• Report: #384215

Complaint Review: DirecTV

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  • Submitted: Thu, October 23, 2008
  • Updated: Sat, December 08, 2012

  • Reported By:Casper Nova Scotia
DirecTV
2230 East Imperial Highway El Segundo, California U.S.A.

DirecTV Lying about Contractual Issues; bogus charges on bill; refusal to move my service for free, and more El Segundo California

*Consumer Comment: Early Cancellation Fees and More

*Consumer Comment: I am in the same boat but they won't even allow me one move

*Consumer Comment: i am a directv employee

*Consumer Comment: DirecTV customer here

*Consumer Comment: Mover's Connection

*Consumer Suggestion: Cost of Moving

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Here is the correspondence I've had with DirecTV over the past 2 days.
Hello, DirecTV:

I need some answers please. I am totally amazed and disgusted with your customer service. Please forward this e-mail to a supervisor if you will.

Today I called DirecTV and spoke with Levi, one of your customer service reps, inquiring about a move. He eventually told me that a move would cost us over $200 since this is our second move within 12 months' time. Where is that written in any documentation you gave us? I am not in possession of such documentation, nor did anyone tell me that, whether it be your installation person or customer service.

Then I told Levi to cancel our service. He informed me it would cost $289 to cancel since we would be breaking our 2-year contract. WE WERE UNDER NO SUCH CONTRACT OF ANY KIND.

I am totally shocked at your business practices. You seemingly arbitrarily make up rules as you go.

Levi then said he would "take $10 off a month for 6 months." I refused saying that we have been loyal and good-paying customers. He then went on to say he would "split the difference with me." What the heck is this about? DirecTV has no rules in place that you communicate with your customers. You just make it up as you go. Obviously by Levi's offers, you can do what you want and there are no rules in place. Why do you try to take advantage of your customers?

Even when we again signed up with DirecTV in January 2008, I was promised a $50 gift card if I signed up with a credit card. I was promised that gift card in 6 weeks. 5 months later, I still had no gift card. It took several calls and e-mails to finally get that card sent.

When we moved in June and had our service transferred, unbeknownst to us, DirecTV started charging us for premium movie channels. Once again, I had to call to get reimbursed for those charges because I never authorized getting any movies.

Why would I be given a credit when I am due a refund since customers pay for service in advance, if it's my intention to cancel service? I told him to issue me a refund. He said that would take 6-8 weeks.

This is so unacceptable. I am totally disgusted with DirecTV's lack of professionalism and unscrupulous business practices.

Nowhere in any documentation we were given did it say transferring service is only good once per 12 months. This is a disgrace.

I am asking that you transfer our service complimentary. If you do not accommodate us, we will find service with another provider because you'll provide us with no alternative. However, I will not hesitate to voice my experience with the Better Business Bureau about your unethical practices and any other entity who can address my issues. We are hard-working, paycheck-to-paycheck type people who are just trying to raise our family and make ends meet. I have spent endless minutes if not hours corresponding and calling DirecTV about such issues.

Again, please forward this to someone who can address these issues without the game-playing and runaround.
Thank you.

Response (Jason H ID W2773) - 10/22/2008 02:23 PM
Thank you for writing. Your email was forwarded to me in order to address your concerns with the cost of relocating your DIRECTV equipment to your new home. I tried to call you today at approximately 4:15 PM CDT to discuss this matter with you, but I was unable to reach you.

Our MOVERS CONNECTION program provides our customers with a service valued at over $300 per move. We offer it as a free service every 6 months. However, if you move more than once in 6 months, due to the costs we incur, we can only discount the service $101, making it a $199 fee. I hope this information is helpful.

I would also be happy to explain your programming commitment to you. DIRECTV significantly discounts the price of equipment and installations so we ask you to keep your programming for at least 18 months for standard receivers / 2 years for DVR, HD, and HD-DVR receivers. Details about programming agreements and early cancellation fees are included in our advertising and point-of-sale materials. This information is also included in the confirmation letters sent by DIRECTV after you place an order for equipment and in the DIRECTV Equipment Lease Addendum, which is signed at the time of installation. For more information on programming agreements, please visit our website at directv.com/agreements (http://directv.com/agreements) .

While our corporate office responds to any inquiries that the Better Business Bureau forwards to us, I appreciate that you have given me an opportunity to respond to your concerns.

Sincerely,
Jay H.
W2773
DIRECTV Customer Service

Customer - 10/22/2008 02:55 PM
No, nobody indicated any such agreement, especially 18 months' worth. I know I discussed this with the agent in January when we signed up again. We had already gone through a commitment/contract in recent years and fulfilled the contract. We went to Dish and then back to DirecTV. So your rep WAIVED any contract since we fulfilled one previously. I cannot believe you are not going to honor the verbal agreement your company representative made to me. If you are any type of reputable company, you should honor the agreements made by your personnel!!!

Not only that, your company does not fully explain or advertise all the little hidden traps you set your customers into. You do know that is deceptive advertising. All you advertise is that if there is a move, to leave the dish and take the remote and receiver with you and DirectV will set you up at the new location. You do not openly advertise the fact that there is only one paid move for a 6-month period. Nonetheless, if there is nothing you can do in that regard, then you explain to me why your company rep tried to negotiate with me, first by saying he'd take $10 off for 6 months, and then offering to split the cost. You pick and choose whom you are going to make deals with and there is no set policy enforced. We are forced to move due to a company relocation; we didn't choose to move.

If you aren't going to honor any of my stipulations on the above (moving us for free or releasing us from the contract you say we have but didn't agree
to, free of charge), then I want to be reimbursed for my time and efforts I had to spend waiting on hold to get your mistakes cleared up. You added premium movie channels to my account without my consent or authorization and then billed me for it. Not only that, I had to demand that I be reimbursed for something I did not order. You promised a gift card within a certain timeframe and that too was not delivered until 5 months later, after I had to contact you via e-mail and phone calls several times.

I have been forced to spend countless hours trying to get your mistakes resolved; so now I want to be reimbursed. You give us our free move and we'll call it even. Now I know you can do that because your company rep, Levi, offered me several "deals." Obviously you do not have any set policies enforced so please don't insult my intelligence by telling me to read your company programming agreements. I'll be awaiting your response.

Response (Michael Y ID U8843) - 10/23/2008 10:57 AM

Thank you for writing.
In reviewing your account, I see that we provided you a MOVERS CONNECTION at no extra cost on 06/04/08. You are only eligible to receive one MOVERS CONNECTION installation at no charge over a twelve month period. The cost for a second MOVERS CONNECTION is $199. We are able to offer a discount with a $10 programming credit for six months, however, you are not eligible to receive a second MOVERS CONNECTION within a twelve month period at no charge.

If you are interested in setting up a MOVERS CONNECTION order, please call us at 1-866-929-8668 and a specialist will be happy to assist you.

DIRECTV significantly discounts the price of equipment and installations so we ask you to keep your programming for at least 2 years for DVR, HD, and HD-DVR receivers. If you cancel your service or do not maintain the minimum programming requirements we may charge an early cancellation fee.

I have reviewed your account and I see that you activated equipment on 01/10/08 and at that time you agreed to a 2 year programming agreement. Please be aware that your first MOVERS CONNECTION did not extend your programming commitment. If you do not maintain the minimum program requirements, you are subject to an early cancellation fee being charged to your account. We feel that this fee is valid and we are unable to remove it.

For more information on programming agreements please visit our web site at directv.com/agreements.

Please be aware that we are not able to reimburse you for the time you have spent on the phone.

Thank you again for writing.

Sincerely,

Michael Y ID U8843
DIRECTV Customer Service

You say you are "unable to remove it" (in regards to fees). Then you explain to me why your customer service rep offered me a couple different options -- $10 off for 6 months and then he offered to "split the cost." YOU EXPLAIN TO ME YOUR POLICIES AND HOW THEIR IS NO CONSISTENCY AMONGST YOUR AGENTS. I want you to provide me with the signed copy of that agreement because I DID NOT authorize a 2-year agreement! I have filed a complaint with the better business bureau. YOU GUYS ARE TOTALLY UNSCRUPULOUS AND SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF THE WAY YOU CONDUCT BUSINESS.

I want an explanation immediately as to why your agent did not follow your company policy and made me several offers. You guys do what you want. There is no policy in place. He followed no guidelines and you SHOULD UPHOLD YOUR ORIGINAL AGENT'S AGREEMENT WITH ME THAT WE HAD NO CONTRACT.

Send me my copy of the signed agreement you speak of. I didn't sign anything to that regard. So I need proof. You can't provide it because it doesn't exist and you know it.

I want out of the "so called" agreement at no charge. You have consistently screwed with me and my account, adding charges I didn't agree to, and you sit there and try to nickel and dime me even more. What right do you have? You guys have caused me endless aggravation by charging my account with bogus charges and fees. You owe me money for the time I had to spend fixing your mistakes.

I want out of this "contract that doesn't exist" at no charge. You at least owe me that much. I have paid my bills on time every month. I put up with your mistakes nearly every month.

We are going through a financial crisis and having to move on top of it. The stress is terrible. I can't even believe you won't even right your wrongs by canceling our service at no charge. We don't owe it.

So that's the correspondence. I have filed my complaint with the Better Business Bureau and hope to get some type of resolution. At this point, I just want out from having them as our service provider. They lie, misrepresent, and routinely add programming to your package without telling you. Beware of DirecTV. If you are subscribers, be sure to read over each bill with a fine-tooth comb.

Walshie
Casper, Nova Scotia
U.S.A.

Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on DirectTV

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 10/23/2008 02:36 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/DirecTV/El-Segundo-California-90245/DirecTV-Lying-about-Contractual-Issues-bogus-charges-on-bill-refusal-to-move-my-service-384215. 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.

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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
0Author 6Consumer 0Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Comment

Early Cancellation Fees and More

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

I wonder why they didn't offer to move mine for free?  Oh, maybe it was because:

1.  The service wasn't working as it should from the time we got it.
2.  We were newer customers
3.  One rep quoted $99 for the move and another quoted $299. Which was it now?
4.  Because they didn't want to?

I really don't know, but what I know is this:

FACT: They OFFERED to cancel my contract and waive early cancellation fees due to the multiple issues we had with their service.  I took them up on that and was told I would not be charged anything further. They did NOT disconnect the service as agreed and let it keep going and going and going AFTER we moved. (why in the world would i purposely leave service on at an address that I wasn't going to be living at?)  As a result, my bank account was just debited for over 300 bucks.  Billing supervisor blamed it on me.  He said it was for "early cancellation" fees.  Oh yeah, those were the fees that I was told I would not be charged.  Gosh, and somehow that is my fault?  I can sympathize with this person, although I see the point in the multiple move issues, BUT, how can DirecTV just go in and do an unauthorized charge against my bank account?  I'll tell ya how.. because they do lie.  I was lied to.  HAD I known then what I know now, I'd have written down names... dates.. the whole 9 yards.  Funny how the bank is SO willing to process my dispute so quickly. (maybe they know something i don't)  I'm glad, because I sure could use that money to pay the bills that are due on service providers that are actually PROVIDING a service to me at this time. 
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#2 Consumer Comment

I am in the same boat but they won't even allow me one move

AUTHOR: Melissa - (USA)

I can relate all too well with this complaint.  While I did know that there was a contract and disconnect fees I assumed that I would be able to move the service if I moved.  I have bought a house and they want to charge me $219 to move or pay the disconnection fee of about the same amount.  They advertise that you just take your receivers and remotes with you and they do the rest.  This would be my first move, so seeing the Direct TV representive commenting on here about how they allow one move per 12 months really makes me wonder.  That's not what they told me. 

Hey Direct TV, where is my free move per 12 month period?  They totally acted like they would rather loose a customer than move my service for free because no matter what I do they are going to charge me over $200.  This isn't the first problem I've had with Direct TV.  I've had to call almost every month over billing issues, I prefer not to spend my time on the phone with these people for hours every month especially when I pay over $80 to them every month.  I will be filling my own claim soon, on the phone with them now (on hold of course, going over my minutes on my cell phone plan over this so it's really costing me)
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#3 Consumer Comment

i am a directv employee

AUTHOR: Lil J - (U.S.A.)

It is printed very clearly on any correspondence and on our website that you can only use the mover's connection for free relocation 1 time in a 12 month period.

The issue with your "contract that doesn't exist" there is no way that you came back to directv and avoid a contract unless you owned the receivers and were reactivating them. Everytime you accept any receiver from directv that starts a new lease agreement. Advanced receivers (dvr, hd, or hd-dvr) come with a 2 year commitment and standard receivers come with an 18-month commitment. Your mover's connection likely came with a free equipment upgrade, mine did when I used it before I became a directv employee. I understood at the time I was starting a new 2 year contract and was fine with it because I love my service and never have any problems with it.

So many customers are always wanting free, free, free. How do you expect directv to make any money if you keep getting everything free. We have to get our money back so you get into the commitment when you take the free equipment upgrades.
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#4 Consumer Comment

DirecTV customer here

AUTHOR: J0hnnyv - (U.S.A.)

I am a new customer for 2 months now and when I signed up over the phone the rep must have told me atleast 3 times that there was a 2 year agreement with HD dvr service and he even took it seemed like 5 minutes explaining the penalties and what the charges would be.

I always read directv.com and all of their policies to see how they work as a company. The moving thing I actually read about a few weeks ago and everything you are complaining about is clearly outlined here on their moving page on the movers connection terms and conditions:

DIRECTV MOVERS CONNECTION: Offer available once in any 12 month period for qualifying customers only. Qualifications based on tenure, package level, payment history and other factors. Sport blackouts and your ability to receive local channels or broadcast networks may be affected by new address. HBO, Starz and Showtime Offer: Offer ends 03/03/09. Customer will automatically receive a $35/mo. bill credit for 3 months. IF, AFTER 3 CONSECUTIVE MONTHS, CUSTOMER DOES NOT CONTACT DIRECTV TO CHANGE HBO, STARZ AND SHOWTIME SERVICE, THEN ALL SERVICES TO WHICH CUSTOMER IS SUBSCRIBING WILL AUTOMATICALLY CONTINUE ON THE 4TH MONTH AT THE THEN-PREVAILING RATES. DIRECTV System has a feature which restricts access to channels. To remain eligible, DIRECTV account must remain in good standing or bill credits will cease.

Residential customers only. Account must be in "good standing," as determined by DIRECTV in its sole discretion, to remain eligible. Receipt of DIRECTV programming subject to DIRECTV Customer Agreement; copy provided at directv.com/legal and in first bill. Programming, pricing, terms and conditions subject to change at any time. Pricing is residential. Taxes not included. DIRECTV services are not provided outside the U.S. Receipt of DIRECTV programming is subject to DIRECTV Customer Agreement; copy provided at directv.com/legal and in your first bill. HBO is a service mark of Home Box Office, Inc.. SHOWTIME and related marks are registered trademarks of Showtime Networks Inc, a CBS Company. Starz and related channels and service marks are the property of Starz Entertainment, LLC. 2008 DIRECTV, Inc. DIRECTV, the Cyclone Design logo, DIRECTV MOVERS CONNECTION and FEEL THE JOY are registered trademarks of DIRECTV, Inc.

On their main page for "moving" it even shows the premium channel 3 month free promotin with an * and the asterisk was explained above that its a charge and then a credit over the 3 months.

I feel your pain in this one but you also definitely signed paperwork showing the 2 year agreement as well. They did exactly what their website moving policy describes: give you a free move once every 12 months, gave you the hbo,starz,showtime for free for 3 months. And they have to charge you for the 2nd move within a year.

I wish you luck but am not sure you can win this one in court or anywhere else. Keep us posted.
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#5 Consumer Comment

Mover's Connection

AUTHOR: Kaj79 - (U.S.A.)

Unfortunately, you are under an agreement with DIRECTV for 18 or 24 months if you signed up in 2008. Prior to '08 it was 12 month agreement. The paperwork you should have been asked to sign at installation was the agreement. DIRECTV only offers 1 free mover's connection in a 12 month period. My suggestion, see if you can locate a local dealer in your area, look in the yellow pages. Bring all your receivers, remotes and even the dish to your new home. If you call someone local, they may can give you a better deal on the cost of the move than what the corporate office is wanting to charge you. Just be sure you update your new address w/Directv so you get your bills.
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#6 Consumer Suggestion

Cost of Moving

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

So, Directv moves your service for free and then you want them to do it again in a few months and so you get mad because they tell you there is a cost. I don't get it.

From their Movers Terms:

DIRECTV MOVERS CONNECTION: Offer available once in any 12 month period for qualifying customers only. Qualifications based on tenure, package level, payment history and other factors.
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