On March 21, 2005 I got a phone call from Premier Benefit claiming they would send me $200 worth of vouchers to Home Depot if I paid them a $3.95 handling charge. The packet would also include a 7-day free trial of a long distance service, a 10-day free trial of free movie passes and a 30-day free trial of restaurant rebates. They said the packet would arrive in 2 days.
I had to give them (and foolishly did) my bank routing number and account number, and agree to the payments on a recorded phone session. The time limit for the services was to start after I received the packet and activated the services.
I was to call 1-800-357-8873 to cancel the first service, 1-800-375-9145 to cancel the second service and 1-800-357-7592 to cancel the third service. If not canceled, the charges for each service would be taken out of my checking account. The charges were to be (1) $49.95 per month plus a $99 setup fee (2) $19.95 every 30 days plus a $99 setup fee (3) $19.95 monthly plus two successive monthly setup fees of $99 each.
This was offered by Janis Hogg, employee number 10662.
I called 1-800-357-9973 after seven days to say I had not received the packet. I was assured that the packet had been mailed on March 23rd and that I had until April 8 to cancel the first offer, April 11 to cancel the second, adn April 29 to cancel the third.
On March 31 I noticed that my account had been charged $3.95 two times and $119 once on March 28, the day I had last called them.
I read other ripoff reports, called my bank, and they are in the process of changing my account number to eliminate additional charges. (I plan to try to get reimbursement for the bank charges, but have nothing to report on that yet.)
On April 1, 2005 I called to try to get the address of Premier Benefit. Although the person on March 28 had answered the 1-800-357-8873 number with "Premier Benefits Customer Service, how may I help you", this time they answered as "Call One Unlimited". I repeatedly asked for their address, stating (falsely) that I had received their packet and wanted to send them some money as a thank you. He repeatedly asked for my phone number to look up my records, which I refused to do. He did give me the web address for call one (www.calloneunlimited.com).
I examined the web site. It says very little about the company. However, the "Terms and Licenses" page does list the address in Orange, CA and states that the agreement is between "Premier Benefits, Inc." and [the member]. It also says fees will be taken from the checking account given by the member.
Los Osos, California
U.S.A. 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. CHARGES TO YOUR CREDIT CARD
If the charge was to your credit card (not debit card, check card, or checking account), contact the credit card company as soon as possible to request a dispute form. Consumers usually have a little longer to dispute fraudulent credit card charges (up to 6 months), but it is better to act right away. In this type of situation, credit card disputes are usually successful since fraudulent companies often won't contest the disputed charge. In rare cases, credit card companies will review disputes, but refuse to reverse the charges. If this occurs, complain to a manager and let them know you will be filing a report here.
Remember Don't let them get away with it! Make sure they make the Rip-off Report .. The more Reports filed on a Company or individual, the more likely it is that the authorities, media and attorneys will want to take action.
And good luck Let us know how you do!
ED Magedson Founder, Rip-off Report.com & Author of www.ripoffrevenge.com EDitor@ripoffreport.com bad
Don't let them get away with it.
Make sure they make the Rip-off Report!
We are not lawyers.
We are not a collection agency.
We are Consumer Advocates. ...the victims' advocate
WE are Civil and Human Rights Activists
We are a Worldwide Consumer Reporting News Agency ...by consumers, for consumers CLICK HERE to read about Credit Card Scams... find out how to get your money back. *Rip-off Report Investigation provides valuable information. Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on Premier Savings