To Whom It May Concern:
We have been AT&T customers for ~14 years. During that time, we have ALWAYS paid our bill in-full and on-time. In addition to basic and long distance telephone services, we have been AT&T DSL broadband subscribers for ~5 years and also have had multiple phone cellular plans with the company for several years.
In September of 2006, we moved to a new residence. Following the move we received statements and made payments for the months of September and October. Beginning in November of 2006, we began to receive statements that showed the current charges for the month, but with a balance due of $0.00 and the statement “Do Not Pay.”
We contacted AT&T at least 4 times and explained that we needed to pay them for telephone services. Each time we were told that we did not need to pay. We emphasized the likelihood of a billing error and did not want to incur a large balance at a later date. We were told repeatedly: “We do not know what to tell you…the bill is paid.” The billing statements continued in this manner until August 2007. *We, as consumers made several “good faith” efforts to correct the obvious billing error, but we could only “offer” to pay, not “force” payment upon AT&T.
In September of 2007, we received a statement for $94.45 and the billing statements appeared to have normalized until May 2008.
In a letter dated 05/06/08, we received a Disconnection Notice from AT&T stating that our account was past due in the amount of $1,352.54.
On or about 5/10/08, we contacted AT&T and spoke with Ms. Jones, Billing Manager in your company’s Los Angeles to discuss the aforementioned letter and the continuing colossal balance on our May statement. We advised Ms. Jones that we had never received any correspondence from AT&T regarding the disconnection of our telephone and suddenly received such a letter. After reviewing our account history, she confirmed that there was indeed a billing error and that the letter had been generated automatically despite their determination that a billing error had occurred. She apologized repeatedly and ensured that the error would be resolved by the 2nd billing cycle from that date. She went on to say that our balance was $103.04 at that time.
On 6/10/08, we were taken aback a second time when we received our monthly statement from AT&T. A past due amount of $1,412.18 was indicated, $103.04 of which was defined as the current charge.
We again contacted AT&T Customer Service. We spoke with Erin Holmes ~12:45PST regarding the prodigious balance due on our May statement. Ms. Holmes stated that an additional month was needed for the billing error to be resolved. For our inconvenience, she reduced our charges from $104.58 to $74.39 for the month.
We were irritated/disappointed for a third time when we open our July statement and saw that AT&T was still claiming a past due balance of $1,412.22.
Once again, we contacted AT&T to discuss the enormous balance referenced on the billing statement. During the conversation, we asked to speak to a manager, but was told that no supervisor was available. The AT&T Customer Service representative with whom we did speak assured us once again that the past due balance stated on our account was the result of a billing error and apologized several times for any inconvenience resulting from the billing error. We asked that a Customer Service and/or Billing Department manager contact us later that day and were assured that a supervisor would contact us later in the day. To date, we have not received a follow-up call.
We were absolutely stunned to receive a letter from N. Simone, Manager AT&T California dated July 18, 2008 which stated: “Based upon the findings of our investigation, the charges in the amount of $1,357.40, billed on your May 1, 2008 statement, will remain your responsibility.”
No explanation was provided for the aforementioned statement. We find the lack of an explanation to be unacceptable. We also find it unacceptable for AT&T to adopt a practice of harassing letters at this late date in light of our payment history and our repeated attempts to pay for services.
Thus far, AT&T has displayed little, if any business ethics regarding this matter. It is time that AT&T acknowledges and accepts responsibility for their billing errors. We are willing to meet AT&T halfway, but not more than halfway to correct their billing errors. Additionally, we have lost interest in continuing service with AT&T, but feel that we would not be allowed to close our account as long as there is an outstanding balance due on the account.
Simply stated, we have been a customer in good standing for ~14 years. During that time, AT&T has never experienced even the slightest problem obtaining payment for which your company was entitled.
The amount of time we have had to spend on the telephone with AT&T attempting to resolve their ongoing billing mistakes is unjustifiable. Should AT&T not make an attempt to act in good faith to resolve this matter in a forthright and ethical manner, we will interpret any hostile correspondence and/or actions as harassment on behalf of AT&T.
Mark & Sachiko Davis
Product or Service Mentioned: Att Phone Service.
Monetary Loss: $1.