July 17, 2006: Signed up for trial membership of BargainMotors.com. This was part of an online paid survey. The survey company paid $15.00 for signing up for the trial and completing a survey about this Web site.
July 18th: Called to cancel my account. I had completed the survey and had no interest in or continuing my membership. I talked to Samir, Operator #13986. He gave me a confirmation number, #[redacted] and told me that my account had been canceled, and my card would not be charged.
Nov. 6: I received my credit card bill and discovered that I had been charged $39.80 each month since July. (4 months, total $159.20). I called several customer service numbers, and after being disconnected several times, I called Mark Mastman (805-968-2020 ext 2147). I found his number and extension on the BBB site from reports of other consumers who filed complaints against this company.
He said that my membership for Price Store (which I don't remember ever signing up for) had been canceled in July, and the Bargain Motors account was still active.
He would only give me a refund for 3 out of the 4 months. He said this was "a very generous offer" on his part.
When I told Mr. Mastman that I felt I was entitled to a refund for all 4 months, he offered to pull the recording of my July call to make sure the operator was compliant in canceling my account. However, he threatened that due to the expense of retrieving the recording, if they deemed "the operator was compliant," then I would only be refunded for the unused time on my account (about $20).
Additionally, when I mentioned that I intended to ask my lawyer for advice before making a decision, he got very defensive and angry sounding. He said "at this point, I'm going to stop all negotiations with you and pull the recording of that phone call right now."
So I reluctantly accepted the 3-month refund.
So I've just lost $39.80. I consider it a lesson learned. Maybe if I had checked the BBB first, I could've avoided this mess in the first place.