
    #11
    Tell the California Senate that they need to change the law then:

    http://www.consumercal.org/article.php?id=224


    It's the law. It was much stricter before. It outlawed ETFs, but that was struck down by ninth circuit.
     
  12. vitzr macrumors 68030

    vitzr

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2011
    Location:
    California
    #12
    Logically you are correct.

    However what many people don't realize is the store does not have final word.

    Yes I know, it doesn't make sense but believe me I've got tons of experience with AT&T.

    They are "three" separate consumer (not to be confused with business) entities. The chain of power in order is:

    1) AT&T the "parent" company. They are the ones at 611 over the phone, with ultimate authority.

    2) AT&T "online" the web store.

    3) AT&T "the stores" which are retail locations. The retail store must call #1 above as they have all control over ones account.


    Edit / Addition

    The store managers have some latitude but rarely use it because it comes out of their bonus if they make an exception.
     
  13. vitzr, Dec 5, 2011
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2011

    vitzr macrumors 68030

    vitzr

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2011
    Location:
    California
    #13
    Sadly, as is the case in most instances, the big corporations know they have the upper hand.

    If you've ever been to court over a big legal case, involving a manufacturer or service provider like AT&T, (I Have) you know that it's the party with the most money/most influential attorney that wins.

    I used to represent (as a technical specialist, not an attorney) a Fortune 500 company in court cases, and we never lost. Reality goes out the window replaced by the "outcome" that is in line with the wishes of the corporation.

    The "little guy" loses in all but the most rare of cases.

    There is _NO_ justice, it's just a fact :)


    Edit:
    To the Mods... sorry for the double post, I got wrapped up in the topic here :)
     
  14. thatoneguy82 macrumors 68000

    thatoneguy82

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2008
    Location:
    Beach Cities, CA
    #14
    Even so, if they think the upper hand, they're still regulated. Much like the department of weights and measures, they are consumer products and they can be reported to California. The Law is the law, doesn't matter who you are. If AT&T wants to do business in CA, then they have follow the law or faces consequences and pay a huge fine of thousands just because they wanted this $395 ETF. :cool:
     
  15. Stealthipad macrumors 68040

    Stealthipad

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2010
    #15
    CALL ATT! They will tell you exactly what the $395 is for!
     
  16. ET iPhone Home macrumors 68040

    ET iPhone Home

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    Location:
    Orange County, California USA
    #16
    So now ATT is telling you that they show no records of the phone being returned. If that is the case, this should be an easy fix. Go back to the store. I'm assuming you did return it, correct? Go to the person that you returned it too and have he/she resolve this issue. Make sure it's logged and you get a receipt confirming your return. You should then contact billing and they should return every dime due you.

    Did they, ATT, give you anything indicating that you did return the iPhone? Usually, big businesses do a good job providing receipts. They usually have all these types of forms. I would have requested one. Do this ASAP while the person at ATT still recognizes you. Otherwise, you may be S.O.L.
     
  17. marksman macrumors 603

    marksman

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2007
    #17
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A334 Safari/7534.48.3)

    Op in none of your posts did you specifically say you returned the phone.

    You returned the phone right? You have the documentation showing you returned it?

    Just seems like an important detail that was potentially skipped on purpose during the telling of events.
     
  18. deeddawg macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2010
    Location:
    US
    #18
    See the line in the OP's OP.

    As mentioned, this should be a trivially easy matter of taking your bill and documentation back to the store to which you returned the phone and having them straighten it out.

    If you did not get any paperwork/documentation when you returned the sg2, then you may be SOL. Hope that didn't happen, as it'd be an expensive way to learn to always get that stuff in writing.
     
  19. ZipZap macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    #19
    It is my understanding that there is no ETF if the phone is returned during its return period.

    If you know something different, please point out the document that indicates differently.

    You do have to pay for your usage before you made the return.
     

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