• Report: #970900
Complaint Review:

direct tv

  • Submitted: Sun, November 18, 2012
  • Updated: Fri, January 25, 2013

  • Reported By: shelva — mulberry Florida United States of America
direct tv
po box 6550 Internet United States of America

direct tv unauthorized draft, took thanksgiving from my family Internet

*Author of original report: In Hind Sight

*Consumer Comment: TY for Reminding Me of What I Should Have Done

*Consumer Suggestion: Direct TV nearly killed me doing the same thing.

*Consumer Comment: any time you post

*Consumer Comment: Any time you sign up for SATELLITE TV, either DIrectTV or Dish...

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I divorced my husband in 2006 and raised our children as a single mother. In 2011 my ex-husband became disabled and could no longer work.I allowed him to move in my home with our children. My exhusband wanted cable tv, cable was never a necessity for me I could not afford it. My ex-husband got a disability check and said he would pay the bill, he did all that on his own, I had nothing to do with it. On occasion, he would give me cash and I would make his cable payment with my Walmart money card. My paycheck goes direct deposit, on November 16, the week of Thanksgiving, direct tv took every dime from my Walmart card. I get paid every twe weeks so there will be no thanksgiving for my family. My water bill is due and it will be shut off. I will have to pay reconnect fees and late fees to have my water turned on. I pleaded with a direct tv supervisor to reverse the charge, as it is still pending. The response I got was I am sorry ma'am it will take 7-10 business days for the investigation. meanwhile I have no gas money to get to work, no money for basic necessities, all for a bill that is not my debt. This is a very cold and uncaring way to conduct business. I have seen complaints all over the internet that are similar to mine. How do they continue to get away with unauthorized transactions? I just want my money back. I have struggled with being between jobs and would have finally been able to see the light of day and now I am back at square one with struggling.. [continued below]....

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 11/18/2012 08:12 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/direct-tv/internet/direct-tv-unauthorized-draft-took-thanksgiving-from-my-family-internet-970900. 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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#1 Author of original report

In Hind Sight

AUTHOR: shelalderman - (United States of America)

I am happy to report that Walmart card services did refund my money. I didnt sign anything or authorize anything! My point was " how could they charge me when I didn't sign a contract with them" I wasnt here when the service was installed and had nothing to do with it.

In hind site I am happy to say that I learned a lesson from this. My family and I struggled through the hard times and came out ok by the grace of GOD. Lesson learned, never pay anyone's bill with my credit card as they are allowed to store your card information. And if I ever sign a contract I will read every single word of it!!!
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#2 Consumer Comment

TY for Reminding Me of What I Should Have Done

AUTHOR: JoleneAlaska - (United States of America)

My father is an attorney, how could I possibly have not read the entire DirectTV contract before signing? DirectTV's policies concerning late payments and early terminations are draconian! Even major, incurable disease causing sudden disability will NOT keep them from swooping in and taking every dime from your account, quickly placing your account with the most ruthless of collection agencies, and giving you no recourse. You signed the contract, you owe the money.

I really should have known better, but darn it, almost two years ago I had the bull by the horns, good prospects, and a few dollars in my pocket. I wanted the channels, and just knew that I would always be able to pay for them. I just signed after barely glancing at the contract. Since then my MS has flared dramatically and I have gone on disability, I will most likely be on a low fixed income for the rest of my life. I wish I had read your comments before I signed that that thing. DirectTV is making my life hell for $300 I simply don't have right now. The took the last $40 dollars I had in my account. I only found out AFTER I had make a trip to the bank to deposit $10 to make sure that a $50 check that I had written that day wouldn't bounce. It was Saturday after bank hours when I checked my account and saw a balance of $10, when I expected it to be $50. On Monday morning I called my bank to find out what happened to the $40, only to find out that DirectTV had taken it AND the $10 I had deposited the previous Friday. This was AFTER I had told DirectTV that I would agree to monthly payments starting the following month. Since then I have cancelled my debit card and gotten a new one attached to that account. I will treat THAT number like a military secret. From now on I'll use my Walmart pay-as-you-go debit card for ALL online bill payments and contracts like my one with DirectTV.

You have a great story and give great advice. I almost didn't read it - I tend to immediately dismiss anything that uses "your" when "you're" is the appropriate word. It's a pet peeve; it's not fair, but I always assume that anyone who can't keep their "theres" and "yours" straight is an idiot. Obviously, in your case that was an incorrect assumption, but I'm not alone in my little prejudice.
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#3 Consumer Suggestion

Direct TV nearly killed me doing the same thing.

AUTHOR: Really Smart Man - (United States of America)

    To set the record straight, I do not work for , have never worked for, and never ever will work for Direct TV,  however as my screen name implies I am "a smart man".  I do feel for you because Direct TV is doing this same scam to over 20,000 of their customers yearly, but they didn't "TAKE" your money, they didn't "STEAL" your money, YOU GAVE IT TO THEM FREELY AND WILLINGLY!

    I Really didn't want to tell you this but it is 100% true. Everything they did was outlined in the contract your ex signed when they installed the service, where they did bend the rules or laws was that he and you were married once. Now many states have a law that will take a new spouse and when your get married will take all old debts and combine them together with yours making you both responsible for the bills, however you need to get an attorney because you and your ex was already divorced separating you from his bills there after, so unless you were stupid enough to put your name on the contract with Direct TV, and your account is only in your name without your ex's on it, they cannot legally take your money and you can sue them for a lot more than what they took, but if you put your name on the contract then your screwed.

    When I wanted Direct TV service, long before contacting Direct TV, I checked them out on the internet and found all the people who have had their accounts drained dry by this company. After doing a little research I found it is because you people do not read the paperwork they have you sign when they install their service, and in fact the installer will attempt to get you to sign it quickly so you don't have time to read it all.

    A friend of mine is a Direct TV installer and I of course agreed to keep their name out of the things I post about Direct TV. This installer allowed me to photo copy the agreement sheets so I could read them completely before I called Direct TV to get it installed. ( I had to photo copy it because Direct TV requires the installer keep tract of all the contracts they have, eve3n to the point to make them return the contracts they make a mistake on, they mist account for each and every contract that Direct TV sends them.)

    I discovered that in the very long agreement forms it does clearly state that if you stop your Direct TV service before the agreed contract length, you ARE RESPONSIBLE to pay for the remaining payments due for the rest of the contract. Also if you cancel your service after the contract is up and before the contract auto-renews (they give you 30 days to cancel or it will renew automatically) but after that 30 days your again contracted for another same contract length, but if you do contact them to cancel in the 30 days you are required to return their equipment within 15 days.

    I checked and the return cost would have been $45 out of my pocket to return their equipment, but if when you cancel you ask them to send you a return kit, they will send you the boxes and labels to send everything back to them, however, they send the return kit via "delivery confirmation" so they know the day you get the return kit, from that day you have 15 days to get the equipment packed and taken to the post office and send it back to them.

    If you fail to get the return kit packed and shipped within the 15 days they have the right to charge your account for the total cost of the equipment and if you have two set boxes and remotes it will cost you $750.00 above any non paid contract you may have left.

    ALL OF THIS IS CLEARLY STATED IN THE SERVICE CONTRACT YOU SIGN! How ever the friend I have who installs Direct TV, told me that the classes they had to take for installation, pointed out they were to try to rush the customers into signing the service contract so they don't take the time to read all of it. They are also instructed not to mention the information on the contract, but most of all, they are shown that the signature line is on the front of the contract and all of this other information is on the back and they are instructed to not point out that their is a reverse side to the contract.

    Direct TV knows this information is lengthy and people typically do not read long contracts  and because they tell their installers not to tell the customers there is stuff on the back side of the contract and also tell them to rush the signing, this tells me they knowing and willingly attempt to trick you into signing it.

    This is illegal in some states, Wisconsin is one of them, however the way Wisconsin law is written, all they are required to tell the customer is that all the terms and conditions are on the service agreement. But they are not required to tell you it is on the back side of the contract.

    I looked into Direct TV on the stock exchange and found they typically make as much money as they do with their service, by charging customers the after costs they are not aware of owing.  It is no wonder they can offer more channels than other providers, it is simply because they make twice what the other companies make because of they service canceling terms on their contract.

    Well I finally called them to get service, they came out and did everything exactly as they are instructed to do, however whne the installer handed me the contract at the end of the installation, I told him I would need to take some time to read all of the contract before I sign it. he pointed out that the sales person would have told me everything , but as I told him "they were ready for their lunch so they went too fast for me to follow, so I needed to read all of it, they stood their as I read, and in a couple minutes they said they had other installations they needed to get to, and I replied that they should have scheduled their time to insure I had enough time to read everything. so I told him I would be right back and went to another room, where I took a black magic marker and crossed off all the extra cost sections on the back of the contract and by Wisconsin law I added that my job may need me to move and I was aware that Wisconsin law allows me to get out of long term contracts if I have to move.

     I returned to the room I left the installer in after taking nearly twenty minutes to make it look like I read everything, and with a smaller magic marker signed the contract, (to cover up the smell of the marker I used on the back) and because he was really in a hurry to get out of here he didn't look at the contract, he simply ripped off the last page and handed it to me telling me it was my copy.

    At the end of my contract I called to get the service turned off, then asked for a return kit, at first they told me they didn't do that but I told them that the contract stated that they would send me a return kit with postage paid labels, so they told me I would be getting one in the mail. I received the return kit packed it and took it to the post office the same day I got it and mailed it back to them. I asked for a receipt that it was sent on the day it was sent back, and waited.  I have a Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin address and Wisconsin Dells in the tourist season has 2.8 million people in it, but the rest of the year only has about 3,000 so if your not a tourist attraction, the USPS is nearly non-existant, so I knew it would take forever to send the packages back and because Direct TV doesn't want you to get the return kits back they do not put your address on the return section of the label, however to be sure it would returned to me and not just get lost, I put my address on the return label, however it was still a great probability it would take a very long time or maybe never to get it back to Direct TV.

    What I found out from the post office is that they will not guarantee the package with the postage they paid for, would get to them in 15 days, rather only would guarantee 20 days however the postage didn't carry any insurance or tracking information, if it happened to get mis-delivered or lost in the mail.

    Exactly 15 days and twelve minutes Direct TV charged my card $750.00 for un-returned equipment. Like you I am on limited income and I needed to get a prescription filled the next day but could not because there was no money on my debit card, the medicine was for my heart and by the next day I had to go to the hospital and get treated because I didn't have my medicine.  The emergency room Doctor told me I could have died if I had waited any longer and I told him to put that in his report.

    As you, I contacted Direct TV to get a refund and they refused, so I found a lawyer that took my case on consignment and he sent Direct TV the hospital emergency room bill and added $50,000.00 to it because the doctor said it could have killed me. Direct TV flat out refused the bills and told my attorney that I signed a contract that allowed them to do what they did and said that they still didn't have the returned equipment, then my attorney told them we would see them in court, so they added they would also add on all attorney fees and costs to my bill when I lost the case. My attorney hung up the phone and look at me an laughed when he said, they didn't do the same thing they bank on you not doing, they didn't read the back of the contract you signed.

    Well we went to court and my attorney insisted to see their copy of the service contract I signed and they never looked at the back of the contract to see that the section they said I agreed to was blacked out, they tried to say that I could not do that but the judge told them Wisconsin law does allow for it and I was in the right because they accepted the contract, and that he could see a full court case and said it would go to regular court to be decided on.

   Well, their attorney, after finding they didn't have a leg to stand on, offered to settle before regular court. My attorney stated that they had our demands but the judge, (later it was found that he was also taken by Direct TV) told the Direct TV attorney that he felt that what we wanted was not enough and that he would accept the counter offer from Direct TV only if it was $75,000.00 or better.

    After the attorney and the Direct TV rep talked and the rep pounded the table a few times and their attorney yelling at them back they agreed to pay the $75,000.00 in one lump check, the judge agreed to drop the case at that point with the stipulation I didn't have any problem cashing their check.

    So they would have got me as well, but if they took your money, it is because you didn't read all of the contract before you signed it, so they didn't take your money, you gave it to them.  I agree that this type of business is unethical however it is totally legal.

    If you are still mad at Direct TV, contact your law makers in your state ad demand they do something about this way of doing business, it is the only way that you can put a stop to the way many businesses today are taking our money with the use of this kind of "contracts" and with "No Risk guarantees", and "Risk Free Trials", which all rely on the lazy public not reading everything before jumping into a money exchange or buying something that they think they can get their money back on, but find that it is next to impossible to do so.

    HERE IS MY ADVICE TO ALL TRANSACTIONS WITH ALL COMPANIES.  Several stores sell debit cards for around $5, What we do now is, every recurring bill we have with anyone, Phone, Cable, Internet, Gas, Electric, and so on, we have a separate debit card for each one and that debit card is only used for that one thing only, that way we can place the payment on the card when it is due and they can take it when they want, but only the amount we place on it. No one, except us, has our main paycheck card number so they cannot take any money from it we do not let them take, by when we do a money transfer to the only card they have the number for.  Because we do not ever know when we will need to set up an account with someone, we keep two debit cards that are not setup for anyone as yet so if we need to set up an account in a short time, we simply pull out one of the un-assigned cards and give that number to that account, then we write in magic marker on the card what account it is for and how much the payments will be and when so we just go threw our debit cards and make transfers to them as we need to effectively keeping our main paycheck debit card totally private and our money is always safe from unethical businesses pulling every trick in the book to get their hands on our money.

    And to think we might have had a Republican as president which would have made this business practice even more wide spread. To even think of putting a republican into an office to overlook a democratic country is almost as dumb as letting businesses have a direct link to your paycheck by letting them have your paycheck debit card number.

    If you don't use this method of a separate debit card for each recurring bill account, for your bills, your even more stupid than you were when you allowed Direct TV to take the money you let them take but didn't know they really would take it.
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#4 Consumer Comment

any time you post

AUTHOR: The Outlaw Josey Wales - (United States of America)

expect a useless rebutt from kenny
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#5 Consumer Comment

Any time you sign up for SATELLITE TV, either DIrectTV or Dish...


You agree that the method of payment you used to sign up can be used to collect any monies due them.

This will also happen when you use your card to make his payments.

Looks like you're blaming the wrong ones, it's your ex incurring unneeded expenses for you.

"I have seen complaints all over the internet that are similar to mine. How do they continue to get away with unauthorized transactions?"

Sadly, for you, they are NOT unauthorized. Perhaps it's time to review your situation with your live in ex.

Good luck to you.

NO, I DON'T work for DirectTV, I don't even like them very much.

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