Beware of AT&T’s business practices

If you’re an AT&T customer, check your phone bill carefully if you’re moving and transferring your phone number to the new address. Even if you’re moving a couple of blocks away from where you were.

In April of 2007 I moved a few blocks down the street from where I was. Before I moved I received a phone bill with a due date of April 16. Payment was sent in a week before it was due.

Lo and behold, a couple of weeks after I moved I received a new phone bill from AT&T. Someone in their infinite stupidity decided to change the due date from the middle of the month to the first of the month. The bill showed that my charges were past due and there was a late charge on it.

After calling the customer service number and being told that I couldn’t talk to a representative until after the past due bill was paid I finally got to speak to a customer service rep. The customer service rep. tried to tell me that when the bill is due depends on where you live, and that one of her credit card companies did that to her too. Yeah right.

When asked why I wasn’t notified about the sudden change of due dates, I was told that the person probably didn’t know. Obviously someone did. Whoever the genius was that changed it knew about it.

I haven’t checked yet to see if this legally qualifies as deceptive business practices, but I would think that a company as large as AT&T would have better things to do than change due dates just to collect extra money with late fees. After raising hell with the customer service rep. the late fees were waived. Maybe some of the other phone companies are taking some of their business. I don’t know.

I do know that less than a year ago when I moved and transferred the number over no due dates were changed. Last year when I moved, it was only a couple of blocks from where I was before I moved.

I’m not sure yet whether or not it’s worth it to speak with a supervisor. Knowing big business, it’s probably a complete waste of time. It is enough to make me call comcast and switch over to their phone service though.

Just a word of caution: If you’re an AT&T customer and you’re planning on moving and keeping the same phone number you’ve had for 20 years, check your phone bill carefully and see if your due date is suddenly changed. Call them and make sure the late fees are waived if you do.

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4 thoughts on “Beware of AT&T’s business practices

  1. David Goodman

    I hate AT&T because they are so arrogant and try and control everything. Just take a look at what AT&T is trying to do to FreeConference.com.

    Hopefully you are not an AT&T customer and want to give them a dose of their own medicine. Make a long distance call using the AT&T code: 1010288+ 1 and your number. Make it a 2 second call and hang up. AT&T will bill you “via US Mail” $1.49 for the “one minute call”. Every month you get a bill for the $1.49. Someday someone may call you about the unpaid bill and all you need to do is deny any knowledge of the call. I hope 100,000 of my good web buddies make the call!

  2. Jim Vickers

    I am dealing with AT&T now and another instance of what I consider a deceptive business practice. My wife lost her cell phone and so she went to the AT&T store to get a replacement. Unbeknownst to her, the bastards renewed our cell phone contract. We recently switched to a pay as you go cell phone service. AT&T, of course, charges us $175 for “early cancellation” of the contract. We’ve been with them for years now. Bastards.

  3. Janet

    AT&T constantly changes the packages, adds on services we never ordered and finds other ways to secrety screw us! I am on the phone with them every month! I am dropping them asap!

  4. Lynne

    I have had nightmares with overcharges on my business phones with AT&T. We were called by their Business Sales rep and he offered to lower our per line rate and give unlimited longdist. with their Simple Link Enhanced plan. I asked him to send me something in writing b/c I was too busy to absorb what he was telling me on the phone and would read it later. He didn’t even have a web site that I could go to and read about the offered plan or even a brochure to send me…he had to send me his personal AT&T email to describe the plan that he proposed. He never called me back. A few months passed and a different AT&T rep calls about my plan wanting to change it. I find out the first rep is no longer my rep (later I was told by a naive sales rep that AT&T changes the sales reps clients every 12 mo, hmmmm wonder why) This 2nd rep doesn’t have any computer records of what the 1st rep offered me. But thankfully I have that email archived. She asks me to send his email to her to read. A few days later I give her a verbal agreement to change my plan. That’s when the real problems start…my LD chrgs go from .06 cents /min to 56 cents/min. When I start seeing this on my bills and call the 2nd rep, I find out that she is no where to be found. OMG, do you know how hard it was to convince AT&T that I didn’t agree to have my plan changed to have my LD rates go UP! The only thing that helped me to get refunded for those charges was that email. And it still took me a whole year of going round and round with this person then that person/ Even after they chgd me to the new plan I NEVER received in writing what the plan was. But to add insult to injury, during one of my myriad of calls to fix this problem, one of the cust. serv. folk (unknowing to me) chged my local toll calls plan to AT&T (I didn’t even know that my plan wasn’t AT&T at the time) and now for the last 2 mos I have been getting charged 33 cents/min for in-state long distance charges, and before all this started I paid zero for local toll calls. So I am starting all over again. What a bunch of crooks AT&T is. I’m in CA and don’t know who else provides the phone services that I need for my business besides ALL THIEVES & TRICKSTERS a.k.a. AT&T. I can’t use internet phone b/c I have 9 phone lines and 2 are for the elevators’ emergency lines and 2 are for an emergency call system. So if the internet or my computers were to go down, I would be stuck. Any suggestions from anyone. I have to do something, I can’t stand staying in with AT&T and paying them over $400. / month.

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