On Christmas eve, I noticed a charge to my checking account for $27. It showed up as: TWX*SH2P6P*FITNESS MAG 800-205-9198 NY. I called the 800 number, which took me to an automated line. There is an option where they can explain the charge, and it told me that I had subscribed to a free magazine offer in September of 2007, and that after my 90 day trial period, I would be billed regular price for the magazine. It also told me that before I was billed for anything, they would send me a letter detailing the charges and giving me the option of canceling (I never received any letters from them).
When I tried to cancel, it told me that the charges would be refunded in 1-2 business days, but that I would continue to receive the magazine (I've never received the magazine in the first place) and would be billed again in May 2009. There was no option to just cancel everything altogether and get a refund. I don't trust them to give me the refund, so I'm going to my credit union first thing in the moring to see what I can do about the charges.
Ann Arbor, Michigan
*EDitor's Suggestions on how to get your money back into your bank account that someone wrongfully takes it from you! EDitor's Suggestions on how to get your money back! HERE IS WHAT RIP-OFF REPORT SUGGESTS YOU DO:
Go to your bank within 60 days of the charge, or as soon as you know about the charge, don't delay, and tell them that there has been fraudulent activity within your account. Explain that you wish to file a dispute, and demand that they assist you in accordance with Federal Regulation E.
According to the majority of victims interviewed by Rip-off Report, those who immediately called their banks to dispute the charges did not get very far. Many victims got the following responses from their banks: we could not do anything for you or you waited too long; it has been more than 60 days.
If the bank is says that you have waited too long, explain to them how you called their 800 number as soon as the charges were found, and were told by the bank that nothing could be done. Remind the bank that they failed to assist you properly at the 800 #, and instead, provided you with an inadequate explanation of your right to dispute. Tell the bank that it's their fault time has expired, and since they gave you the wrong info to begin with, they will just have to deal with it, take the loss and reverse the charges.
Tell them the truth; this was unauthorized and your account was NOT to be charged! Keep emphasizing how you never authorized anything! Direct them to the hundreds of victims reports that were filed on Rip-off Report.com. And if you're at the bank, walk them over to their computer and make them go to this site! If you are on the phone with them, tell them you will wait while they access this site! Either way, be persistent! DO NOT TAKE NO FOR AN ANSWER!
Let them know nicely, that you were advised to Report them (the Bank) and this situation to the Banking Commission in your state. Since each state has a different name for the agency/controller over banks, find that name before you call or get to the bank so you can throw it in their face. The more knowledgeable you appear to be, the further you will get.
And just continue to demand the Federal Regulation E form! The bank CAN, MUST and WILL reverse the charge! But, you must be persistent; ask to speak to the supervisor or the area manager for all the branches in the state.
Let the bank personnel know you are meeting with the media later in the day, that you would much rather they do the right thing (as most other banks have) by looking at the complaints and immediately reversing the charge(s) to your account; no matter how long ago it was. Be sure to call the Media if necessary so you are telling the truth.
If you have to, be loud (but nice) in front of other customers. If you are just calling by phone, the above tactics should still work. The bank can easily fax or mail to you the Federal Regulation E dispute form. Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on NSS Magazines BUY.com