Geeks With Blogs

Scott Kuhl Warning: I may have no idea what I am talking about!

Their HD service does not work, and if you sign up, you are stuck.  It's not the hardware, it's the software, which many people are complaining about, and DirecTV admits is faulty.

I think my complaint letter to the Better Business Bureau sums it up nicely.  Notice how their attitude changes on the final comment.  Even though they told me they would not take back the equipment, they are penalizing me for not sending back the equipment.

Complaint Description

We signed up requesting a HD DVR that worked using their satellite system.  They sold us a Tivo that required an over-the-air antennae which we did not find out until after the install.  (The installer said it would work, but when we called DirecTV they said no.)  DirecTV promised to ship us a new HD DVR when they released 3 months later.  They did not.  We had to pay $200.  The device did not work and failed repeatedly.  We cancelled the service the rep said they would waive the cancellation because of all the problems.  They charged us a $150 cancellation anyway.  We called to complain but they would not waive the charge.

Customer’s Desired Settlement

Refund us the $150 cancellation fee.

Company’s Response

We are sorry for any inconvenience or misunderstanding.  The only way we can waive the early cancellation fee is if you return the equipment to DIRECTV.  If you will return all receivers, access cards, and remote controls to: Jabil Global Services

ICO: DIRECTV Dock #22, 4600 Pleasant Hill Rd., Memphis, TN 38118.  Please be sure to send them via UPS or FedEx so they can be tracked and verification can be made that they have been received.  You may also call DIRECTV at 1-800-531-5000 to order return kits for $20 each, which will include the return shipping label. Once the equipment is received by DIRECTV we will be able to waive the early cancellation fee.

Customer’s Rebuttal

I can not return the equipment.  When I called DirecTV to cancel I tried to return the equipment.  They said I owned it and they would NOT take it back.  Their CSR recommended I sell it to recover some of the cost which I did.  DirecTV is giving me conflicting information with each call in an effort to force me to pay as much money as possible.  I have been lied to repeatedly and this is unacceptible and on the verge of fraud.

Company’s Final Response

We made the offer to allow you to return your equipment through the BBB website as a one-time customer courtesy. Our records show you accepted a commitment to DIRECTV service in return for equipment, and you have broken that commitment. You were offered a significant discount on the price of the HD DVR, which we do show you own. When you experienced problems due to a known software error, we did not find any record that we offered waive the commitment, but we did offer to replace the receiver at no charge. We show you refused the offer. We find the early cancellation fee is valid.

Posted on Wednesday, March 14, 2007 7:25 AM Rants | Back to top


Comments on this post: DirecTV Ripped Me Off

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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You should have just moved up here to Canada where we've been enjoying DirecTV service for free for many years...
:P

D
Left by D'Arcy from Winnipeg on Mar 14, 2007 9:13 AM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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So is that some sort of government program or do you all just steal it?
Left by Scott Kuhl on Mar 14, 2007 9:32 AM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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LOL! Well, you could say it was a government program since it was our gray-area laws that allowed it to go on. Personally I didn't hook up a dish (all legit here), but I had lots of friends that did.

The premise was that there's some law that says if a signal gets beamed to you, you can intercept it. The problem came up when people realized that they could hack the cards and decrypt the signal...but decrypting the signal steps over that boundary, but from a MORAL sense. Because DirecTV never set up shop here, they couldn't prosecute anybody about it because nobody was "stealing" from an organization that was beaming signals to Canada which, under law, people could receive freely.

But that was a few years ago. Since then I think DirecTV changed from a card-system to a hardware-system? Anyway, all the card-encoding side businesses have gone under, but for a while it was definately not something hidden.

D
Left by D'Arcy from Winnipeg on Mar 14, 2007 12:25 PM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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Get this one... I am fighting with Directv too. They really went over the line as far as business ethics with my case. I ordered their service in January as an attempt to save money over the cable company. During the call with their sales dept, I asked repeatedly for the total charges. I was told repeatedly the same charges which did not include a per receiver fee. i remember thinking this was contrary to what had paid with Dish at one time so I asked for verification repeatedly. I did not receive a copy of the service contract prior to the service being installed in my home. The day after the service was installed, I received a call from a customer satisfaction employee. She asked about the installation service then wanted to go over the monthly billing charges. In this call she mentioned monthly service charges per additional receiver. I said wait! this charge was told to me by the sales person. I will not pay these fees! Her reply was sorry sir these charges cannot be removed. i went up the ladder and spoke to supervisors and managers over the next month or 2 to get these charges removed. In the mean time I did not pay that part of my bill. After becoming enfuriated with them I cancelled and they said, well if you cancell now you will have to pay a early termination fee for the remainder of you 2 year contract. WHAT? I did breach the contract first, you did! Too bad sir was basically the response! I eventually terminated anyway because they refused to honor their commitment to me and then last week to top it all off they hit my Visa card with a $400 charge for the cancellation fees and the accumulated charges I had not paid. This was without my authorization and without notifying me. The totally refuse to reverse the charge and I am furious!! NEVER EVER DEAL WITH DIRECTV!! They will rip you off!
Left by Rob Cupp on Aug 10, 2007 3:19 PM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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I feel your pain. We signed up for service and wanted an HD DVR. We were told it would cost $300 and we had to purchase it through the installer. We purchased the DVR and paid for it in two installments on our bill. Well, now that we have cancelled the service, we received a bill in the mail for $470 saying we had to pay for the DVR. So, naturally I called customer service and they informed me that the $300 I paid for the DVR was actually and "upgrade rental" fee! In addition, we paid $11.95/month in rental fees! They are refusing to give us a refund on the $300 and still want us to send the receiver back to them to avoid the $470 penalty.

I have emailed the executive of sales and service listed on directv's website, and have also filed a complaint with the BBB. We have been on the phone with numerous cusomer service people and none have been helpful. Hopefully we can get this fixed. But I warn anyone to NEVER use Directv because they hit you with so many fees that cable will always end up being the better deal.
Left by Baker on Aug 26, 2007 7:01 AM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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I recently switched to Verizon FiOS from DirecTV who I had been with for years. When I got the HD service a year or so ago they charged my over hundred and some for the receiver and then a rental rate. The service went down three times after in stall in a few short months. They came out three times and and caused more problems, once they didn't even put the nuts and bolts back on the dish and I found it one day swinging in the wind. When I tried to cancel my account they informed my there was a couple hundred dollar cancel fee for the HD service AND I had to return the receiver. I told them I NEVER signed any such notice and they said it was on their website. I said I refused to pay and they are sending my collection notices.

I think I will submit a complaint the BBB as well.
Left by brad on Oct 25, 2007 9:45 AM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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Yes, DirecTV did me the same way with cancellation of service. I paid the $300 and they told me also it was a rental fee. I called and was told the agreement was on the website. I did not see or sign an agreement for 2 years of service.
Left by Andy on Nov 03, 2007 9:40 AM

# DirecTV Ripped Me Off - Ongoing (4th month!!!)
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Mee too I am fighting with Directv too. They are really a scum. When I ordered in June - I was told the monthly cost will be 34.70 (Asain Jade world & basic programmin). All the sudden the first invoice comes with 87.90(Over 150% increase!. I called and demanded to speak to the person who sold me the system - They will not transfer me. The are form another department.I requested to return the system (under 21 days),the CSR persuade me to get the cost to 57.40 a month. Since my budget is around $50.00. I agreed. The CSR lower the service fee to 57.40. I paid the bill. Then came the second month invoice- 77.80!! Waht the #!@!. i CANN THEN AGAIN- SAME GRANDMOTHER STORIES- the said the discount has not kick in. OK. The reverse the charges back to 57.80. I insist if the monthly bill for the remainer of the contract is 57.40 the CSR says yes. I asked repeatedly for the total charges. Even worse- the CSR gave me his ID. I call next month- he was never been found.I was told repeatedly the same charges for the remainer of the contract. 3rd invoice -again -$77.80. Now the 4th invoice same amout 77.80!! What the !#$@. I have call them again!!. Each time I have to explain the sh!t over and spent 2 hours talking to someone in asia!! I wonder when this sh!t will end!! I am trying to cancel this account!! let me know if anyone have a solution. I would never ever deal with this people.
NEVER EVER DEAL WITH DIRECTV!! They will rip you off! I should have gone to Dish -I wonder if they are any better?
Left by KyCPoint on Nov 05, 2007 4:42 AM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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First off I want to say I was told I was an A+++ customer, The last rep I talked
to told me I was a quote "reoccurring problem customer" well I guess I can take
my reoccurring $200 dollar a month payment somewhere else. I find that very
offensive. My Husband and I are both Retail store managers and this is not how
you treat your customers.
I Had a HR20-700 HD Plus DVR "Paid full Price" That went bad and directv sent
out a replacement. I put the receiver in their return box with their return
label and dropped it off at FedEx. They Sent a beat up refurbished unit that had
more problems than the first one. I go to call on this unit and find a $400.00
charge on my bill for Non Returned Equipment. I have spent over 10 hours on the
phone with Directv this month with no resolve. They agree they have received
this unit. They agree Directv is in the wrong after researching it for the
$400.00 Charge, But are unable to refund my money because they are not
authorized to refund that large of an amount. So it gets passed on to a special
department, that you cannot TALK TO, AND HAS THE FINAL WORD. I was denied my
refund. Another csr and 2 of her senior managers signed and agreed that directv
was clearly in the wrong and the first escalation had the wrong information.
Somebody can hit a button and a $400.00 charge appears on your bill but directv
cannot fix it. So after a month and 3 refurbished HD DVR's I can finally watch
my Sunday ticket and superfan that I pay over $100.00 for a month alone. OH but
wait I still have a $400.00 wrong charge admitted by directv on my bill that
they can't fix.

Left by Amanda S on Nov 13, 2007 6:58 PM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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After reading all your stories, my family and i are experiencing a similiar thing. Our contract is up in feb of 2008. We decided we wanted HD DVR for a new t.v. Not once were we ever told that when starting a new system that we are comitted to a new 2yr contract. It's such a long story, that i will not get into it. I feel that we are not obligated to this new contract because no one every told us that. I hardly ever use a computer except for email and games. I would never have thought i would have to go to their website everytime i want to change a service. How can they get a way with that kind of business?? The one good thing out of all of this, is now i will research every company or service in the furture. One question, has anyone ever found a way out of this poop??
Left by Eileen M on Dec 02, 2007 5:31 AM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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You guys are missing the point. Don't you remember the terms and conditions that you got in the first bill. Its an end user license agreement. Meaning that by accepting the service, you accept all terms and conditions therein. Even if they change, and even if you aren't aware. Guess it pays to learn to read..... and that's not even the fine print. Idiots.
Left by Bob Ondees on Dec 12, 2007 4:12 PM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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I have a similar story, lets orginize a class action.
Left by Yusuf G on Dec 17, 2007 1:48 PM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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I completely understand that by activating service you then agree to the terms and conditions of their agreement, but that does not excuse their practices to screw their customers out of as much money as possible. I am having similar problems with them and it appears that I have no other avenue but to accept that I have allowed myself to be screwed. I moved out of state and purchsed an HD TV...my first HD endeavor. I called DirecTV to set-up service at my new residence which was a disaster as I tried to go through the "movers connection". When the technician came for the install, he did not have the DVR that I had ordered...only the HD receiver. They had apparently screwed up when entering my order and did not add the DVR. He was kind enough to hook up the receiver so that we could watch TV (mistake #1), and then convinced me that I could save considerable dollars by piggy-backing a regular DVR onto the HD receiver...which I fell for (mistake #2), so under his watchful eye I called DirecTV and ordered a standard DVR. The technician came back in a few days and installed the new DVR and activated it. What he failed to tell me was the hassle I would have to go through to record programs...switching back and forth from HD to standard def. That fact made the DVR all but useless. So I decided to upgrade to the HD DVR making the already activated receiver and DVR no longer needed. Now keep in mind that this was less than two weeks after the orginal install. Now here's where the real rub comes in...they charged me $228.85 for the orginal equipment (two HD receivers + delivery and tax...one HD receiver was for another TV and I am not disputing that), $20.95 for the delivery and handling of the DVR I should have received in the first place, another $20.95 for the delivery and handling of the HD DVR which we upgraded to, yet another $20.95 for delivery and handling (of what, I don't know...I guess because they felt like it) and $299.00 for the HD DVR itself. That's a whopping total of $590.70. I returned the original equipment that I had for less than 2 weeks, as per their requirements, fully expecting a credit. They refuse. They also stated that it says in their agreement that all sales are final upon activation, and I asked him to point that statement out to me in the agreement...and he could not. So he went on to explain that I should know that's how leases work...end of story. I was so frustrated after my conversation with Ryan from the arbitration department that I didn't even bring up the delivery fees. They did offer me $10 off per month for 12 months and tried to play it off as some big gesture on their part, but I went on DirecTV's site and that is the promotion of the month. So in closing...I did contact DISH and they have NO installation charges or up-front fees for equipment. Their monthly fees are lower...so if you have not yet made a decision on who to go with...I would check out DISH...stay away from DirecTV.

I will be filing a complaint with the BBB.
Left by Wendy on Jan 03, 2008 3:00 PM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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I am also having same problem. no one said to me upon presenting the offer there is a 24 month commitment and early cancellation fee. i just spoke to Directv to cancel and they said they will charge me 260.00 to cancel. 45 minutes on phone i am tired and i have had terrible experience with thier service. equipement is big and bulky and they placed in odd place and had to remove and displace it.

I AGREE THERE SHOULD BE CLASS ACTION LAW SUIT. AND THEIR IS A SMART LAWYER OUT THERE HOPE THEY CAN ORGANIZE A LAWSUIT AGAINST DIRECTV FOR RIPPING OFF CUSTOMERS WITHOUT FULLY DISCLOSING NEGATIVES OF ANY OFFERS.
Left by neel on Jan 09, 2008 12:34 PM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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Directv charged my card that they had on file that i used to pay by phone one time. I did not authorize this payment. They tried to explain to me that its on the back of the bill.

Which States:

"For your convenience, we will automatically charge your credit or debit card on file for any bill amount left unpaid, plus any new fees posted to your account and any applicable cancellation and equipment non-return fees if you cancel your Directv service"

I don't understand how this is a binding agreement.
Left by Phil on Jan 10, 2008 8:31 PM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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Hey Rob Cupp, I've got the same situation as you about signing up under one price and then receiving a higher price on the first bill. There respond was pretty much - too bad, if you what a break in price move to a cheaper plan. Fortunately they did not have a credit card to deduct from. I'm with you, they broke the contact by not honoring the first quoted price. It's now in collections and they are as big of jurks about it as it Directv is. I even offered to pay for the month and a half we were on the service. If this ends up in court, I'll be protesting there offices, riding around with a billboard on my truck "DIRECTV RIPPED ME OFF" ask me how. Probably refer them to this website. Oh they're ripped my sister and a friend here as work too.
Left by Steve on Feb 25, 2008 1:39 PM

# Bob Ondees
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This is more about Bob Ondees being a prick (see his post above). Come on, clearly directv has business principles that flirt with being unethical. Until you've had the service for some period of time, how are you to know that you will be dissatisfied? Directv sets up its end-user license so that, by the time you realize you've been given a faulty product, your only two options are to stay the course or pay a ridiculously high penalty to terminate service. Aside from that, their ad and customer attainment practices could be considered "baiting" due to their resistance to disclose actual service fees until the introductory periods have expired.
Their cancellation fees are so high because they are aware that the issues with their receivers are so common that, without a ridiculous penalty, a large portion of customers would choose to discontinue service. Of course, this brings up the question of whether or not they were aware of the problems with these receivers before they were released. And, if they were, could directv be liable in some sort of class action lawsuit? If you could show that these penalties are a way of preventing customer exit from a known faulty product, then maybe.
If directv lures customers into an inescapable contract for a faulty product, then at the very least they are conducting unethical business practices.
Anyway, about the title of this: How does someone attack the consumer when the odds are so completely stacked against him?
Left by casey on Mar 29, 2008 7:39 PM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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Dose anybody know of a phone # to get a hold of Directv from Canada The 800# 800-531-500 dosent work from canada & I need to get customer servises fast
Left by Brian Powell on Mar 31, 2008 10:17 AM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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Directv class action settlement link before...please see if this apply to you.

http://geekswithblogs.net/scottkuhl/archive/2007/03/14/108765.aspx

How do I know if I am a Class Member in this Settlement?

You may be a Class Member and could receive a benefit if you are a person in the United States of America who is a current or former customer of DIRECTV and who, from and including January 1, 1999 through April 29, 2004, purchased DIRECTV satellite television equipment from Prime TV, LLC, applied to Prime TV, LLC for a rebate and were qualified for the rebate but were denied or failed to receive the rebate. Excluded from the Settlement Class are directors, officers, employees, and agents of DIRECTV and its affiliates, and governmental entities.
Left by infuriated!!! on Apr 13, 2008 9:12 PM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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I just posted this somewhere else, but I see this is exactly the same issue:

If there are any law firms out there that want to take this one as a class action, please contact me. Recently, I filed a complaint with BBB about DirecTV's secretive contract disclosures. There are utterly thousands more out there just like me who would sign on to this. In summary, DirecTV binds everyone who gets their service to a two year contract without a signature. This is a unilateral binding and is illegal. When I asked them to provide a copy of a document with my signature they couldn't do it, because according to them, sending you something arbitrary in the mail is good enough. Nonsense. They have no paper trail. Ask any other company with a contract this length and they will send it to you.
Here is DirecTV's response regarding its so called contracts: "We advised you of the commitment at the time the equipment was ordered and when the equipment was activated on 01/06/2007. We also noted the commitment on the order confirmation we mailed to you. The commitment and early cancellation fee are detailed in the Customer Agreement at directv.com/agreements and we sent a copy of the agreement with your first bill. DIRECTV does not require a signature to complete this agreement. New copies were sent any time the agreement changed..." Notice the absence of any bilateral agreement here. You can't just shove something this big down consumer's throats without an agreement.
They don't even keep a record of sending you any of this stuff. This is a slam dunk case in court. How a company this large can get away with this for so long I have no idea. When I signed up with Dish, they give you a carbon copy of a SIGNATURE with whatever it is you agreed or didn't agree to. I never signed anything of the sort with DIRECTV. These guys are toast.

Left by Alex on Apr 24, 2008 11:38 AM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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Another thing, and I know you know where I'm coming from, is that they artificially lower the price of the service the first year, and then push it through the roof the second year, and thereafter. Since you have this 2 year agreement that you never really agreed to and they never really had to disclose it to you in any relevant manner that was documented saying you ever read it or agreed to it, you call up and either reduce your service and pay the same price, or you cancel and they rape you with their cancellation fee. Or the third option: my guess is what most people do is they live with paying the extra 30-40 bucks a month because they don't want to reduce their service or cancel and pay the fee. After a year they forget about it. It's the frog in the boiling water syndrome here. We have got to stand up to this and put an end to it. It is not fair to anyone. If anyone has a law firm they know that would be interested in class action on this, put it up so I can sign up. I don't really care about the money part, I just want DirecTV to pay for this garbage they pull on us. We all know there is plenty of ammunition.
Left by Alex on Apr 24, 2008 11:54 AM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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I am almost afraid to cancel my service agreement. We are moving out of state to a place that will not allow satallite. We only have 3 months left on our contract, but are moving in one month. They told us about a service where we could put our service on hold with no bill for up to 6 months. I am sure this won't be accurate. I think I am just going to pack up the equipment and mail it back to them and pay the $150. I do not want to deal with them. Funny part is the credit card on file was reported stolen a year ago so good luck charging it.
Left by Jana on May 14, 2008 3:03 PM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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We signed up for DTV on 5/13, which took the guy about 5 hours to install. Hubby's idea, I love cable. So on the morning of the 15th, less than 36 hrs into a 24 month commitment, our service is out for upwards of 6 hours. It's raining. How stupid. So I called to cancel and got 5 different responses from 5 different people. First one was really rude and I hung up. Next few told me that since I was within my 36 hr window to cancel, that I would be charged for the little time I had service and I could send the receivers back. Ok. Well I have received 3 bills for 496.95 for early termination fees, which they REFUSE to credit saying that the fees are valid. I am seeking legal action.
Left by Pissed Momma on Jun 27, 2008 5:32 PM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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On behalf of DirecTv, I am hereby authorized to send each and every account that has outstanding balances to CBE for collections. This is my job. Pay your bills on time and in full, and we would not have to do this. Being poor/broke is not an excuss, you ordered the service, you pay the bill.

Scott West
DirecTv
Albany, OR
1-541-926-4635 Field Office
1-360-885-9669 Regional Office
1-541-936-1908 Office
1-800-531-5000 Customer Service
Left by Scott West on Jul 14, 2008 3:59 AM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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I don't know if that last comment is real but if it is, nice comment buddy. Good attitude to take toward customers. I think you just helped prove the point.
Left by Scott Kuhl on Jul 14, 2008 3:53 PM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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We are going through the same nightmare. We had DirecTv for 11 years and originallypurchased the equipment. We never, ever have had a late payment so are good customers. Early in 2007 we upgraded to HD and were charged $150 for the receivers. We just cancelled in May and imagine our surprise when we got a bill for a cancellation fee for not honoring our 2 year commitment. What commitment? We never were told of one, nor signed anything. When we called DirecTv, we were told it was in the Customer Agreement, and they mailed us a copy. We have read it over and over, no where in it is there a 2 year programming commitment. When my husband called today. he was told repeatedly that the 2 years is in the agreement, but the rep could not tell us the specific section. FInally, he said it is in the Addendum. First time we have heard of an Addendum and he will send it to us. The rep emailed us almost immediately with a link to the Customer Agreement...no addendum there either. I guess they figure most folks will roll over and give in, especially since the Arbitration filing fee is more than the cancellation fee. I agree with Alex, wich someoen would take this case on. In the emaintime, we continue to fight.
Left by Dana B on Jul 24, 2008 4:53 PM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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I am going through the same issues as most who have posted. To make a long story short, I was told that since I called to order HD service, I was automatically bound to a 2 year contract and that I "should have" received the agreement. The customer service rep didn't tell me that when I called to order their HD service. They also stated that details about programming commitments and early cancellation fees are included in our advertising and point-of-sale materials. I received nothing from Circuit City when I purchased my HD box nor did I receive a contract or agreement.

I was told that if I want to dispute my bill, I have to send a letter to billing disputes which I have and they stated it would take 14 to 21 days to get back to me. I am tired of going round and round with Directv and they will not get any money from me for something I never agreed upon.
Left by Erika F on Aug 12, 2008 4:31 PM

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I was a long time customer of DirecTv and, until February 2008, was pleased with their service. Then I moved. The installer from Ironwood Communications didn't show up for any of the three scheduled appointments. I cancelled and my service and now they're saying that I owe them an early termination fee. I smell a class-action!
Left by Lana on Aug 18, 2008 5:21 PM

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I moved across the country. So I call Directv to switch my service to my roommates name. They tell me that I can't switch the service. I must send all 5 recievers back. I tell them my roommates want thier service, they tell me they can't change a name on the billing form. So I pack up the recievers and send them off. Surly three weeks later they charge me 460 dollars for no recievers. I call them back and argue that they took money for no reason. When they relize that they are wrong they tell me they'll refund the money. It took 4 weeks to post money in my account. And here's the kicker they only gave me 250 dollars. I call them once again now they tell me that there were PPV charges on the recievers and thats why they shorted me. I tell them I had no home phone line, my recievers couln't purchase PPV. They tell me they can and they download they PPV. HERE I WAS A HAPPY CUSTOMER THAT PAID 300 A MONTH FOR THEIR SERVICE MY ROOMMATES WOULD HAVE CONTINUED THIS SERVICE AND I WOULD HAVE GOTTEN THIER SERVICE LATER. NO LONGER WILL I OR MY ROOMMATES EVER HAVE DIRECTV BECAUSE THEY SUCK. INT WO YEARS I SPENT 6300 DOLLARS WITH DIRECTV LOOKS LIKE I'LL TAKE MY MONEY TO SOMEONE WHO WON'T RIP ME OFF
Left by mark on Sep 04, 2008 2:25 PM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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The letters I just read re-enforced my desire to sue DTV.As a long time customer I am,although not surprised,since murdoch took over these close to fraudalent practices are being used on unsuspecting customers who would rather pay then fight.
I am working closely with my Bank to reverse these UNAUTHORIZED charges for cancellation.In my case $340.
Interesting how these early cancellation charges are not uniform but different depending on customer.
As a certified Conservative Repulican,I am disgusted with Rupert Murdochs deceptive ways of sucking every nickle out of his customers.Unfortunately he and those like him on both sides of the political spectrum give not a DAMN about the hardworking "joe and jane" busting their backs to earn a living and take small joys in their television services...I wish for Mr. Murdoch and his family continued riches on the backs of everyday Americans!!!!
Left by sheilalee on Sep 06, 2008 1:20 PM

# re: DirecTV Ripped Me Off
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My story is similar to yours. We ordered DirecTV and had it for a total of 90 days, then we canceled the service because of the crappy reception and a bill that was way above what we were led to believe it would be, and we sent the receiver back to them. They then promptly went into our checking account and withdrew $600 without our permission, which caused a flood of bounced checks and over $700 in bank charges. Needless to say, we were livid, we had no more money in the house, 3 kids to feed, all of our bills due and 2 weeks till the next payday! It was horrible!

After chatting with various "supervisors" at DTV, I quickly realized that I was getting nowhere and they had no intention whatsoever of returning the money to our account. A few days later I called my bank (Bank of America) and within 24 hours the $600 was returned to my account (the bank did a charge back to DTV) and all of the NSF fees were forgiven. It was a relief! I suggest that if these scumbags try to screw you over, just call your bank and make it clear that you did not know anything about their obscene charges and you did not agree to it.

I am planning to bring this matter to the attention of my Congressman. We all should. These big companies are just out to trample over people. ENOUGH! And by the way, Dish Network is not much better either!
Left by Jim on Oct 08, 2008 1:16 PM

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There is a class action lawsuit in CA for this. I am going through same nightmare in OHIO. Anyone in OH please please lets band together. DTV is wrong. I can't post my story because its to long and to many twists, turns. But I only had service for week 1/2 and am being charged over 500.00.
Left by Kim on Oct 29, 2008 7:55 AM

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I've been fighting them over this for a year now. They charged my CC without my approval and I disputed. Amex ruled the case in my favor. They referred me to one collection agency and when the couldn't get a ruling they liked from them, they bounced me to another agency. Just filed a complaint with the FTC. Anyone going through this should call the FTC at 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357) and file a complaint.
Left by Eddie on Nov 18, 2008 5:22 PM

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Thank you for that phone number Eddie.


Since this is one of the first threads seen when the words 'DirecTV ripoff' are searched, let me see if I can write a very quick summary of what to do if / when 'DTV DirecTV' (as my bank called them) charges any unauthorized amounts to your credit card.



1) There is no need to panic.


2) The first call you will make will be to THE BANK THAT ISSUED YOUR CREDIT CARD. You will dispute the item. When they ask you if you have called DirecTV to try and resolve the dispute, you will say yes. This will only be a temporary 'white' lie, since you have not called them yet, but you will as soon as...

3) The dispute is initiated by your bank. This is official the minute you receive a temporary credit on your credit card due to the matter being under investigation. This will usually take place the morning after you have called to dispute the item. NOW, you will happily call DirecTV... without telling them that you have been credited for the amount they charged to your credit card.

Why do this? Hopefully, you will get treated as nastily as some of the people that have written here have. Except in this case, you will look to write down everything that is said to you, along with names and extension numbers, if at all possible... while having them think that they have the money they charged you, when in fact they do not.


4) Eventually, your bank will mail you a dispute form, where they will ask you to write about the nature of the dispute, plus any attempts that you have made to resolve this matter. Be as detailed as possible in all nastiness / stupidity you had to endure.


5) The process might take a few months, but since you have the funds back in your account, do not worry. Remember that the issue is not whether what you owe is legit or not, it is in the fact that you DID NOT AUTHORIZE this transaction to your credit card. Plain and simple.


You will also remember to include this, either in the body of the letter or as a photocopy, or both:


“For your convenience, we will automatically charge your credit or debit card on file for any bill amount left unpaid, plus any new fees posted to your account, and any applicable cancellation and equipment non-return fees if you cancel your DirecTV service. If we are unable to recover the full balance, we will attempt to recover a portion of monies due. You are still responsible for any unpaid balance.”


That is the 'famous' customer agreement that DirecTV is referring to when they tell you that you agreed to have your card charged for any due amounts after cancellation. You can read it in the back of your DirecTV bill.

The fact of the matter is, as you can happily read above, THERE IS NO SUCH AGREEMENT. They are telling you what they will do, which is not only very different from it being to 'your convenience', it also DOES NOT constitute an authorization on your part for them to do so ;)


How do I know that for sure? My dispute was successful. :)


The funniest thing about this thread, besides the hilariously moronic comment by 'Bill Ondees', is the comment by the DirecTV representative... In a thread where the main complaint is unauthorized credit card charges, the gentleman has the audacity to write this:

"I am hereby authorized to send each and every account that has outstanding balances to CBE for collections."


Wait... why would you need to send accounts to collections if you have the authority to charge credit cards for outstanding balances ??


Guys and gals, while you are in your rooms reading this, look at the door nearest to you, then look at its door knob. Remember that that door knob is about 60 to 70 billion times smarter than 99.999999999999999999% of the people you will be dealing with at DirecTV.


Now, follow the steps outlined here, and, most importantly, have some fun.
Left by felix on Nov 19, 2008 5:33 PM

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I went found a class action lawsuit against DIRECTV and contacted the legal practice below to join the suit. If there is a way to post this information so that everyone can see it on this site, please do so (SEE BELOW).

I discovered the illegal practices of DIRECTV just this week, when they tried to charge me $160.00 early termination fees for an 18 mo contract I never agreed to. They also tried to charge me for viewing porno sites I NEVER ordered. In my research I found an outbreak of the same SCAM in Philadelphia--many people reporting DIRECTV is falsely charging folks for porno that NEVER ordered it:
http://www.consumeraffairs.com/news04/2006/04/directv_porn_bills.html

Did you know 22 states/attorneys generals joined forces in one lawsuit against DIRECTV to stop their corrupt practices? DIRECTV settled.

Did you know the BBB has received 20,000 complaints in just three years?!

Judy Vick

Consider taking action--I contacted the following lawfirm in San Francisco, CA:


Nimish R. Desai
Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein
275 Battery St., 30th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94111
T: 415.956.1000
F: 415.956.1008
ndesai@lchb.com
Left by Judy Vick on Dec 17, 2008 8:10 PM

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Moving to a new apartment where the landlord (hi rise, 300 units) does not allow installing due to safety rules does not deter Directv to still stick me with a cancellation fee of $480.

I explained that i would like to honor the contract but the building does not allow. They still stick me with the cancellation fee. their explanation from the retention department was "it wasn't that we forced you to move to another place". Lovely.

I made a sarcastic deal with them that if they can climb up to my balcony on the 35th floor to install it discreetly, please do so. They did not get the sarcasm(or pretended not to) and was willing to send a technician right away, despite knowing that I will be violating against building rules.

the regular 877 numbers are people who work in their pajamas at home. The retention department are the ones working at the directv office--this they told me themselves in order to rid of any reponsibilities of explaining to why different people give different answers, thus sending you hamstering around.
Left by bora on Jan 13, 2009 5:35 AM

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Has anyone switched to Dish Network? I am going though a simmilar issue with them. I am being chanrged for unreturned equipment. The thing is they installed the satellite on my roof and told me it was my responsibilty to remove it from my roof and return it to them? What, are you kidding me!
Left by Terri on Jan 27, 2009 6:52 PM

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American Satellite co. had solicited my account for them, and I felt that the contract I had was with them. There was no disconnect clause on the ASC contract, and no mention of the 24 month contract requirement. I am guessing from the actions that follow the tech who installed the equipment must have been an employee of ASC.

I never recieved the "Senior Discount" of $22 agreed to with ASC, and when I called DirecTV about being overcharged they told me I had to call THEM to request the discount, and, solly cholly, that discount had expired.

I ddropped DirecTV. The day after I terminated service I got a call from one of DirecTV reps giving me the "opportunity" to reinstate service to avoid the disconnect fee pro rated to $360+ change (never figured where that came from). after I told him he could go climb a rope for his penalty fee the DoDo made the mistake of telling me that even if I refused to pay it, the fee would be deducted from my credit card. After my spouse scraped me off the ceiling and it being late Saturday, we were on the phone the very next day. I canceled the card they were going to charge and sat back waiting for the phone calls.

Now, sportsfans, not only did DirecTV sic CBE on me, they also sic'ed American Satellite on me. American Satellite is coming after me for breach of the 12 month contract they say they have with me to the tune of $499. Eat Dirt and Die guys.

After four phone calls from CBE I sent a Return Reciept Requested, Cease and Desist letter to them. It tickled my soul to hear the girl squirrm on the other end when I requested a mailing address from her so I could send them the C&D letter. She had to check with her superviser to find out if it was ok to give me an adress. Her first thought was that CBE was such an ethical collection agency that they would honor an oral request to knock it off. It crossed in the mail with their DUN, so I fired off a RRR protest letter to them. I also sent off a RRR protest letter to American.

Under the Uniform Code Chapter 41, part B, Section 1631, subparagraph a., it appears these guys done screwed up. If that doesn't apply, there are a few other findings that might.

I'm all for a class action suit. These predatory practices have to stop.
Left by jim on Feb 09, 2009 10:24 PM

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i'm amazed by how many people DTV has screwed over, and am fighting a similar problem. Signed up for DTV over a year ago, and was specifically told it was a 12 month contract, changed to cable a month ago, now DTV is telling me that I have an 18months contract b/c i had a HD receiver, and charge my credit card without my approval for a $220 early cancellation fee. I disputed the charge and the credit card company ruled in my favor, now DTV is sending me collection notices. Furthermore, I used to get a $10 discount thru my AAA membership, DTV discontinued that discount because my 12 month contract was up. I called their collections dept and asked for them to provide my the 18 months contract that I supposedly signed, they said they didnt have it, and pointed me to the agreement on their website. When I told them I will not pay unless they can prove that I signed a 18 month contract, they simply threatened to make notes in my account that I won't pay. DTV will never get another penny from me. I hope we all win our battles..
Left by craig on Feb 25, 2009 6:24 PM

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Direct TV is worst service. Talking to the representative is worst nightmare. IF there is any problem with service they will charge you 50$ for just the technician to come home. The rate that i was offered was not honored. Suddenly my bill was much more than what i was promised. They did not revert the charge.

Please help.
Left by Hanish on Mar 02, 2009 8:31 PM

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About 1 1/2 yrs ago we switched from Dish to DirecTV because the sales rep on the phone offered us a REALLY good deal. I repeated the entire deal back to her and asked "is this correct?" - she said "yes". Our first bill was wrong, but we were assured it was because the credits were not all processed yet. So we went ahead with the service (Our first mistake!) From the next bill on we were charged 4X more than we were quoted. All calls to Customer Service was met with "sorry about your luck" help and by this time we were outside of the time frame to cancel without a fee. I filed a complaint with the BBB, but DirecTV basically said "too bad". Conveniently (for them), there was no record of the conversation I had with their rep at their 1-800 #. Now we are looking to cancel and wondering what we will get into. We paid over $200 for our receiver, but I'm guessing their going to ask for it back. They also raised the programming rates and we are forced to pay the higher prices even though we are supposdly in a mutual 2 year commitment. I WILL NEVER DO BUSINESS WITH DIRECTV AGAIN!!!! Even if that means I don't have television at all. They are quite possibly the most unethical, illegally operating company out there. Unfortunately, they are well aware that the little people like us can't afford attorneys to fight them. If there's a class action lawsuit in IN...sign me up!
Left by Terra on Mar 22, 2009 11:08 AM

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I was unfairly charged early cancellation fees and am willing to join a class action lawsuit. Susan(AT)susancore.com is my email address for anyone interested. Thanks.
Left by Susan Core on Apr 02, 2009 6:15 PM

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It is important for everyone to contact the Federal Trade Commission and report your problems with DirectTV. The telephone number is 1-877-382-4357. FTC has advised not to pay our early cancellation fee and have assigned us a reference number to quote to the various agencies that DirecTV assigns to collect. Further FTC advised us to contact our state Consumer Protection Department which, on our case, is State of California Department of Justice (we completed complaint on-line). We have already received an anknowledgement from the State of CA.
If enough people contact FTC, they will have a critical mass and it can launch an investigation/suit against DirecTV.
Left by K Dorsey on Apr 06, 2009 11:10 AM

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Caution! The number given by K Dorsey is not listed with the FTC.

Goto:

http://phoneowner.info/Number.aspx/8773824357

This site will tell you who the number is really registered to. Get ready for a surprise, and I wouldn't volunteer any info about your problems with DirecTV.

Ok, I can't stand it. the number is registered in the name of some guy named Kevin, and is affiliated with a collection agency that buys past due accounts from communications firms.

If you have talked to someone from this number and they have represented themselves as a government agent, I would suggest you might want to get in touch with DOJ cyber-crimes division. Impersonation of a government agent in connection with an attempt to collect a debt is in violation of the FDCPA, and use of the internet to perpetrate an illegal act is a whole lot worse.
Left by jim on Apr 17, 2009 6:01 PM

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OK somethings been eating at me besides the cancellation fee which is 380.00 in my case and i returned all the equipment and had to relocate to a building that doesnt allow 'accessories' mounted on the building... here is the kicker though... the $380 was a cacellation fee and an additional $50.05 was charged as a 'communications service tax'

so they are taxing the cacellation fee, courious how many others are getting this tax and its legallity... no service is being provided.

when i called direct tv they stated it would be removed if i payed the $380... when it smells like s@#t you can be sure Directv is nearby... how many of you payed this tax... drop me a line at trifke@ymail.com

good luck
Left by mike trifke on May 06, 2009 12:54 PM

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After reading the messages, I realize that the cancellation fees are quite common. I've had directv for a very long time and with a service contract. When my equipment required replacement, I confirmed with the customer service rep that I was not under a contract. Well.... after I decided to cancell my service and returned the equipment and was still hit with a final bill with a $ 450 cancellation.

I'm all for the class action law suit...this has to stop
Left by Anthony on May 14, 2009 8:40 PM

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We have been with Directv since November 2006, we moved March 2008 and took the service with us. We are moving yet again and when I called them to cancel our service, they told me that I still had a commitment and I said no I don't. I was advised that when we moved, they gave us a 2-year commitment, when I was only advised of a 1-year commitment via phone, which expired March of this year and it is now May 2009. Now they want to charge me an early cancellation fee and I said that I will not pay it as I never agreed to another 2-year commitment through them and was only advised of a 1-year commitment. I was told that they were sorry for the miscommunication; however, they would not correct the problem and stated I would still be charged it. They said that if I do not pay it that they will automatically charge my card on file with them. We do not have the money available to pay this and we should not have to pay this as we did not authorize this. My husband told me that I should cancel the card so that they can't charge it to us. We are going to fight this.

I agree with the class action law suit...this does have to stop now!!!
Left by Carina on May 21, 2009 4:41 PM

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In regards to "K Dorsey" phone number being fraudulent...go to www.ftc.gov/ftc/contact.shtm , its the telephone number listed for the FTC..its not fraudulent.
Left by JCoug on Jun 12, 2009 12:52 AM

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My installation was so ridiculously bad that I wanted to cancel right away. I called as soon as the installation people left and they told me that I would have to pay the cancellation fee for the 2-year contract. I've continued to have nothing but problems with them since.
Left by Rob on Jul 19, 2009 3:59 AM

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you guys are funny. I have had the service for about 15 years and have never had an issue. I have 7 receivers on my current account. I have gotten free upgrades every time I needed one like to HD. I only pay 19 dollars shipping. I have gotten many free replacements over the years. My installs have gone perfect every time and I have have moved about 5 or 6 times. I guess you got to just know what you are doing and how to work the system. I just got my second free HDDVR yesterday. Everytime I get an new HD TV I will call and get another one. I get free PPV movies every year also. I also get free HBO etc anytime I want it. All you have to do is call and ask for it.
Left by George on Jul 21, 2009 8:31 AM

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also to those of you that do not do any research before you by try this. It is not hard to find their T&C's they are all over their web site and every other paper they have you sign.

http://www.directv.com/DTVAPP/global/contentPage.jsp?assetId=1100106&footernavtype=5
Left by George on Jul 21, 2009 8:35 AM

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I JUST paid almost $300, I was with them for about 2years but had to call every month because of services added to my bill, they never had an answer and when I moved they said everything was fine and told me to just take the box with me no charge, the csr on the phone told me I did not have a balance was up to date with my payments, the next bill was around $275 I refuse to pay with out an explanation and they told me that my acct was been sent to collections and they added the equipment to the bill. I paid and I’m still waiting for a response from them.
Left by EVE on Sep 17, 2009 7:54 PM

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Awful AT&T Customer Service
I recently canceled my iPhone service with AT&T. They make it extremely difficult to cancel, and threaten exorbitant fees. The reason I canceled was because voice reception was awful (not sure if it's a general AT&T thing, or if I got a lemon).

On the phone, AT&T's reps refused to negotiate over the cancellation fee, and had the nerve to tell me there's no postal address to write a complaint. After one day, I realized that the mailing address for Customer Service is on the back of the phone bill. Also, there's the address for the California Public Utilities Commission.

Two weeks after writing to both AT&T customer service and the California Public Utilities Commission, I received a very friendly call from AT&T's Office of the President. He offered to waive the cancellation fee and pro-rate my last month. Night and day from the nasty regular customer service reps.

Here's the 2 addresses that worked for me:
1. AT&T Customer Care, PO Box 68058, Anaheim Hills, CA 92817
2. California Public Utilities Commission, 505 Van Ness Ave, Room 2003, San Francisco, CA 94102.

Tip: When writing to AT&T, make it clear that you are sending a copy of your letter to the Public Utilities Commission.

I’m annoyed
Inappropriate? Delete or Edit until someone replies) Reply to this problem
Left by Anthony Hernandez on Oct 01, 2009 12:51 PM

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This article is really interesting and helpful.Thanks for sharing.
Left by trasloco milano on Nov 22, 2009 9:14 PM

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I ordered Direct TV last week because I was being charged a ridiculous amount of money through Comcast. I went with Direct TV because I just finished moving and got a flyer for a prorated amount if I bundle with Qwest. After setting up the install for qwest I called Direct TV to set up installation, they told me I had a $219.95 deposit just to set up which was WAY less then what comcast wanted to charge me for this months bill so I jumped at it. A week after ordering they finally installed the service where I was told I had 30 days to cancel the service, after two days of having it I dont watch tv because i dont like the way its set up the channels I normally watched are not easy to find. Today we got a phone call from the customer service agent and she told us we didnt qualify for a promotion that we were told we would get, after argueing with my husband and changing there reasoning 3-4 times I finally said just cancel it, when my husband said we wanted to cancel she told him there would be a early termination fee of $480.....i was outraged, i never signed a 2 year contract, and I have only had it for two days. DONT ORDER DIRECT TV!!!!!!!!
Left by Leslie on Dec 10, 2009 8:27 AM

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Ya directv are snakes.Well my problem is way after my contract was up , Direct did a famous debit out of my account , (without permission).I didn't even get a paper bill to back it up.I filed complaints with the BBB , local Atty. General's office , trade commission , and anyone else I felt might listen.How directv gets away with this is beyond me.The federal laws (fair credit act , fair billing act) claim this is not legal.So we'll see if I get any help.
Left by David on Feb 26, 2010 12:58 PM

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www.directvscams.com Would you reward a kid for stealing from your purse? Of course you wouldn't.Then why is the NFL rewarding Directv with exclussive rights? They lie , cheat , and steal.They charge you to lease their equipment , then charge you upto $5.99 to protect it against repairs.They will also make unauthorized charges to your credit/debit card.This is 100% accurate , google directv complainsts , it will blow your mind , they had over 20,000 complaints in 3 years , thats a BBB record.They have 3 lawsuits pending , in California , Washington , and Oregon.This does not include the silent suits.My goal is to get congress to open the NFL Sunday Ticket to cable companies , And all Satellite companies , At the top there is a Petition , my goal is to get 10,000 signatures then I'm sending the petition to congress.America needs competition , what if there was only 1 electrc company , gas company , Or auto maker?You Get the point , Thanks for your support! Earl David Evans
Left by David on Mar 01, 2010 4:41 PM

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Don't ever get DIRECTV! They rip you off. I was a long time good customer who faithfully paid my bills. I stuck with their service that I felt was superior to cable except when it rained! I did not like their requirement (which I was told changed when I switched) to pay $200. for a leased DVR. Then I terminated service after many years and switched to UVERSE. I was required to pack up my three receivers and accessories in their own provided boxes and mail them back. I did this timely and according to direction. I tracked the return shipments with their return tracking numbers. They were delivered on July 2, 2010. On July 18, 2010, I received an email stating that I had an outstanding bill which was incorrect because all current charges had been paid. I called to find out that I was being billed for unreturned equipment. I provided tracking numbers and was assured that no charges would be made to my credit card which I was required to provide. I was also told that the bill would be rectified on the next business day. I later received a paper billing for the erroneous balance which I was told that I would receive, but I was waiting for the reversal of the bill which I was assured I would also receive. Yesterday, when I was away from home, I received an auto-generated call which instructed me to call about my account. I did so today, August 2, 2010 and found that my credit card had been charged without my authorization for the erroneous account balance. After over two hours on the phone with the customer service call center and supervisors, I was told I could not be connected to anyone in account billing who had the authority to reverse my charge immediately. I now must wait for a correction that will be made supposedly "within 72 hours." This is bullshit. No reputable company should treat customers this way. I had specifically called and was assured this would be resolved but no one corrected the error. Don\'t ever trust these bastards. They will rip you off.

I am now out to totally discredit DIRECTV, expose them for the thieves that they are, and make sure that the public is aware of how they operate!
Left by Bob on Aug 02, 2010 1:30 PM

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After reading this article, it reiterates to me exactly why I will never go back to DirecTV as a service provider. The tactics for service are ruthless and unfair. I had DirecTV service about a year ago and they offered me the HBO and Showtime offer for three months free. Well it was suppose to be free. In the end I was charged for an additional month and they refused to waive the fee. I finished out the contract but once the contract was over, I decided to go to DISH Network. Not only was the customer service superb but the technology out-shined the competition tremendously. It just so happens that now I am an employee of DISH but working for the company only made me appreciate the service more. If anyone ever wants more info regarding DISH or the promotions you can also get it at dishnetwork.com. –Christopher DeHerrera
Left by christopher deherrera on Jan 17, 2011 5:13 PM

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this is to Scott West who so kindly bragged about his job.....I was a victim of identity theft a few years back and my name and private information was used to recieve your services and i have spent the last 8 yrs trying to get you idiots to take it off my credit and yet you are still sending me the freaking collection notices and bills.....I for one would love to talk to that lawyer who decides to take the case because it's corrupts companies and individuals like you all who leave a few very sour tasting words n my mouth!
Left by rebecca on Feb 24, 2011 10:14 AM

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Direct Tv is so quick to sign you up for service, but when you have a problem with the service you can't reach no one. Direct Tv give you the run around.

Terrible Service
Left by mya2kids on Sep 28, 2011 5:27 AM

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