• Report: #406155
Complaint Review:


  • Submitted: Tue, December 30, 2008
  • Updated: Mon, May 04, 2009

  • Reported By:Baltimore Maryland
Houston, Texas Nationwide U.S.A.

Questia Human error = $$ for Questia Houston Texas

*Consumer Comment: Questia claims they are like a mortgage company, or cable, etc.--not the same

*UPDATE Employee: Questia Customer Support is fair company with fair business practices.

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Questia is an online library. It has various subscription plans. Two years ago, I opted for a yearly plan. When you subscribe to Questia, you can't just subscribe for only one year and that's that. They force you to enter a perpetual agreement that is renewed every year, and is billed by Questia withdrawing from your bank account without telling you. This perpetual subscription can only be stopped if you cancel. (At least that was the case based on the subscription plans available when I subscribed two years ago.) The cost was $100 per year. I subscribed to Questia for two years.

A few days ago, I checked my bank account and saw that Questia had again withdrawn from my bank account three days earlier, without informing me by e-mail either before or after the fact.

Now I did not want to renew my Questia subscription, but being a human being, I forgot to cancel. After all, the withdrawal only comes around once a year and Questia does not inform you that they're about to bill you. They're pretty sneaky.

So, I called to cancel and get a refund. The customer service person cancelled my account. As to the refund, however, she said I needed to e-mail the resolution department. So, I did e-mail the resolution department. Their response was prefabricated and completely unpersonal. They offered me what they call a $50 courtesy, "pro-rated" refund. I responded saying I still wanted a full refund, and I requested for the number of someone to speak with personally. The department responded with an e-mail, half of which was a cut and paste job from their first e-mail to me, basically saying "no" to my requests.

Sure, Questia's agreement allows them to do what they have done. But you have to admit, it's pretty deceptive. Basically, Questia quietly withdraws money from their customer's accounts and relies on their customers' forgetfulness to keep their subscriptions going. Then when customers ask for a refund, they say, "Oh, but you agreed to this!"

Baltimore, Maryland

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 12/30/2008 09:03 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/questia/nationwide/questia-human-error-for-questia-houston-texas-406155. 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 Consumer Comment

Questia claims they are like a mortgage company, or cable, etc.--not the same

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

My mortgage company, cable company, etc. etc. send me a bill every time. They don't just charge me without notice.
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#2 UPDATE Employee

Questia Customer Support is fair company with fair business practices.

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

You can cancel your subscription at any time by sending an email, calling in, using our live help/ chat feature, requesting your Account be cancelled or you can cancel the service online yourself through the MY ACCOUNT link. When cancelled your account will be active until the end of your billing cycle then it will returned to a standard free preview account and any items in your account will be saved. Once your cancellation request has been received Questia will send you a confirmation email to the email address we have on file.

Always check your junk mail folder to make sure you have received the email. Follow the appropriate instructions and confirm the cancellation. Make sure you receive an e-mail confirming the cancellation for your records. If you do not receive this email please contact us at the number listed below to make sure your account has been canceled. If you do not wish to be billed on your next renewal date send your cancellation request at least 48 hours prior to your next billing date (displayed in the My Account link once you have Signed Into your Account).

Please note that we do not schedule cancellations, your cancellation will take effect upon receipt of your confirmation email.

Questia's website specifically states that all account automatically renewed until cancelled. Nothing is predatory or misleading about the billing or our account practices. The account set up is no different than cable, internet, gym, cellular service, rent even home mortgage service. The service is not based upon usage but access. Even if you do not use these services or step foot in your residence for a period of time you have agreed to pay for the services until cancelled or the contract is fulfilled.

It is also stated in the user agreement that you have to agree to before you can even use the website that, 'Cancellation of a subscription will take effect at the end of the current billing period and will not result in a refund.' You were billed because of the contract you entered into with us by subsequently agreeing to the user agreement in which it is stated in the 2nd section of the subscriber agreement (Subscription Billing, Termination, and Cancellation) "You agree to pay all fees in effect when incurred, plus applicable taxes or other charges. Fees and charges are non-refundable. " So any refund offered to a customer by our resolution department is as a courtesy, since it is clearly stated that all accounts will renew and all fees are nonrefundable.
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