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Top Carriers Hit With Lawsuits

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Jul 7, 2006, 6:40 PM   by (staff)

A class action lawsuit was filed against Cingular today in federal court in Seattle. The suit alleges Cingular degraded the service of AT&T customers in the process integrating the two networks, and forced them to pay unfair fees to switch to Cingular service. The suit also takes Cingular to task for charging AT&T customers an early termination fee if they wanted to leave after the level of service was degraded. Cingular claims the suit "completely without merit." Verizon too has been hit with a class action lawsuit, as charges against the company for adding roadside assistance to customers' bills without their knowledge have now reached a federal court.

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Jul 11, 2006, 5:43 PM

CONTRACTS and LIES!!!!!!!!!!!

i switched to cingular about 2 years ago from sprint - and i couldnt be HAPPIER with how this contract stuff works! i was on a two contract for FOUR years with sprint! anytime i wanted to up my minutes, lessen my texting, remove insurance, add insurance, buy a new phone, get my phone insurance replacement - u name it: sprint added time to my contract for it. i've changed my plan and extras countless times and my contract NEVER got "upped!"

also my wife just switched over from AT&T about 7 months ago, SHE was still on contract with AT&T and we never saw a switch or cancellation fee. i even heard ((not sure how true)) that it wasnt really a merger, but AT&T wireless was bought out before bankruptcy. so instead of AT&T wireless folks ta...
no replies? i guess no one can say anything in contrast. i'm still happy with em and as long as they keep this up ((which so far they are)) i'll be sticking with them for good!

Jul 7, 2006, 8:17 PM

I don't get it...

If service with Cingular is so bad...then how has their churn rate been cut in half since the merge? And how does it continue to drop?

I was happy with AT&T...I'm just as happy with Cingular.
the rate is better with verizon
😈 Thats because Verizon locks you in contract after contract want to change your plan contract extension, want to upgrade your phone contract extension, bla bla bla, need help with your phone you need a new one so lets add another contract on ...

Jul 10, 2006, 7:43 AM

Question for... well anyone...

Cingular was legacy TDMA 800 MHz before they rolled out GSM 850Mhz in my market. When I was up for renewal back in 2003 which when this happened, I was told I had to pay an upgrade fee on top of the price of the phone with renewal.

My question is, why are they charging me (existing cust) an additional upgrade fee if new customers were only paying the price of phone with contract???? Why should I have to pay an "upgrade fee" if I'm renewing and it wasn't my fault that they "upgraded"???? 👿
The upgrade fee isn't "an additional" fee... it applies to all customers upgrading regardless of what technology they are coming from.
New customers also pay an activation charge, which by the way is double what you'd pay to upgrade...
The upgrade fee is an unnecessary fee that Cingular charges because it can. Whatever anyone else on here tells you, it's not a necessary fee and not every company charges it. All it requires to upgrade is a quick scan-in of the phone, changing your co...
Unfortunately, whether you are a Cingular or former ATT customer, or a customer on most any other carrier, all require you to pay an upgrade fee anytime you upgrade to a new device. Sometimes this is waived depending on the promotion but almost all h...

Jul 7, 2006, 7:01 PM

too funny

“Cingular has displayed an arrogance which sends the message that their market share is more important than their customers,” said Bruce Simon of the Cotchett, Pitre, Simon & McCarthy law firm in Los Angeles


no one is supposed to know that Cingular is arrognat.. 🤣
been waiting on this one
what would a major company be if they didnt believe their sh!t didnt stink?

vzw does it,
sprint-nextel does it,
name one that doesnt.

Jul 7, 2006, 9:11 PM

In Cingular's defense...

You've got to remember that what Cingular was doing was trying to get people off the TDMA system and onto GSM. I don't blame them for not wanting to put any more money into the archeological specimen which is their TDMA system.
Service didn't degrade just for TDMA customers. In the process of merging the AT&T and Cingular networks, old AT&T GSM customers' service degraded significantly because their phones were looking for AT&T towers but there were less and less available d...

Jul 8, 2006, 11:45 AM

Roadside assistance!!

Hahaha, I remember the good ol days of explaining why customers bills had a 2.99 charge for roadside assistance while I was working for Cingular. Was it the same with Verizon? Free for a month before they charged them on the 31st day?
yeah the corp store down by me was famous for this I received 100's of customers over the years that stopped in or were upgrading and when i went over their plan they had no clue they had that on their account. It ticked a lot of people off, I think t...
Yeah I just upgraded a cingular customer the other day, and the system automatically adds it for 30 days free, and you have to call to cancel it if you don't want it. So if you don't tell the customer...

The only thing I think is dumb is that you h...
I don't know about Verizon, but at Sprint it was part of your commisionable revenue. I got about %95 of my customers on roadside rescue, internet, pictures, voice command and anything else that was fee for the first month.

Then I had them initia...
When I was doing my Cingy gig we attached RA with every post activation and upgrade. I don't feel bad for my old customers because we had explained that they would be charged after 30 days and had them initial next to it on their contract. If they nee...

Jul 12, 2006, 12:18 PM

It's all Corporate's Fault

see..it all starts with corporate....
of course they are in it for money..that's obvious and understandable...however...with dealing with agent locations that make it so difficult to hit the numbers they want for features for the agent locations...therefore the agent locations are having scheme customers and add features (the free first month features)...so they can hit the numbers that corporate wants for the agent stores. This is true because i work for an agent location....so yeah the corporation should get sued and maybe they wil change their ways
oh and by the way i never add features on accounts without the customer knowing but...it has crossed my mind a few times

Jul 12, 2006, 9:46 AM

What people fail to realize

Is that no matter what company buys out who, this type of thing will always be a scapegoat for people who are just looking to complain and make a fast buck.Look for the next lawsuit to come from customers of Sprint/Nextel saying they had great service until so and so took them over! Um!!! two different networks there!!!! While in reality, they buyout more than likely had no real impact on their service. Plus if they read their old contracts, which people like to cite so much, they would realize that the carriers do not guarantee coverage all of the time, and they reserve the right to terminate service in various circumstances. Also, kudos(sarcastic) to you customers who never really fully read your bill and fail to realize when a change is c...

Jul 8, 2006, 5:38 PM

AHAHAHA WTF!!!? Are you serious!?

Ok so I understand the Verizon lawsuit, because I'm just not surprised about it. They suck. But seriouisly, there is no support for this. I work for cingular and merge AT&T customers every day. In fact we wave just about every fee possible, and there is never a cancelation fee. They get a better phone, new sim card, new data network. This just makes me laugh trying to understand where these people are coming from. A lot of times also the AT&T customers are available to get a $20 bill credit for each phone they merge. I'm sorry this is just to entertaining for me, and its sad that the lawsuit is even coming up because even if its not true its not going to look good for anyone.
when I had at&t they wanted to charge me an EFT so i told them to eat a dkic(switch the middle two letters) then they all of the sudden waved it 😛
Tell me about it...the new 'VIP' Upgrade system works better for the ATTWS customers than Cingular's Upgrades. $20 bill credit, PLUS i've $100 rebates on SLVRS and RAZRS ONLY for ATTWS, and then the 200 extra minutes a month....they're getting screwe...
It's still the idea that cell phone companies are throwing around money and buying up the competition to eliminate them instead of earning the trust and business of customers with good service. Verizon was on a buy-out path for a while and made thems...

Jul 10, 2006, 12:36 PM

VW Employees...suck!

See i think that VW deserves to sued. Think about how many people just add verticals/features on customer accounts just so they can get bonus and SPIFFS....VW was bad at this and so was sprint. VW needs to crack down on these sales people. Dont blame the customer that gets screwed over in the long run...but the nasty sales reps that try to take advantage of naive customers. Not every customer that comes into a store is knowledgeable about everything...thats what the sales rep is for.
"Think about how many people just add verticals/features on customer accounts just so they can get bonus and SPIFFS....VW was bad at this and so was sprint"

For one it's illegal to add features to a customers account if they are not aware of it. So...
Silver Starfire

Jul 7, 2006, 10:09 PM

Suncom too?

Does this also include the Suncom customers who were forced to switch to Cingular because when the merge happened Suncom left the area?

Will we be notifed or something? I loved Suncom's minutes and had to go to a Cingular plan when they left the area. Ended up just cancelling Cingular down the line...
did suncom tell you you have to get a cingular phone?

or did everyone who had suncom just go get cingular because they felt cingular was better?

Jul 9, 2006, 9:41 PM

Don't Expect Much

Even if the plaintiff's win these legal actions, since they are class action, the consumer will lend up with squat! The lawyers will win big but what will actually be given back to Joe Consumer? Certificates of discount on new service or something lame like that not really worth moose piss? Hide and watch boys & girls as the legal dudes make off with the lion share of the booty and us poor schmucks end up with little or nothing. I have been the "recipient" of many class action lawsuits and what we the consumer ends up getting is SCREWED!

Jul 8, 2006, 8:39 AM

Burn in hell Cingular...

Thats all.
haha... good call

Jul 9, 2006, 3:12 PM

don't feel sorry for customers

After selling phones for 2 years and dealing with customers... I don't feel bad for the people who declined to read their contract and just signed it because they "trusted" the sales rep in the mall with "mobile systems" on all of their contracts. For the customers who read their contracts and declined the roadside assistance but were still signed up by the sales rep (indirect or not).... call customer care and complain to them, just don't yell at a random sales rep who has no idea who you are.
Huh? This isn't about feeling sorry for those who dont read contracts, its about those who would make gay contracts with loop holes and try and burn customers when they have money losses to make up for.

Jul 7, 2006, 6:47 PM

How Unsurprising

Considering the level of complaints this site receieved from customers expierencing the exact same scenarios as the article outlined, I'm not surprised by this one bit.

Cingular immediately began dismantling and degrading the AT&T network, forcing the latter’s customers to move to Cingular’s cell network.

As a result, according to plaintiffs, customers had to buy new phones, move to higher-cost plans, and, in some cases, pay an $18 transfer or upgrade fee. The suit said some customers who tried to go to another company were hit with early termination fees of $175, while others who didn’t want to or couldn’t pay the fees were forced to ride out their contract with AT&T Wireless while suffering poor to no reception.
Here are some links to discussions among reps talking about ETF's, forced migrations, degredation of service, and just about every issue raised in the lawsuit.

Forcing Customer's to Migrate to Cingular
https://www.phonescoop.com/carriers/forum.php »...

Jul 8, 2006, 3:24 PM

In neithers defense...

they both deserved it.
WhAt aN aGeNt

Jul 7, 2006, 9:28 PM


I know that big corps might sometimes do things that aren't right but.....I don't think that they deliberately manipulated the "signal bar".......what are your thoughts?
I wouldn't put it past them, they have and continue to do worse.
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