On Jan 5, 2013, I arranged an on-line payment of my telephone bill to Verizon. By mistake, rather than the $54.57 due, I overpaid to the amount of $6742.24. The payment was made electronically and cleared my bank account on Jan 7, 2013.
On Jan 21, 2013 I noticed the error while reviewing my bank statement on-line. Even though this hefty (>$6000) overpayment was made two weeks earlier, Verizon never called to notify me. I called Verizon; the customer service representative was pleasant but had no record that any payment was made. No amount had been credited to my Verizon account since my previous routine monthly payment in December.
On the same day, I filed a request with the bank on-line bill pay service to help recover the money. They confirmed that the electronic payment had been made to Verizon on Jan 7th. and they contacted Verizon with routing information and my checking account information in order to reverse the charges.
I spoke routinely with the bill pay representative from the bank. As of Jan 29, 2013, she was still waiting on a response from Verizon, who claimed to be doing "research".
On Jan 30, I called Verizon Financial Services for an update. According to my account file, there was no record that the bank had even contacted them - and still no record that any payment had been made to my account.
On Jan 31, I spoke in person to the bank Bill Pay representative handling my account. She was working directly with a contact at Verizon and HAD provided all the information that they needed - when and how the payment was sent, the amount, data, account number, etc. She contacted them every 3 days and was consistently told they were "still researching" the issue.
On Feb 1, the bank Bill Pay representative requested that the issue be elevated to a supervisor level at Verizon.
On Feb 6, I received a phone message from Verizon stating that they hadn't received any communication from my bank regarding the issues and were going to close out the complaint on my account.
Multiple phone calls to Verizon (and the bank bill pay representative) ensued, with more of the same result.
The bank representative was persistent (thank goodness) and Verizon ultimately sent a check to the bank on Feb 19, 2013. That was fully 6+ weeks after the $6742 payment was made.
While I take responsibility for the original mispayment, the subsequent lack of notification, run-around by Verizon denying that they had the money, some kind of secret department handling this issue (since none of it ever was revealed in my customer file), and apparent stalling tactics preventing the return of my money was criminal. If it hadn't been for a terrific account representative with the bank online billpay support unit, I fully believe I still would not have recovered the money.
I found a RipOff report from 1/25/2008 (Cathy from Shrewsbury, PA) that sounded remarkably similar to my experience. Is this a Verizon standard protocol when a large overpayment is made - deny receiving the money and stonewall the customer in hopes that they will just go away?
Verizon will never again have my business.