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Is it fair that AT&T charges me an additional month after cancellation?

Discussion in 'AT&T' started by Daviddd, Mar 10, 2016.

  1. Daviddd

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    I canceled one of my AT&T lines on 11/28/2015. AT&T charged me two month bill after the cancellation. I have no question about the first month charge because I have used the line for two days within that cycle. However, the charge for the additional month was unreasonable. Because I didn't use any service in the second cycle.

    I have called AT&T customer service and also made a dispute with their dispute center late. They all admitted that AT&T charged me an additional month fee without providing any service. But they all responded that their charge was valid because it is the way AT&T makes billing.

    Is it fair that AT&T charges their customers in such a way? What can I do to get this issue resolved?

    Thank you in advance!

    Zhenqiang
     
    #1
  2. AAGK

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    I have had ATT for 15 years and it is a constant source of stress for me. Something is always wrong!!! I feel like I need to always call them. Good for you for your cancellation. I can't bring myself to pull the trigger. Unfortunately when you have cancelled You have less leverage. However, they may only charge what you owe. It is a pain, but have you gone through your bill for the past 6 months to confirm that you do not in fact owe this amount? Sometimes charges post to our bill late, but we may still be responsible for them. Is this possible?
     
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  3. AAGK

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    If in fact you have no idea what you have been charged for and a phone call escalated to a manager can't account for them, then just dispute them with your card. Since you switched providers then you put ATT in the position of no longer having leverage with you and it must explain itself.
    Also, on the phone with ATT, I constantly must tell the agent to speak slowly, bc they rattle off explanations that make no sense, probably from a script, and I have no idea what they are talking about. Don't let them off the hook until they actually make sense.
     
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  4. Daviddd

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    AT&T managers explained like this:
    On Oct 27-Nov 26 billing cycle, which was for service provided from Nov 27 to Dec 26 (AT&T bills customers in advance), AT&T had no way to know the line was cancelled (because it was cancelled on Nov 28). So, the money I paid for Oct 27-Nov 26 bill already covered the service from Nov 27 to Dec 26 (In fact, I have just used their service for two days. So I have no question to pay this bill). But on Nov 27 - Dec 26 billing cycle, AT&T knew the cancellation, so they processed and sent me another bill which I cannot understand because previous bill already covered all the service I used. Why did they bill me on service I never used? All the managers clearly see my point. But they still insisted the charge was "valid".
     
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  5. kenish

    Staff Member Advocate

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    I looked at AT&T's "Terms of Service" on their website. https://www.att.com/legal/terms.wirelessCustomerAgreement.html#whatChargesAmIResponsibleFor

    This may or may not be the terms that apply to you. Did you have a contract with only a few months left? You may have been billed for the remaining month because it was cheaper than the early termination fee.

    If you were month-to-month, there is a 30-day notice period. When you notify AT&T of cancellation, the cancellation takes effect 30 days later. If that falls in the next billing cycle, you owe for that month too! Nice little greedy thing they have set up, but that's the terms you probably agreed to.

    Now, for the good news! If you cancelled on Nov 28 and have proof, 30 days later is Dec 26, the last day of your billing period. Hence you should not be charged for the following billing period, Dec 27- Jan 26.

    Check your contract carefully...if the above dates are correct, point this out to AT&T. Contact them by email using the escalation process we recommend. Start with the first contact, wait a week, then go up one level. I agree the 30-day policy is very unfair, but don't bring this up in your letter- stick to the facts and keep opinion out of your email.

    For your reading enjoyment, here's a small part of AT&T's standard terms....

    Your Termination Rights.

    After the first 14 days, you may terminate your Agreement for any reason. However, you agree to pay AT&T for all fees, charges, and other amounts incurred and owed under your Agreement along with the applicable ETF. The Early Termination Fee is either: (a) $325 or (b) $150. The ETF reduces each full month of your Service Commitment that you complete. To determine whether your Equipment has a $325 Early Termination Fee or a $150 Early Termination Fee, and the amount of reduction, check att.com/equipmentETF.

    After your Service Commitment ends and you are on a month-to-month Agreement, you may terminate your Agreement at any time with 30 days notice without incurring an ETF.
     
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    Neil likes this.
  6. Daviddd

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    Thanks for your information.
    The line already met two-year contract by Nov 28. So it should not be the case. According to the explanation provided by several AT&T customer service persons, AT&T does not prorate the charge. So for the two-day use in cycle Nov 27 - Nov 28, they charged me a full month fee. I'm not happy about it, but it can be explained by AT&T customer service persons. But the charge from the next cycle can not be explained. Because the full month service fee has already been paid in previous cycle. How could it come out additional charge?
     
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  7. Daviddd

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    Thanks Kenish. Here is the answer to your previous questions:

    - You paid in advance for service from Nov 27-Dec 26 and cancelled during this period on Nov 28. You are OK with this.

    Yes, I did. I'm not happy because they didn't prorate it, but it's ok.

    - Sometime in late December, you received a bill. Instead of being a final "closing" statement, you were billed in advance for Dec 27- Jan 26.

    In next billing cycle, I received a "closing" statement with an additional charge of $29.76. I paid this bill also. Because I still have AT&T service in use for other lines.
     
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  8. Joe Farrell

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    T-mobile tried the same thing.

    I had no contract term with them - was month to month. My monthly anniversary was the 2nd of each month - the first person told me because I cancelled on the first that they could charge me for the full month - I pointed I a) did not have a term contract and b) my anniversary was the 2nd - not the first.

    Then they trotted out a cancellation penalty - which had no contract term to bind it to.

    Then I discovered it was a manually entered fee where someone just wanted to 2 months to likely pad a personal collections account.

    So yeah, it happens often apparently.

    The only LEGIT time you would get a bill is if they billed in arrears - so you would be billed for the month of January in February - but - given the collection efforts that would generate from angry customers who cancelled - the wireless companies went over to billing in advance a few years ago.
     
    #8
  9. kenish

    Staff Member Advocate

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    Thanks for confirming and commenting.....so, did you also read my comment about the 30-day advance notice? The way I understand their contract, Nov 28 + 30 days = Dec 26. You are under the wire by 1 day, and should not be billed for Dec 27 onward. (Had you contacted AT&T to cancel on Nov 29, then you'd owe that last month.)

    Contact AT&T using the email escalation process this site recommends.
     
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  10. Daviddd

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    Thanks everyone! Particularly thanks Christopher Elliot! With your help, the issue was resolved.

    Christopher called AT&T on behalf of me. Later on, AT&T dispute center called me again and said they would give me one-time refund. She told me the right way to cancel a line was like this: "Call AT&T customer service and ask them cancel a line on the exact end day of current billing cycle instead of any day between." According to the AT&T person, this is the only way that AT&T billing system can act right. Otherwise, it will cause the same problem again: Charge a full month for current cycle and in next billing cycle, it charge again. I asked why just correct billing system to make thing easier for both customers and AT&T? But she said that was beyond what she could do.
     
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