I was an Air Force Reservist being called to Active duty for Operation Iraqi Freedom in March 2004. I called Dish network to have the cable services discontinued. I was charged a $250 cancellation fee which I paid via debit card. I informed Dish Network as to the reason of my cancellation, they did not comment on anything about it. I had not been in the military very long so I did not think to question this.
This was the last time I received or had any mail or communication from Dish Network regarding this account. I left forwarding addresses for any mail during my deployment. August 2008 I received a letter from the law offices of Meyer, Stone, & Stratman, LLP located in Evansville IN. Their letter informed me that Satellite America (a third party contractor for Dish Network) was seeking from me a total of $866 for an Satellite America cancellation fee, attorney fees & costs of collections. I was informed I must write a check out to Satellite America but mail it to the law offices within 30 days or Satellite America would file suit to collect this account. I would not have otherwise cancelled the account but facing a very long deployment, and I terminated my lease of my apartment as well as the Dish Network account.
Its very hard to believe it took Satellite America almost 5 years to find me. Why was there no attempt to collect these monies 5 years ago, why was no bill ever sent. Why did Dish network turn it over to Satellite America without even so much as a letter, and the same for Satellite America. Its not on my credit reports, I've checked all three. This bill has come out of nowhere after 5 years. I am very shocked, disgusted that Dish Network & Satellite America would attempt to collect this amount from me especially since I was being deployed for direct support for Operation Iraqi Freedom. This also is the first letter, or communication I have had with this law office, Satellite America, or Dish Network concerning this matter that is almost over 5 years old.
I have all copies of my orders from that year, I've contacted the Better Business Bureau, I'm contacting the state consumer protection. I've called Satellite America but the number is no longer in service. I also did some research and Dish Network says its policy for early cancellations for military members due to deployment is to waive the cancellation fee!