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Comcast Unreturned Equipment Rant

Old 02-19-08, 08:33 AM
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Comcast Unreturned Equipment Rant



I just received a bill from Comcast from an apartment I lived in over two years ago - $150 for "Unreturned digital equipment". I clearly remember handing the equipment over to a Comcast installer in the next place I lived in.

After a half hour with a CSR, I was told that unless I had a workorder / receipt stating it was returned, or unless they magically found the equipment, the charge is mine and it will go to collections if I don't pay. Yes, in retrospect, I should have gotten a receipt stating this.

Regardless, how can they do this? I've googled this and found many similar stories. I still have service with them because in Chicago, AT&T and RCN just aren't options.

Annoyed that I'm probably going to take a credit hit because a Comcast employee either decided to keep the equipment for himself, or because Billing is unable to keep their records in order.

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Old 02-19-08, 08:42 AM
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Well you could try making it not worth their time.

Dispute the charge. Complain to the State Corporation Commission, the Better Business Bureau, your county supervisors. Threaten to cancel their service even if it is a bluff.
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Old 02-19-08, 08:48 AM
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Comcast seem to be terrible with accounts/billing. When I moved from Miami, it took 5 months for me to get my 'credit' of 30 dollars.
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Old 02-19-08, 08:56 AM
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Verizon did the same thing to me 3 months ago. Except it was for $1400 in unreturned equipment... Luckily, my old roommate kept a receipt showing them picked it up. Only then did they back down.

Is there anyway if they take you to collections, that you can sue them in small claims court? I HATE how companies like Comcast, Verizon, Time Warner, etc. do this to customers. I know Verizon FIOS lost a paying customer just for having bad record keeping.
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Old 02-19-08, 09:00 AM
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My biggest concern is them sending it off to a collections agency and having to deal with disputing this with all the credit agencies. Comcast does not seem to realize that my old account at my old address is the same as me, so I'm not too concerned about them holding it over me and threatening to shut my service off. I'd do anything to ditch Comcast, but like I said, there's no other real option.

I've filed a complaint with the City of Chicago and written a letter to Comcast.
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Old 02-19-08, 09:03 AM
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I would annoy the shit out of them. Literally call them everyday and just be a pain in the ass. Fuck 'em.
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Old 02-19-08, 09:56 AM
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They got my girlfriend on something like this too... When she signed up for internet service, she used a third party affiliate to buy a cable modem for $80 or something, which was supposed to be refunded to her. She never got the refund, and later canceled the service when she moved.

A few months later, Comcast tried to bill her for the unreturned cable modem... which she never even received from them, as it was mailed to her by the third party! We still have the stupid thing, which I guess we should mail back, but why, as they should have no record of us having received it. Plus she's out the money that was supposed to be refunded anyway.

Obviously the third party was running some sort of scam, but they are actually a recognized affiliate of Comcast, at least on the web, even though the CSRs have no idea what you are talking about when you tell them that.

Which is why we don't have cable (thank goodness for HD broadcasts and my brother's Slingbox) and we get our internet via some cheapass, slow AT&T DSL plan that at least only costs $23 a month.
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Old 02-19-08, 10:13 AM
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Comcast did that to me ($500+), but I kept the pickup receipt.

Vonage (worst. customer service. ever) also tried something similar. They claimed they mailed me two VoIP modems and tried to charge me twice. I disputed the second charge, and the CSRs in India had no idea what they were doing. It took probably 30 hours of my time, but they eventually dropped the charge.
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Old 03-04-08, 02:19 PM
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So I got a call from the "highest level of escalation" (short of an executive, I presume) that my box did not turn up in their inventory scan. The $150 charge now rests with me. I disputed but it's now essentially my word versus theirs. Even threatening to cancel current internet service (@ $50 /month) did not help.

Ideas on how to fight back? Give up and pay?
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Old 03-04-08, 02:26 PM
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What's the statute of limitations for debt collection in your state?
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Old 03-04-08, 02:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Deftones
What's the statute of limitations for debt collection in your state?
Looks to be 10 for written contracts. Good thought, though.
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Old 03-04-08, 02:36 PM
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I think you just give up and pay. Moral of the story, always get it in writing.

I'm in a situation right now where Sprint charging me for "cancellation" fees on an account when I was told I could cancel without charge. Luckily, I have an email from one of their representatives stating this information. So, I'm getting so fed up with dealing with their run around bullshit tactics, I might just let it go to collections and refute it on my credit report since I have proof.
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Old 03-04-08, 02:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Deftones
I think you just give up and pay. Moral of the story, always get it in writing.

I'm in a situation right now where Sprint charging me for "cancellation" fees on an account when I was told I could cancel without charge. Luckily, I have an email from one of their representatives stating this information. So, I'm getting so fed up with dealing with their run around bullshit tactics, I might just let it go to collections and refute it on my credit report since I have proof.
Ironically, I was on the phone with Sprint as I was typing this and they "went to check one more thing." They came back and said "ok, we're going to take off the cancellation fees and adjust your final bill."

So, the moral of the story is most definitely get a receipt so you have something in writing.
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Old 03-04-08, 11:26 PM
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My friend cancelled his Comcast subscription and was told they were going to swing by and pick up the box. He called them up a month after he stopped the service if anyone was coming by to pick up the box and they said eventually someone will come by but no one ever showed up. 4 years later he still has the box and the service but hasn't been billed for anything.
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Old 03-04-08, 11:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Deftones
...So, I'm getting so fed up with dealing with their run around bullshit tactics, I might just let it go to collections and refute it on my credit report since I have proof.
Clark Howard's advice in this situation would be to send them a certified letter stating that the charge is in dispute and that if they place it on any of your credit reports, you will sue them for placing false information on your credit report. And of course, follow through if they do it.

And Sheff, I'd say you are screwed on this one. But you must cancel all service with them, including your internet access - and be sure to tell them why when you cancel it. When you call to cancel, be sure to tell them how much they fucked you over - feel free to embelish the story and tell them that the guy you gave the receiver stole it from you - he told you "I'll take it, don't worry about a receipt, you don't need one". Not quite the truth, but make a stink about it and get a black mark put on the guy's employment record - he did steal $150 from you after all.

For what it's worth Comcast is the cable / internet provider where I live and I have never done business with them. I would rather live with my dialup service than to do business with them. And I'm more than happy with Dish Network.

Last edited by Heat; 03-04-08 at 11:52 PM.
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Old 03-05-08, 12:31 AM
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So I got a call from the "highest level of escalation" (short of an executive, I presume) that my box did not turn up in their inventory scan. The $150 charge now rests with me. I disputed but it's now essentially my word versus theirs. Even threatening to cancel current internet service (@ $50 /month) did not help.
That's Comcastic!
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Old 03-05-08, 07:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Heat
Clark Howard's advice in this situation would be to send them a certified letter stating that the charge is in dispute and that if they place it on any of your credit reports, you will sue them for placing false information on your credit report. And of course, follow through if they do it.

And Sheff, I'd say you are screwed on this one. But you must cancel all service with them, including your internet access - and be sure to tell them why when you cancel it. When you call to cancel, be sure to tell them how much they fucked you over - feel free to embelish the story and tell them that the guy you gave the receiver stole it from you - he told you "I'll take it, don't worry about a receipt, you don't need one". Not quite the truth, but make a stink about it and get a black mark put on the guy's employment record - he did steal $150 from you after all.

For what it's worth Comcast is the cable / internet provider where I live and I have never done business with them. I would rather live with my dialup service than to do business with them. And I'm more than happy with Dish Network.
As much as I'd love to do that, I can't with having to work from home every so often. I got Dish for TV for exactly these reasons, but found out Comcast was the only option short of dial-up for internet.
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Old 03-05-08, 07:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Sheff
So I got a call from the "highest level of escalation" (short of an executive, I presume) that my box did not turn up in their inventory scan. The $150 charge now rests with me. I disputed but it's now essentially my word versus theirs. Even threatening to cancel current internet service (@ $50 /month) did not help.

Ideas on how to fight back? Give up and pay?
sue them and ask the judge to order them to produce the entire inventory history of that cable modem.

or just argue that no one in their right mind keeps these things that long and that two years is an undue burden. comcast should have realized the modem was missing right after you stopped your service
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