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Sprint Receives Preliminary Approval to Settle ETF Claims

Article Comments  28  

Dec 10, 2008, 2:43 PM   by Eric M. Zeman

Sprint has received preliminary approval from a New Jersey court to settle pending lawsuits over early termination fees. The total settlement amounts to $17.5 million and would cover cases across the country, though it excludes plaintiffs based in California. A separate case there is seeking $1 billion in damages, and is exempted from the ruling made by the judge in NJ. A California judge has already declared that Sprint's ETF policies were illegal between 1999 and 2007. Sprint has since changed its ETF policy.

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Dec 11, 2008, 12:07 AM

Say goodbye to discounted phones...

I seriously think this is the end of discounted phones or at least a way to give customers more options.

At the max, Sprint and other carriers will start showing consumers how much phones really cost. Charge people full prices and there will be no more ETF's to worry about. But then, I think people will keep phones a lot longer than they used to. At the minimum, they will give folks the option of having a discounted phone or a subsidized one with a pro-rated 2-year contract.

I don't agree with this decision...If folks wanted a phone without a contract, there is prepaid. A lot of the cellular companies offer prepaid phones right in their store. The only thing I think is illegal and unethical is extending the contract for changing the p...
i def agree with you on the changing rate plan and ge hit with an extention....seen that numerous times.
JeffdaBeat said:
I seriously think this is the end of discounted phones or at least a way to give customers more options.

At the max, Sprint and other carriers will start showing consumers how much phones really cost. Charge pe

Dec 10, 2008, 4:35 PM

This just isn't right!!!

I don't care what carrier it is. This settlement is way out of line. The customer's should accept part of the blame. Afterall, they signed the agreement. It just goes to show that a contract is only as worth the amount of the paper it was printed on.
I hope Sprint gets sued for every penny. I read a post that an 8yr customer could not get pro-rated. Cus he re-signed before the effective date. I never would have singed up to Sprint would I have known Windows Mobile picture mail was non existant &...
cell phones are evil

Dec 10, 2008, 2:58 PM

Question for anyone who knows?

I'm curious about this what part of the early termination fee's did they say were illegal? Was it the fact they weren't prorated or enforced without cause? Just seems this is a hefty settlement.
I was wonder the same thing but the source artical never says what was changed in 07 that no longer makes it illegal. There must have been something with Sprint and VZW term fees. Also not sure how VZW settles for $21 mill and Sprint gets hit up for...
Not that it matters. The whole reason around the whole etf thing is coverage related things. I fyou sign up for service and have coverage in your house, then it changes and you don't cell phone companies still charge an etf. Sprint won't get rid of...

Dec 11, 2008, 12:15 PM


what is this going to do sprint financially??? 👀

Dec 10, 2008, 3:40 PM

i completely disagree!!!!!

Im not saying this just because i work for sprint, I completely disagree about the whole lawsuit. Cellphone providers pay good money for the phones they give away at discounted prices. The etf fees are whats used to recuperate the initial loss at the point of sale. Besides, their explained when you activate! How do you not understand 6 months down the road? I think the only way these etf fees should be waived is if the consumer brings the phone back in looking the same way it did when it left. They offer carrying cases to keep phones looking good. Is that asking a little too much?
This is why listing phones as "free" is a mistake.

I think all phones should list with the full retail cost first, and then list the amount you save by signing a 2 year agreement.

Too many customers seem to assume that the phone really is free (...
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