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The W - Random - Need some advice regarding a utilities billing dispute
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TheBucsFan
TheChiefsFan








Since: 2.1.02

Since last post: 8 hours
Last activity: 8 hours
#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.57
This is a bit of a long story. Here's the short version: My former Internet provider owes me $140 that they refuse to pay me, and I don't know what to do next, because appealing within the company isn't working. Any advice as to who I should contact to try and persuade them? I don't think $140 is worth getting a lawyer over.

Here's the longer version:

I moved away from the city I was living in recently, and canceled my cable/Internet service through Brighthouse. I turned in my cable boxes and router and paid the $37.40 I was told was the balance on my account. Case closed, as far as I'm concerned. But then I woke up one day this week and saw $140, which was my regular monthly bill, automatically debited from my account as if it were still active.

I called Brighthouse expecting it to be a simple matter of returning my money, but it has been anything but. I have been told all of the following:

- They have no record of receiving this $139.75. I faxed a copy of my bank statement showing the transaction, and after they received it I was still told they were working to confirm the transaction.

- The day the transaction went through - after it was already processed - I was told to call my bank and request a stop payment. I explained I was looking right at my bank account and could see it was too late for that, but the person insisted I was wrong and that I could still do it. I explained that, pretending this person knew what they were talking about, doing a cancel payment would cost me $25, and I wasn't interested in paying to fix his company's mistake. He said he didn't know what else to tell me!

- It is my fault for not canceling my automatic debit even after canceling my services.

- Even if they manage to admit they have my money, the best they can do is mail me a check within 30 days. But I'm moving out of the country in two weeks, permanently (or that's the plan), and so wouldn't be able to receive or cash a check by the time they get it to me. Sorry, I'm told, it's all they can do. So time is against me.

- Finally, this morning, I was told the company cannot find any evidence of this money being received and so won't be returning it to me. I was advised to contact my bank, because there must be some mistake on their end, I was told. Even though this is blatantly absurd, I contacted my bank anyway, and was told exactly what you would expect: All they can say is that they show Brighthouse charging that amount of money from my account.

And that's where I sit now. I have no idea what I should do next to get my money back. Anyone have any advice?

Also, fuck Brighthouse. If you live in an area serviced by them and have some alternative, I urge you to take the alternative.

(edited by TheBucsFan on 7.6.13 1145)
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Mike Zeidler
Pepperoni








Since: 27.6.02
From: Champaign, IL

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#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.00
Have you tried their twitter account? I randomly vented at a local hospital's account and had them falling all over me afterward. Also some interactions with Xfinity have paid off.



"Tattoos are the mullets of the aughts." - Mike Naimark


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DJ FrostyFreeze
Knackwurst








Since: 2.1.02
From: Hawthorne, CA

Since last post: 91 days
Last activity: 1 day
#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.58
Read it and weep, fella


    Originally posted by Mike Zeidler
    Have you tried their twitter account? I randomly vented at a local hospital's account and had them falling all over me afterward. Also some interactions with Xfinity have paid off.
OOh, good idea. Even if you're not on Twitter because you're old like me, maybe recruit someone who is to do it for you.

I had a similar issue with a company my daughter was taking gymnastics lessons from through her school. When she started the lessons, I gave them a voided copy of a check and they deducted their monthy fee directly from my account. After a few months, we cancelled the lessons when my daughter switched schools. Not only did they continue to deduct from my account even after the lessons ended, they started taking double! My wife called them several times asking them to stop but they always had a new "technical difficulties" reason why they hadnt stopped yet and kept promising they would refund us. This went on for 4-5 months so I finally called my bank. They told me they would stop allowing the gymnastics company to deduct payments from me, but they wanted $30.00 to cancel the automatic payments and refund me. I told the bank the whole story and how the gymnastics people were essentially stealing from me and I shouldnt have to pay more to get them to stop. The guy on the phone wouldnt budge so I gave him the "broken record" technique and kept repeating how I shouldn't have to pay my bank to make someone stop stealing from me. I got transferred to a supervisor who totally agreed with me. They cancelled the recurring payments AND refunded all the previous payments I shouldn't have been paying too, all for freeeeeee.

Maybe call your bank again and try the "These people stole from me!" angle like I did?



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Zeruel
Thirty Millionth Hit
Moderator








Since: 2.1.02
From: The Silver Spring in the Land of Mary.

Since last post: 13 hours
Last activity: 55 min.
#4 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.55
I would call the bank and ask them to do a charge-back on an unauthorized charge. I've had to do it before. The company has x days to challenge the charge-back and if they do not dispute it, you will get your money back.



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TheBucsFan
TheChiefsFan








Since: 2.1.02

Since last post: 8 hours
Last activity: 8 hours
#5 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.57
    Originally posted by Zeruel
    I would call the bank and ask them to do a charge-back on an unauthorized charge. I've had to do it before. The company has x days to challenge the charge-back and if they do not dispute it, you will get your money back.


I called my bank and they can do exactly that. Thanks for the help guys.
pieman
As young as
he feels








Since: 11.12.01
From: China, Maine

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#6 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.30


Frosty's story is why nobody gets access to my bank account except my wife and me. The local electricity supplier here wanted to stop paper bills, but they wouldn't take credit cards on line. They only wanted direct withdrawal from your checking account. If you insist long enough, they will take credit cards.














Oliver
Scrapple








Since: 20.6.02
From: #YEG

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#7 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.86
    Originally posted by pieman
    Frosty's story is why nobody gets access to my bank account except my wife and me. The local electricity supplier here wanted to stop paper bills, but they wouldn't take credit cards on line. They only wanted direct withdrawal from your checking account. If you insist long enough, they will take credit cards.
This.

Great advice. I quite despise automatic billing, simply because most bills I get aren't always the exact same every month.



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