• Report: #878683

Complaint Review: Assurance Wireless

Thank You

Read how Ripoff Report saves consumers millions.

  • Submitted: Fri, May 04, 2012
  • Updated: Tue, February 26, 2013

  • Reported By: kentuckywoman2 — Louisville Kentucky United States of America
Assurance Wireless
Internet United States of America

Assurance Wireless Virgin Mobile, Sprint Assurance Wireless Fraudulent Program Rips off Consumers and the Government Internet

*Author of original report: Bush started free cell phone program

*Consumer Comment: I agree Assurance Wireless should go out of business

*Consumer Comment: Reagan didn't start wireless program

*REBUTTAL Owner of company: SPRINT is Assurance Wireless

*Consumer Comment: I Concur

*Consumer Comment: WAR ON POOR

*Consumer Comment: USAC

*Consumer Comment: USAC

*General Comment: I have personally researched how these phones (free) are being provided

*Consumer Comment: Take your lecture elsewhere

*Consumer Comment: Do you really know who's paying for your phone?

*Consumer Comment: re: Assurance Wireless

*Author of original report: Assurance Wireless Should Be Put Out of Business

*UPDATE Employee: Help and Apology

*Author of original report: Update to Assurance Wireless from Virgin Mobile

What's this?
What's this?
What's this?
Is this
Ripoff Report
About you?
Ripoff Report
A business' first
line of defense
on the Internet.
If your business is
willing to make a
commitment to
customer satisfaction
Click here now..

Does your business have a bad reputation?
Fix it the right way.
Corporate Advocacy Program™

SEO Reputation Management at its best!

I applied for Assurance Wireless in February 2012.  I'm on food stamps and a couple of other government programs, so I knew I qualified.  I called their customer service number to ask questions regarding phone calls, texting, etc.  I was told the 250 minutes were voice minutes but I could buy 50 texts for $1.99/mo.  That sounded good, so I sent in my food stamp award letter with the application I downloaded from the internet and was accepted.  I received a phone within 2 weeks.

From the beginning, I've had trouble with the phone.  I have to charge it everyday, even if I go days without using it.  I can only make a few phone calls before it needs recharging.  That was just the beginning.  I called and requested a new battery and was told I would receive a new phone.  I'm still waiting.

And the 50 texts I was told I could buy for $1.99?  They don't exist.  My second customer service phone call (after the first one regarding the short battery life) was to complain about the Assurance Wireless customer service representative who gave me that erroneous information.  Talking to their customer service is a nightmare.  I gave up on trying to complain about that, figuring that texting wasn't that important and at least I still could make calls.

Since February, I've made phone calls regularly, using probably half my minutes or less each month.  I only use the phone for communicating with doctors' offices, my landlady, and a few other places.  Not many people know this phone number because I didn't want to start using the phone and waste my minutes on non-essential calls.

When I checked my balance on May 5, I noticed half my minutes were gone.  So I called customer service to find out how they bill (per second, every 6 seconds, etc.).  I had first gone to the website, but couldn't understand how they billed and there was nothing there which explained it.  So I called customer service and was told that they bill 1 minute for every 1 second of a call.  That didn't make sense, so I asked what the legend meant on the website, under "minutes used".  The representative couldn't tell me and didn't know who to refer me to, other than to tell me that I should just take it for granted that they knew what they were doing and I should be thankful for a free phone.  I told him it wasn't free because the government was paying for it, so it wasn't like Assurance Wireless was giving me a free phone/minutes.

The next day I received a letter from Assurance Wireless stating that I haven't used my phone in 60 days (which wasn't true) and that they were going to cancel my free account within 30 days and start charging me 10 cents per call/text, unless I made a call to someone, and also called a number they provided - from my cell phone -to let them know I still wanted the service.  I called the number they gave me and it said it didn't recognize the wireless phone number I was calling from!  I called twice, just to be sure, with the same result.

So, I called Assurance Wireless Customer Service once again and then the real nightmare began.  I explained to the person (Peter) that I had received this letter but that I had been using my phone regularly.  I even gave him my pin number (which I now regret) and he confirmed that I had 120 minutes out of 250 left - which would also indicate I was using my phone.  So I asked him what I should do and he said - "You need to use your phone at least once within a 60 day period" !  In other words, what I said to him, even though he confirmed I had less than the 250 minutes allotted each month left, must have gone in one ear and out the other.  We ended up in an argument, since he wasn't listening to me and I was frustrated because I couldn't find out who I could talk to other than their customer service.  He, too, told me I should be grateful because I was getting a phone for free - to which I replied that the government was paying for it and asked if this was some kind of con to charge both the government and the customer for the same service.  I told him I was going to report this to my State Atty General and that this is why we need customer service back in the U.S., where companies couldn't get away with this kind of thing and representatives were trained and knowledgeable.

Today, my phone stopped working.  I called Customer Service again, and the guy first told me it must be the phone, so he gave me instructions, which I followed, allowing him to check the phone.  Then he said he was going to switch me to a pay plan to see if that would make the phone work.  When he did that, he called me from another phone and the phone rang, but I couldn't make phone calls or check my voicemail. 

Then he put me on hold and came back saying my account has been suspended!  (I believe it was retaliation because yesterday I told that customer service representative, Peter, that their customer service department was a nightmare, no one could speak or understand proper English, and no one seemed to know what was going on and that was why these jobs needed to be in the U.S.)  Today's customer service representative said my account was suspended because the Application Dept. had requested it and that I needed to provide paperwork that said I was still eligible!  I've only had this account for 3 months and I'm certified until Feb 2013.  Assurance Wireless is only supposed to recertify people once per year.  So I asked for the number to the Application dept. and called them.

The Application Dept. told me they didn't know what I was talking about.  They had received and approved my application in February and it was good until Feb 2013.  They said that they couldn't even go into my account, that only Customer Service can do that.  (As I said, I had given that one representative, Peter, my pin number.)  The woman I spoke with told me to call Virgin Mobile customer service and gave me the number.  They referred me back to Assurance Wireless and refused to take my complaint of retaliation.  (They weren't in the States, either.)

The second woman I spoke with in the Applications Dept. actually tried to call Assurance Wireless Customer service, and after waiting almost 15 minutes on hold, I was supposed to be on a conference call with some technical support person AND the Applications Dept. representative.  This time, the story I got was that "someone" had submitted a second application from my address and so they suspended my account for fraud!  I'm 100 percent positive NO ONE submitted a second application.  When I asked this woman WHEN the applications were submitted, she gave the first one as February 2012, which was me, and the second one - she couldn't tell me because she said it was too new! 

I'm 100% positive that one of the customer service representatives got mad at me for reaming them out and retaliated by making sure I wouldn't have service at all.  This woman practically accused me of fraud, yet they have no proof that they can give me that a second application was ever submitted. And indeed, it wasn't.  I don't know of anyone who would have done that.  I'm almost 60, in poor health, indigent, and have no friends left.  I'm certain this was done in retaliation.  I told the woman I'd give her 24 hours to get my phone turned back on before contacting an atty.  I also said I'd turn this over to my state atty general, call Virgin Mobile HQ and maybe even the TV stations.

Well, they turned my phone on alright - now they're CHARGING me.  So I believe they're taking the government's money for the free phone that they 've taken away from me and they've defrauded both the government and myself in the process, because now they switched me to their payment plan - which I neither requested nor authorized.

Never in my life have I dealt with such an unprofessional company.  Assurance Wireless is a fraudulent, incompetent, unethical, unprofessional company with representatives that aren't knowledgeable about the phones or the plans, and can't speak English well enough to communicate.  If there's any way I can sue these people I will, but I will make it my mission to get them investigated and hopefully, out of business.  They shouldn't be allowed to operate and I'm pretty sure they're defrauding the U.S. government.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 05/04/2012 10:50 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Assurance-Wireless/internet/Assurance-Wireless-Virgin-Mobile-Sprint-Assurance-Wireless-Fraudulent-Program-Rips-off-Co-878683. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report.

Click Here to read other Ripoff Reports on Assurance Wireless

Search for additional reports

If you would like to see more Rip-off Reports on this company/individual, search here:

Search Tips
Report & Rebuttal
Respond to this report!
What's this?
Also a victim?
What's this?
Repair Your Reputation!
What's this?
REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
3Author 11Consumer 1Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Author of original report

Bush started free cell phone program

AUTHOR: kentuckywoman2 - ()

Wrong, it wasn't Clinton who expanded the program to include cell phones.  It was Bush.  Clinton expanded the program, yes, but it wasn't until 2008 that G.W. Bush expanded the program to include cell phones.

snopes.com/politics/taxes/cellphone.asp

Respond to this report!
What's this?

#2 Consumer Comment

I agree Assurance Wireless should go out of business

AUTHOR: jdavida - ()

They are a ripoff of our tax money. It's nice the government wants to help those in need with a lifeline service. I have used Assurance Wireless for a few years, but after moving to a different state, and doing as they requested by updating my address, it became a nightmare of incompetancy on the part of Assurance Wireless. First they said I would have to reapply for the new state, which I did in December. Then on my phone it showed my review date had been moved forward to Oct. 2014, so that appeared that they had accepted my new application. However, when I tried making a call on Jan. 10, 2014, and it failed, that I discovered they had shut my off, and never informed me. So I had to wait for a week for them to mail me a new application, and then I filled it out, and faxed it back in. They say it takes 7-10 biz days for an answer. It took 3 weeks, and I got a denial because they said my proof of program had expired, even though there was no expiration date on it. So then on Feb 3, I faxed a 3rd application in, this time with scanned copies of my children's medicaid cards. It took 3 more weeks to get a denial letter, saying no program selection, and nothing on signature page. I checked what I faxed, and it was all there. So I called them and they said they only got the 1st page. So this time I mailed in the application. Now 3 weeks later, they never received it. They are incompetent. Give that money to some other more competent company to administer the program.

BTW, I had been getting 250 texts / month, included, no extra charge. Not sure why they told this other guy he had to pay for just 50 texts.

Respond to this report!
What's this?

#3 Consumer Comment

Reagan didn't start wireless program

AUTHOR: therifleman - ()

Contrary to your comments Ronald Regan did NOT start the current program. The program started under Regan was simply a program to help those poor & in isolated areas get land line service. The program was suddenly changed under Clinton to include wireless service & has even exploded more so under Obama.

Now it is where almost anyone qualifies for a free phone (and text service). So don't say Regan started the current program b/c he didn't! Wireless service wasn't even around then. It was simply a land line program & very limited in scope & nature. Clinton & others changed the rules & made it wireless too (w/o any Congressional approval).

Respond to this report!
What's this?

#4 REBUTTAL Owner of company

SPRINT is Assurance Wireless

AUTHOR: KU Alumn - ()

I applied for Assurance Wireless in February 2012.  I'm on food stamps and a couple of other government programs, so I knew I qualified.  I called their customer service number to ask questions regarding phone calls, texting, etc.  I was told the 250 minutes were voice minutes but I could buy 50 texts for $1.99/mo.  That sounded good, so I sent in my food stamp award letter with the application I downloaded from the internet and was accepted.  I received a phone within 2 weeks.

From the beginning, I've had trouble with the phone.  I have to charge it everyday, even if I go days without using it.  I can only make a few phone calls before it needs recharging.  That was just the beginning.  I called and requested a new battery and was told I would receive a new phone.  I'm still waiting.

And the 50 texts I was told I could buy for $1.99?  They don't exist.  My second customer service phone call (after the first one regarding the short battery life) was to complain about the Assurance Wireless customer service representative who gave me that erroneous information.  Talking to their customer service is a nightmare.  I gave up on trying to complain about that, figuring that texting wasn't that important and at least I still could make calls.

Since February, I've made phone calls regularly, using probably half my minutes or less each month.  I only use the phone for communicating with doctors' offices, my landlady, and a few other places.  Not many people know this phone number because I didn't want to start using the phone and waste my minutes on non-essential calls.

When I checked my balance on May 5, I noticed half my minutes were gone.  So I called customer service to find out how they bill (per second, every 6 seconds, etc.).  I had first gone to the website, but couldn't understand how they billed and there was nothing there which explained it.  So I called customer service and was told that they bill 1 minute for every 1 second of a call.  That didn't make sense, so I asked what the legend meant on the website, under "minutes used".  The representative couldn't tell me and didn't know who to refer me to, other than to tell me that I should just take it for granted that they knew what they were doing and I should be thankful for a free phone.  I told him it wasn't free because the government was paying for it, so it wasn't like Assurance Wireless was giving me a free phone/minutes.

The next day I received a letter from Assurance Wireless stating that I haven't used my phone in 60 days (which wasn't true) and that they were going to cancel my free account within 30 days and start charging me 10 cents per call/text, unless I made a call to someone, and also called a number they provided - from my cell phone -to let them know I still wanted the service.  I called the number they gave me and it said it didn't recognize the wireless phone number I was calling from!  I called twice, just to be sure, with the same result.

So, I called Assurance Wireless Customer Service once again and then the real nightmare began.  I explained to the person (Peter) that I had received this letter but that I had been using my phone regularly.  I even gave him my pin number (which I now regret) and he confirmed that I had 120 minutes out of 250 left - which would also indicate I was using my phone.  So I asked him what I should do and he said - "You need to use your phone at least once within a 60 day period" !  In other words, what I said to him, even though he confirmed I had less than the 250 minutes allotted each month left, must have gone in one ear and out the other.  We ended up in an argument, since he wasn't listening to me and I was frustrated because I couldn't find out who I could talk to other than their customer service.  He, too, told me I should be grateful because I was getting a phone for free - to which I replied that the government was paying for it and asked if this was some kind of con to charge both the government and the customer for the same service.  I told him I was going to report this to my State Atty General and that this is why we need customer service back in the U.S., where companies couldn't get away with this kind of thing and representatives were trained and knowledgeable.

Today, my phone stopped working.  I called Customer Service again, and the guy first told me it must be the phone, so he gave me instructions, which I followed, allowing him to check the phone.  Then he said he was going to switch me to a pay plan to see if that would make the phone work.  When he did that, he called me from another phone and the phone rang, but I couldn't make phone calls or check my voicemail. 

Then he put me on hold and came back saying my account has been suspended!  (I believe it was retaliation because yesterday I told that customer service representative, Peter, that their customer service department was a nightmare, no one could speak or understand proper English, and no one seemed to know what was going on and that was why these jobs needed to be in the U.S.)  Today's customer service representative said my account was suspended because the Application Dept. had requested it and that I needed to provide paperwork that said I was still eligible!  I've only had this account for 3 months and I'm certified until Feb 2013.  Assurance Wireless is only supposed to recertify people once per year.  So I asked for the number to the Application dept. and called them.

The Application Dept. told me they didn't know what I was talking about.  They had received and approved my application in February and it was good until Feb 2013.  They said that they couldn't even go into my account, that only Customer Service can do that.  (As I said, I had given that one representative, Peter, my pin number.)  The woman I spoke with told me to call Virgin Mobile customer service and gave me the number.  They referred me back to Assurance Wireless and refused to take my complaint of retaliation.  (They weren't in the States, either.)

The second woman I spoke with in the Applications Dept. actually tried to call Assurance Wireless Customer service, and after waiting almost 15 minutes on hold, I was supposed to be on a conference call with some technical support person AND the Applications Dept. representative.  This time, the story I got was that "someone" had submitted a second application from my address and so they suspended my account for fraud!  I'm 100 percent positive NO ONE submitted a second application.  When I asked this woman WHEN the applications were submitted, she gave the first one as February 2012, which was me, and the second one - she couldn't tell me because she said it was too new! 

I'm 100% positive that one of the customer service representatives got mad at me for reaming them out and retaliated by making sure I wouldn't have service at all.  This woman practically accused me of fraud, yet they have no proof that they can give me that a second application was ever submitted. And indeed, it wasn't.  I don't know of anyone who would have done that.  I'm almost 60, in poor health, indigent, and have no friends left.  I'm certain this was done in retaliation.  I told the woman I'd give her 24 hours to get my phone turned back on before contacting an atty.  I also said I'd turn this over to my state atty general, call Virgin Mobile HQ and maybe even the TV stations.

Well, they turned my phone on alright - now they're CHARGING me.  So I believe they're taking the government's money for the free phone that they 've taken away from me and they've defrauded both the government and myself in the process, because now they switched me to their payment plan - which I neither requested nor authorized.

Never in my life have I dealt with such an unprofessional company.  Assurance Wireless is a fraudulent, incompetent, unethical, unprofessional company with representatives that aren't knowledgeable about the phones or the plans, and can't speak English well enough to communicate.  If there's any way I can sue these people I will, but I will make it my mission to get them investigated and hopefully, out of business.  They shouldn't be allowed to operate and I'm pretty sure they're defrauding the U.S. government.

SPRINT Corporatiion, 6500 Sprint Pkwy, Overland Park KS 66215; OWNS This Gov't subsidized phone program and are surely SUCKING OUT as much Profit as Possible and leaving Tax-Payers/Consumers/Customers at a loss.  This is one of those 'Fleecing of America' Stories that should leave Hasidic-Folks-Hangning-Their-Heads-In-Shame!

QUALITY, NOT QUANTITY!

Respond to this report!
What's this?

#5 Consumer Comment

I Concur

AUTHOR: KU Alumn - ()

Your complaint / experience reads similar to mine.  In Nov 2012, I was in a Waiting Room of a local Metropolitan Hospital to be present for my father who was having a Pancreatic Procedure done (2-3 days in the Hosp - tops!).  While in the Waiting Room, I suffered a Myocardial Infarction (complete Artery Blockage, and my Heart stopped beating).  My sister, who was sitting near me during/after some commotion (my father was using the bathroom with the bathroom doors still open, and I had just shut the door behind him to give him some privacy) and she noticed that I was just staring blankly at the wall.  She tapped me on the forehead and I didn't blink.  She immediately got the attention of the Medical Staff (Thanks, Sis!!) and they resuscitated me and took me up to the OR where they later performed a quintuple bypass on me (Thanks, DR's / Nurses! for saving my life!!)

After being released and going through rehab, I have learned that I am eligible for the Assurance Lifeline Program because during the intubation process to get air down to my lungs, my vocal chords (well, one of them) was paralyzed.  When I talk now, I sound like 'Batman' and I've had people actually HANG UP on me when I call them.  I now have to Preface each phone call that I make with an explanation/apology so people do not hang-up on me with an explanation of what's happened to me, that I am now disabled, but please give me a chance to talk to them and they'll understand me.  This works about 90% of the time.

When I called to get my phone in January 2013 (it is now June 2013), I spoke with people in South/Central American Countries who spoke English as a 2nd Language and had no patience for anybody with a disability when speaking with them (ME) in a language which was not native to them - and dealing with political agendas that they had no concept of.  These Representatives regularly hung-up on me within the first 60-seconds of the call.  Only recently, within the past 30-days, have I been able to successfully escalate the phone calls to a real supervisor who was then able to help me further.  I did receive a phone call today, from one of the Supervisors whom I have spoken with (Yes, with my GARBLED voice - I have to explain why I feel I am disabled and to provide my Medicaid coverage information) - and he let me know that I have qualified for this phone.  I think I may 'Break-Even' after I figure the amount of time I spent on the phone with my own prepaid minutes (I had to buy more minutes to support this campaign), and now my Doctor's appointments/medicines have been set for the next three months.

So.... now I sit in WAIT status for my Disability Phone that should arrive within the next couple of weeks, I have been told.  This phone will be nice because I will use it to call each of my DR's (I had open heart surgery and had seven DR's, now I'm down to just 4-DR's) and it requires a lot of communication effort.  This program is a Nice Effort, but it should not require such a large EFFORT on the part of those disabled recipients!!  That is K-RAP!!! <K=Kansas>

Respond to this report!
What's this?

#6 Consumer Comment

WAR ON POOR

AUTHOR: postman - ()

 APPLRANGES is what you get when you mix Apples and Oranges.

In this issue you cannot help but end up with APPLRANGES. Why? each State has its own Public Utilities Commission as well as its own Department of Health and Human Services. The FCC attempt to curb waste and fraud has failed miserably. It is being manipulated. The Fox has feathers on his lips. It can only be deduced that as a compromise the FCC allowed additional standards be regulated by the States. This is the failure. Further itself is applying a standard of qualification that is an inferior standard called Annual Re-Certification.

While annual re-certification is applicable to a certain sector of those below the proverty level. This sector is not designated properly as Temporally economically stressed. Instead this standard is being applied improperly to all client/customers. The USAC is culpable in the fact that it knew or should have known that the inferior standard would be applied to those qualifying by "Superior" standards the least of which is Medicaid. Anyone meeting cannot be de-enrolled as long as the superior standards are applicable. The USAC has knowledge that client/customers are suffering the damages caused by de-enrollement up and including negative credit reports and future charges for re-installation of service. The ETCes (Electronic Telecommunications Company) are purposely manipulating the rules reaping a windfall fraudulently.

Please Google [Wireline Competion Bureau provides guidance regarding the 2013 recertification process] exactly omitting the brackets, if the following link doesnt work.

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=wireline%20competion%20bureau%20provides%20guidance%20regarding%20the%202013%20recertification%20process&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&ved=0CC0QFjAA&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.federalregister.gov%2Farticles%2F2013%2F06%2F13%2F2013-14065%2Fwireline-competition-bureau-provides-guidance-regarding-the-2013-lifeline-recertification-process&ei=F0i_Uc6RA4SSyAHa0oGgCQ&usg=AFQjCNFhltkzmvMzMEBZKK01JLZRz6O0jQ&bvm=bv.47883778,d.eWU

if that doesnot work

http://howdoinet.com/lifeline_reg.pdf

or type it in your browser.

You will note in this public notice that footnote 31 declares the "Superior Standard" I point out. Ignoring this these agencies are enforcing a fraudulent standard apparently for no other goal than a "WAR ON POOR".

Beginning Feb. 2013 I complained when my bill went from the usual $20.57 to $59 dollars and change for a customer interface and basic phone service at my permanet address. Six weeks transpired as ATT ignored the correct standards. Eventually I filed an FCC complaint #13-c00484320 at 1-888-CALLFCC it remains open well past the mandatory deadline for resolution. At this point my May bill has $18.72 overdue balance after ATT states it applied a "complimentary" lifeline discount. During this complaint period I continued to pay the incontested portion of $20.57. The bill oustanding I didnot, my math aint THAT FUZZY! $20.57 service plus $18.90 complementary adjustment plus 18.72 unpaid and a $5 late fee on the unpaid portion. For a total of $63.19. Challenging ATT billed amount $64.01

FCC can you hear me now? 

 

Respond to this report!
What's this?

#7 Consumer Comment

USAC

AUTHOR: howRyou - (United States of America)

You  said not to take  your word for it and look for the information myself. Your research has a flaw. USAC was started under Ronald Reagan as a means for the working poor to have phone service for several reasons. In today's standards Reagan is a liberal.

It is a very confusing trail of American Politics. Read all about it here:
http://www.theatlanticwire.com/politics/2012/10/obama-phone-roots-government-privatization/57415/

I'm not rich by any means and have no problem paying a fee for my land-line if it helps a single mother keep track of her kids or dialing a ride. Yes, people will abuse this program. Welcome to  America or more  likely. The  human race.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#8 Consumer Comment

USAC

AUTHOR: howRyou - (United States of America)

You  said not to take  your word for it and look for the information myself. Your research has a flaw. USAC was started under Ronald Reagan as a eans for the working poor to have phone service for several reasons. In today's standards Reagan is a liberal.

It is a very confusing trail of American Politics. Read all about it here:
http://www.theatlanticwire.com/politics/2012/10/obama-phone-roots-government-privatization/57415/
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#9 General Comment

I have personally researched how these phones (free) are being provided

AUTHOR: TX BLUES - (USA)

In my local newspaper there are groups of nothing bu adds for various products, coupons,etc. the first one that caught my eye was Attention eligible Texas residents! All new Assurance Wireless plans now include texts. Under text:" How to Qualify" it states, Assurance Wireless is a federal Lifeline Assistance program brought to you by Virgin Mobile. Lifeline Assistance is a government benefit program supported by the federal Universal Service Fund for which you must qualify. The wording "federal universal service funds" is what caught my attention. I looked at my AT&T phone bill and there is that that charge on my bill, I never asked about it before its just always been there. Before I go further the add from my newspaper is called News America Marketing (800) 727-2695 www.smartsource.com. a News Corporation Company. Publish date 9/16/2012 Advertising supplement to Galveston County News.

I Googled Federal Univ service fund. I opened the Wikipedia.org/wiki/Universal_Service_Adimistrative Company? (USAC) Never heard of it. It is an independent American nonprofit Corporation designated as the administrator of the Univ service Fund (USF) by the Federal Communication Commission (FCC).

In brief,if possible, it begins with why the FCC was formed to begin with. There were only 2Changes made to program. The 2nd change was the charge to the Carriers of service one Bell telephone was dismantled, which states that all carriers were charged a fee payable to FCC. This fee can change every 3months. The FCC didn't care how the fee was to be paid, so all carriers pass this fee on to their customers, you and me! No changes were made to this plan until Jan 2009then again in 2010 and once again in 2011. I'm sure you can figure out who made these changes, Hint, who was President starting in 2009?

I encourage everyone to not take my word on this look it up for yourself. I've given you the information on how I obtained it. The money that pools into this could no b handled by FCC that why they implemented the USAC. For the original lady in Kentucky. You may want to contact, the Low Income Program @ www.usac.org/li. The official website for the USAC. www.usac.org

Ms. Kentucky, a personal note to you. I believe you stated you have a computer with Internet service and a land line. I'm sure it never occurred to you that both of those services charge you the Universal Service Fund on those bills. So your free cell phone is also being paid by you. If I can help you with any other information pleas let me know. Personally I don't think our providers are being fair to any of us by passing this fee on to their customers. Sincerely
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#10 Consumer Comment

Take your lecture elsewhere

AUTHOR: Roberts - (U.S.A.)

Your comment is completely irrelevant to the complaint of the original consumer. There are plenty of right-wing rant websites. Why don't you go find one and spew your political vitriol there? BTYW, you are also wrong about where the money comes from.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#11 Consumer Comment

Do you really know who's paying for your phone?

AUTHOR: TX BLUES - (United States of America)

I would like to clarify for the woman with the Assurance Wireless phone, your phone and anyone else that receives these phones are not paid for by the government.  All of your free service you receive, is paid for by people like me, who pay for my own cell phone, home phone, internet service.  Assurance is a Federally Funded program of Virgin Mobile/Sprint.

Every paying customer to a service provider is charged a fee called, The Universal Service Fund Fee, it's on every bill we pay.  This program begins with the FCC, which created a seperate Non Profit Org, to handle the administrative responsibilities concerning the fee's that the FCC requires Providers to pay quarterly.  The FCC does not make the Providers charge their customers this fee, but our providers pass this fee on to their customers.

So if you think you've been ripped off what do you think about the people that are forced to pay for your free phone>  The USFF is not something we can opt out of it is part of our bill. You are old enough to know that if something sounds to good to be true, it can't be good.

Sad I'm 65 and doing what I can to continue living as I've been accustomed to.  Doesn't makes sense to me that, at my age, I shouldn't be forced to help others..  If all this sharing the wealth continues, I may have to apply for a free cell phone myself.

I think you should visit Wal=Mart or someother reasonable store and purchase one of those pay as you go phones.  You will feel much better about yourself and you control the cost. 
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#12 Consumer Comment

re: Assurance Wireless

AUTHOR: Penny - (United States of America)

I've been a customer since March 2011, and have not had any of this problems. My service always works, have always been able to get through to customer service the few times it's been necessary, and thus am completely satisfied with Assurance Wireless. I highly recommend it to anyone.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#13 Author of original report

Assurance Wireless Should Be Put Out of Business

AUTHOR: kentuckywoman2 - (United States of America)

I have been attempting to resolve this problem since May 4, 2012.  I have contacted several people, both at Assurance Wireless and at Virgin Mobile, including attempting to contact their corporate HQ.  NO ONE seems to be able to resolve this issue.

I believe my account was suspended by an Assurance Wireless "customer service" agent in retaliation for my telling him that their shoddy, poor customer service was a prime reason for American companies bringing their jobs back to the United States, where proper training and accountability at least theoretically exists.

Everytime I speak to an agent, whether a supervisor or an agent, I'm told that my account has been suspended because I need to - and I'll include ALL the reasons I've heard from several agents to date:
1.  There's been an second application and they suspect fraud.
2.  They need me to confirm my street address.
3.  They need me to fill out paperwork they'll be sending me.
4.  They need to reconfirm my continued eligibility.
5.  They're befuddled and don't know why.

The Applications Dept. has confirmed, several times, that they have received only one application from my address and in my name.  This was approved on February 22, 2012.

Even when the Applications Dept. has been on the phone with both myself and a supervisor from Assurance Wireless Customer Service, the same reason is repeated.  When the Applications Dept. says they did not receive more than one application, then the Customer Service Representative jumps to yet another reason, like reaffirmed my continued eligibility. 

Eligibility is only supposed to be confirmed once per annum - or once per year.  Nothing should have triggered a second eligibility concern. 

The last agent I spoke with said that Assurance Wireless was mailing me some paperwork that I needed to fill out and return to confirm my mailing address.  Ha.

On Saturday and today I have received applications for the service from Assurance wireless!  In other words, they want me to break the law and reapply!  But if I apply more than once in a 12 month time, then I've been advised by an attorney that I would be breaking the law!  Besides, there's no difference now than there was in February, when I applied.

In trying to find out who the agent was that started this nightmare, I have been told that Assurance Wireless does NOT require their agents to make notations in customer's accounts OR when changes are made, to put in their ID#, name, or any other identifying information. 

In other words, that means that Assurance Wireless Customer Service Representatives can pretty much do whatever they want to customers' accounts and get away with it! For instance, there is no record of who originally suspended my account.  That not only means that this person is getting away with putting me through hell, but will NEVER be held accountable for it and will quite likely do it again to another customer he doesn't like or argues with.

There is absolutely NO reason why I should be asked to reapply for Assurance wireless service.  I've done nothing wrong, and I won't break the law to cover their behinds.

Plus, there is still the matter of the letter I received stating that I hadn't used my phone in over 60 days and would be suspended within the next 30 days unless I used my phone.  And what's up with the number they gave me to call to confirm my service?  When I called from my Assurance Wireless phone, it's voice menu said it didn't recognize the number!

This is the most disorganized, fraudulent, incapable, despicable company I've ever had the displeasure to do business with!  The right hand doesn't know what the left hand is doing, there is NO accountability, no training - obviously, and no one seems to be able to "fix" this problem other than trying to trap me into fraudulently applying for another line of service, when I'm supposed to have - legitimately - a free service that my government is probably still paying for and I'm not getting. 

In fact, that's what the argument was about that I had with the customer service agent that did this to me in the first place.  When I asked a billing question as to how they billed for minutes, etc., he said, "Why do you need to know that, you aren't paying for it.  For you, it is free and so you don't need to know how it is billed."  Or that's the gist of it.  And that's when I told him Assurance Wireless needed to bring its customer service back to the states where agents would be properly trained and would be fired for ever talking to a customer that way.

This is a nightmare and I'm to the point of talking to an attorney to see if I can sue, and to my State Attorney General to file a formal complaint against Assurance Wireless.  I'm on a mission to get them out of Kentucky, if not out of business!  These people should NOT be allowed to operate a business, period.

The agent in technical support that I spoke with last week said that even if they did manage to switch my account back, which everyone says the system will not allow them to do so, it would be disconnected in 30 days anyway.  Why?  All she said is that that's what Assurance Wireless customer service said. 

This is the most messed up company I have ever dealt with.  They need to go.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#14 UPDATE Employee

Help and Apology

AUTHOR: AssuranceJack - (United States of America)

I sincerely apologize for the difficulty you have had.  Please email us at experience@AssuranceWireless .com and we will help to resolve the issues.  Please provide your contact information and we will contact you.

Thank you and again we apologize.
Respond to this report!
What's this?

#15 Author of original report

Update to Assurance Wireless from Virgin Mobile

AUTHOR: kentuckywoman2 - (United States of America)

After I filed this report last night I checked my email and there was an email "welcoming" me to Virgin Mobile Pay Plan, with instructions on how to add money to my "account!"  I replied that I neither requested nor authorized this "upgrade", that I was still eligible for the free 250 minutes that the government is paying them on my behalf, and that the customer service representative switched me to see if it made a difference in whether my phone worked or not.

Of course, it made a difference.  When my "free" account was suspended in retaliation for my complaints, naturally it wouldn't work.  Making me a paying customer, of course, did make it work.

Today my phone has been turned back OFF.

I seriously suspect that this company is defrauding the United States government.  It's customer service department is horrible and I don't think the U.S. should allow this company to participate in free government cellular phone programs.  It will be my mission to make that happen, even if I have to contact my U.S. Representative and Senators in Congress.

DON'T DO BUSINESS WITH THIS COMPANY!
Respond to this report!
What's this?
Report & Rebuttal
Respond to this report!
What's this?
Also a victim?
What's this?
Repair Your Reputation!
What's this?

Advertisers above have met our
strict standards for business conduct.



Ripoff Report Legal Directory
mixture