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Report: #94164

Complaint Review: Z-Tel Communications - Tampa Florida

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  • Updated:
  • Reported By: Covington Louisiana
  • Author Not Confirmed What's this?
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  • Z-Tel Communications 601 S. Harbour Island Blvd., Suite 220 Tampa, Florida U.S.A.

Z-Tel Communications ripoff fake telephone company Tampa, Atlanta, Atmore Florida, Georgia, Alabama

*UPDATE Employee: SWITCHING PHONE SERVICE...NOT SO SIMPLE!

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Is Z-tel a real telephone company? Yes, as long as you do not mind paying for services that this fake company never provided.

I briefly moved to Richmond, VA. I needed a local/long-distance phone company. Z-tel was recommended by Dominion Power Co. in a utilities relocation service.

I was given a date that the company was suppose to connect my home service. It was never connected. So, I called Z-Hell. The company lied about the connection date. They said that they could not guarantee the date that was quoted via Dominion's relocation service. Later, I found out that this was just the beginining of the Z-Tales.

The biggest lie (besides the constant fake connection dates) was that the company was located in VA. Wrong!!! After the fact, I found out that the company is really in FL, GA and AL.

They falsely claim to be a "local" telephone company. I even asked point-blank, "Are you in Richmond?" They said, "Yes." Unfortunately, I believed them. About a month later, I found out that they do not even have an office in VA.

Another big lie is that they send out a technician to connect the service. They lie sooooo much that they cannot even remember the other lies that they feed you in previous phone calls. For example, in one phone call, they claim that they sent a tech. In another, they claim that he will be at your home in "two" days. The funny thing is that my apartment office never saw anyone or talked to anyone from Z-Tel to make the connection to the outside phoneboxes.

When Z-Hell realizes that you are tired of the fake connection dates, they claim that your phone jacks are bad. So, you need to replace them or have them serviced. They let you know that your lack of phone service is not their problem!!

Luckily, I had the apartment personnel check the outside box with a voltage meter and check all of the phone jacks. The result was that the line was not active. I told Z-Hell this and demanded to speak to a supervisor. The supervisor is never available. He/she also never returns your calls.

Never fear, the bill comes away. I told them to cancel the service that I never received. I also demanded a refund for the connection fee. They refused to do this.

Now Z-tel has turned me into a collection agency for $257.62. The collection agency claims that they have bills from Z-Tel. I can't wait to see them. The phoneline was never connected. A month later, I had to move to New Orleans, LA.

As far as I am concerned, Z-Tel is not even a real phone company. They also owe me $70.00 for a fake connection fee.

Jessica
Covington, Louisiana
U.S.A.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 06/08/2004 07:00 PM and is a permanent record located here: https://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/z-tel-communications/tampa-florida-33602/z-tel-communications-ripoff-fake-telephone-company-tampa-atlanta-atmore-florida-georgia-94164. 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. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
0Author
1Consumer
0Employee/Owner

#1 UPDATE Employee

SWITCHING PHONE SERVICE...NOT SO SIMPLE!

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

POSTED: Tuesday, October 12, 2004

First of all, I would like to state that Z-tel has offices in several locations. However, they are not "local" offices such as Sprint or other Bell companies have where you walk in and pay your bill. They do have switching centers, billing centers, etc.

Secondly, most people have no understanding of how local/long distance companies operate. We are very fortunate to have these companies and there are few of them that can offer local and long distance packages outside of the "Bell Companies". Thanks to deregulation, the Bell companies were forced to let go of their monopolies! Whenever there is a monopoly, the consumer pays the demanded price if they want service! These companies,such as Z-tel and Lightyear can offer discounted services because they do not have offices in every city with 100's of employees on their payroll. They do have independent agents who are paid commission only to enroll new customers for service.

Thirdly, several problems can arise in obtaining service through one of these companies:
1. "Bell" owns the lines and services the lines
a.They may not release your phone line to be
switched right away.
b. Service issues are many times related to
"Bell's" unwillingness to lose you as a
customer. They do have a high overhead to
pay, after all!
2. Not all areas are able to receive service
with these companies.
a. Some areas do not yet have an agreement
with "Bell" to provide service. It's
usually a matter of time.
b. Also, if you do not currently have service
with a "Bell" company, you may not be able
to switch until you sign up first with a
"Bell" company. (Remember, deregulation
has to do with the "Bell" monopoly.)
c. Some areas are owned by private companies
who will not allow other companies in to
bring competition. Z-Tel has no authority
to change that.
3. These companies must pay a fee to "Bell" for
use of the lines.
a. Connection fees are actually "Bell's" fees
b. Maintenance charges are "Bell's".

To respond to this persons dilemma, the above info should help in understanding some of the issues at hand. Most of the issues are simply not understanding how the systems work.
Yes, Z-Tel is in several states but they don't have walk in offices.
Who is the initial service with? Is it a"Bell" company? If not, refer to 2.b. and start over.
The tech's that service your area are not Z-Tel techs. "Bell" uses their techs, that's the agreement. Z-Tel was only passing on the info they had been given by the customers phone company previous to Z-Tel.
If you are told that your phone jacks are bad, you should ask who the servicing agent works for! It's not Z-Tel. The lack of servicability is not due to Z-Tel, it's "Bell". And it's all a part of the games to keep you as a customer.
If you have received bills from 2 separate phone companies for local/long distance service, the dates of service should be reviewed. It's illegal to be charged for 2 services to the same phone number at the same time. I recommend contacting the initial phone company if this happens and state the date you began service with another company.
Also, check the current phone bill for charges to validate the authenticity of the charges. If the calls are valid, you pay.
Note that your utility credit report can be affected making it difficult to get new service if you have unpaid utility bills.

I hope this helps people to get at least a glimpse into the phone switching world. Don't always assume the worst of the company you're trying to switch to. Most delays and problems are coming from the company that has control of the lines, usually "Bell"

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