• Report: #435760

Complaint Review: Qwest Communications International

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  • Submitted: Thu, March 19, 2009
  • Updated: Wed, June 24, 2009

  • Reported By:Centennial Colorado
Qwest Communications International
1801 California Street Denver, Colorado U.S.A.

Qwest Communications International Fails to honor bundle prices, adds mysterious, unitemized $200 plus fees, charges early-termination fees despite contract changes Denver Colorado

*Author of original report: Qwest ripoff in collections

*Author of original report: (Another) Qwest debacle escalates to collections

*Author of original report: (Another) Qwest debacle escalates to collections

*Author of original report: (Another) Qwest debacle escalates to collections

*UPDATE Employee: Thanks

*UPDATE Employee: CALL IN

*UPDATE Employee: CALL IN

*UPDATE Employee: CALL IN

*UPDATE Employee: CALL IN

*Author of original report: There you have it

*UPDATE Employee: Advice

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Unfortunately, this is not a concise history, but it's all pertinent.

It started in may 2006 when I decided to take Qwest up on their $99/mo. bundle for Landline, DSL and Wireless service. To start my new service, Qwest wanted me to physically pay $399 by money order at one of their payment centers (located in a local grocery store). $199 was for my new phone with 2 year contract, and $200 was a deposit the salesperson assured me I would be refunded on my first bill.

After a week of carrying two cell phones while waiting for my Qwest phone to start working, I was still getting calls on my Verizon phone. I called a Qwest rep who told me that I was not yet a customer. I told them that since I had been using DSL and their land-line all week, I was pretty sure I was, in fact, a Qwest customer. After roughly four cumulative hours on the telephone back and forth between Qwest and Verizon, with finger pointing in both directions, a conference call between myself, Richard Smith of Verizon and a Qwest supervisor by the name of Daphne finally revealed that Qwest had never submitted the request for transfer of service.

With some pressing, Qwest acknowledged that whomever took my original order had set up my home account separate from my wireless service. The rep was not sure I would still be eligible for the bundle price, in spite of the fact that this was clearly Qwest's error. I was finally assured that my service would cost the same, even if it didn't show up as a bundle.

When I got my first bill for $469.10, I was shocked to see that they were asking me to kindly pay $399 for my new phone. I called and again was told that I was not yet a customer. I advised the rep to check my wireless number even though the account number on my bill was clearly my home #. (Sure enough: the error had not yet been corrected.) The rep stated that Qwest didn't accept payments at "payment centers".
I had to FAX them the copy of my money order, and then had to reiterate that $200 was supposed to be for a deposit and that the phone was purchased for $199 with a 2 year contract. The rep agreed to credit the $399, but waived off the $200 deposit saying I would probably get it back at the end of 1 year. I went through several reps who identified themselves as managers and was unable to get any resolution from there. I gave up in frustration and hoped I'd see $200 at the end of a year. (I never did)

Over the following year and a half, attempts to correct the bundle prices continued, and my monthly bills averaged $45 over what I was promised. Customer Service insisted that the difference was just fees and surcharges etc. I learned that the hours spent explaining my situation to 3-4 different reps (who identified themselves as managers and or supervisors) would be fruitless. I gave up.

In Feb. 2009, I learned that Qwest was handing its wireless services over to Verizon (whose service I had left less than 2 years prior!), but that I would be required to either sign a new 2 year contract or to pay the $200 early termination fee. This was frustrating to me, but after almost 2 years of taking it up the tail pipe by these @$$holes, I realized it wasn't worth fighting, and $200 would be a small price to pay to be finished with Qwest.

My final bill came on 2/12/2009. 1 month's service and fees: $532.58. Qwest's website showed my monthly bill (as usual: well over the roughly $100 bundle price I was promised at startup), a $200 early termination fee, and some "Miscellaneous Fee" for roughly $220 some odd (I can no longer log onto the site because now, I truly am not a customer.)

I was furious. No longer settling for Customer Mismanagement via phone, I went to a Qwest retail store and spoke with "Solutions Center Manager" S.K. "Pat" Patrick. He assured me he would get to the bottom of this situation and would call me back in a day or two. A week later, on 2/24/2009, I called him and asked him what was going on. He told me he had forwarded it along to the "Complex Billing Dept and I should hear something within the week."

Two and a half weeks later, on 3/13/2009 at 3:30 PM, I called Mr. Patrick again and told him I had just received a collections notice. He assured me he would get it pulled from collections and find out what was happening. I pressed him for when I would hear from him. He said he would call me "by Monday at the latest." Tuesday morning, at 9:40 AM: He said he was on his way to the store and would call me as soon as he got in. That afternoon I still had not heard from him so again, *I called him*. He then said that he still had no idea what the $220 some-odd charge was for, and that there was nothing else he could do. He then referred me to "Qwest Executive Escalations" with a mailing address.

This is where it stands. Qwest is threatening to take my account to collections for an unfair $200 early termination fee and a $220 some-odd Miscellaneous Fee that one of their "Solutions Center Managers" cannot figure out.

If I was to put a dollar amount on what Qwest owes me, it would be $200 for the Deposit that was never refunded and an average of $45 a month for 19 months of overcharging the promised bundle price, or roughly $1050.00. Obviously, they will need to drop the collections activity as well.

Not_this_time
Centennial, Colorado
U.S.A.

Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on Qwest

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 03/19/2009 04:58 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Qwest-Communications-International/Denver-Colorado-80202/Qwest-Communications-International-Fails-to-honor-bundle-prices-adds-mysterious-unitemiz-435760. 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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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Author of original report

Qwest ripoff in collections

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

Phone call placed, third party letter sent. More to come!
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#2 Author of original report

(Another) Qwest debacle escalates to collections

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

This episode is now in Collections. It comes down to principle: If I have to spend another penny, cleaning up this mess, it will be to recoup my loss from Qwest.
I'm starting with a phone call first thing Monday morning.
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#3 Author of original report

(Another) Qwest debacle escalates to collections

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

This episode is now in Collections. It comes down to principle: If I have to spend another penny, cleaning up this mess, it will be to recoup my loss from Qwest.
I'm starting with a phone call first thing Monday morning.
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#4 Author of original report

(Another) Qwest debacle escalates to collections

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

This episode is now in Collections. It comes down to principle: If I have to spend another penny, cleaning up this mess, it will be to recoup my loss from Qwest.
I'm starting with a phone call first thing Monday morning.
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#5 UPDATE Employee

Thanks

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

I am the same "employee insider" as before. I'm glad you at least found the amount "Hope it'll be credited." Anyone who has a title starting in "solution center" isn't even a direct employee of Qwest. A solution center representative is a third party vendor of Qwest. I work in the main Denver headquarters actually "hence being anonymous." The solutions center may not be as able to credit charges of that magnitude due to those charges being sent to a direct Qwest manager for approval. Any bill adjustment which has been sent to collections will have a reference number for the adjustments. I hope you got one of those as well. If a manager did give approval of those early termination fees, then there would be an immediate seize on collections. Calling the primary number "1800-244-1111" is a better way to get resolution if this doesn't pan out.
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#6 UPDATE Employee

CALL IN

AUTHOR: Nh09 - (U.S.A.)

I don't know what happened with the $399 and that whole mess but if you have a early termination for your wireless call in to the customer service number. It is required to credit that off. Retail is not the best route to take on this one.
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#7 UPDATE Employee

CALL IN

AUTHOR: Nh09 - (U.S.A.)

I don't know what happened with the $399 and that whole mess but if you have a early termination for your wireless call in to the customer service number. It is required to credit that off. Retail is not the best route to take on this one.
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#8 UPDATE Employee

CALL IN

AUTHOR: Nh09 - (U.S.A.)

I don't know what happened with the $399 and that whole mess but if you have a early termination for your wireless call in to the customer service number. It is required to credit that off. Retail is not the best route to take on this one.
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#9 UPDATE Employee

CALL IN

AUTHOR: Nh09 - (U.S.A.)

I don't know what happened with the $399 and that whole mess but if you have a early termination for your wireless call in to the customer service number. It is required to credit that off. Retail is not the best route to take on this one.
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#10 Author of original report

There you have it

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

Almost two years and countless hours on the phone with Customer Service, over a month's worth of "personal" help from a Solution Center Manager to no avail, but post a Ripoff report and you get a retrospective offering on how one could have really straightened this all out in the beginning. That from an Employee Insider (a Solution Center Manager?) from the very community in which (I) sought help. The Spirit of Service lives!

Here's where it stands today, after another hour telling my story to 3 different departments. The mysterious $220 some-odd charge that they refused to name appears to have, in fact, been an early termination fee (in addition to the $200 charge they actually named an early termination fee). I was told it has been waived because it should not have been there in the first place. We will see when the next collections notice shows up.
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#11 UPDATE Employee

Advice

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

A lot of things I would have suggested is now looking into hindsight. The cancellation date of Qwest wireless deal is on 10/31/09. Customer do have an option to wait til the contract expires, or until the service expires, which is on 10/31/09, and switch to any company. Asking to itemize the charges is key. If a deal seems too basic and straightforward...there's probably something missing from it. Entry level sales rep are put on a high standard judged by revenue per hour and per call, so it is good to request as much detail about the monthly recurring charges as possible. The only Qwest service, which has no "extra charges" is Broadband, besides renting or purchasing a modem. Home phone service as on average $11 in tax. phone service averages at $40 for a phone plan w/o Long Distance, in 2006, DSL service was 26.99 to start, plus $5 for modem rental or $60 to purchase the modem.

That means Broadband and phone= $76.99 approx for land line+ DSL w/o Long Distance.

Cell Phone Service starts at about $43 with tax for a basic Qwest 500 minute plan in '06.

That adds up to $116.99 w/ tax approx for Internet, cell and landline with tax.

That's basically $99+ tax.

Extras you may of had:Text plan, data plan, insurance, long distance, higher speed of internet, extra land line features, modem rental, overage usage, pay-per use charges (Directory assistance, 3 way calling, continuous redial) Premier features (No solicitation, Anywhere Voicemail, Number forwarding, Caller ID w/ privacy plus) Or maybe an additional landline.

Any basic phone package includes 3 features such as Caller ID and Call waiting, but anymore may incur a charge.

Reviewing a bill and identifying all the needed items and items not needed is a good way to get the bill to the amount you want it.

It can be a hard task for reps to disclose and make it provide 100% understanding, since it took me a couple paragraphs to just touch the surface of possible things that may be needed to be disclosed on every order.

Qwest reps are more lenient on the first bill, since there is an assumption that some pieces of information did not have total understanding. If the first rep on that first bill doesn't handle the issue, along with giving a clear understanding of all charges, the next rep may do it better.

Once your a customer for over a year, there has been 12+ printed bills, with a summary of charges, along with expired promotions that may confuse less-tenured reps.

Always better to get everything resolved in the beginning rather than accomplishing small tasks on the billing in small fragments over an extended period of time.
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