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Poor DirecTV customer "service" in action


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43 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   Heisenberg

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 02:49 AM

So I'm checking my account online a couple of days ago and I see to my surprise that I have a balance of roughly $470 and a rather expensive line item: "HD DVR NRF."

Immediately I think of the dead HD DVR I've had in the garage for, I don't know, maybe six months to a year. At the time I replaced it I told DirecTV I would like to return it, but they told me they wouldn't accept it because it was "owned" as opposed to "leased" equipment. I don't quite understand the difference as I thought all the equipment was leased.

A few months ago, my wife calls me at work and tells me she's cleaning out the garage and she wants to toss the dead DVR receiver. I tell her "Don't you dare," because even though I was told they don't want it, I know better than to trust a company about an expensive leased piece of equipment. She calls DirecTV, and they tell her the same thing -- they don't want it. Always paranoid, I convince her to keep it anyway, just in case.

Then the charge shows up. Fortunately, I happened to have two return kits in house so I boxed up the DVR. (The back story: a couple of weeks ago, my H20-600 died in the study and DirecTV sent me a return kit. However, a few days later I reconsidered my initial decision to leave the study dark and called and asked for a replacement receiver, which they sent, also with a return kit. So I had two return kits in house.) I took the H20 and the DVR to FedEx on Friday.

However, the CSR I talked to said they can't remove the charge until the DVR arrives. I explained that I was told in the past they didn't want it, and they didn't send me a return kit at the time, but this didn't seem to matter. Furthermore, he couldn't even tell me the model number or access card number of the DVR that had been flagged as a non-return (I've returned two before this one -- one that died and a replacement that was also defective).

The main reason I'm concerned is that I have DirecTV bundled with my phone company, and DirecTV will be forwarding billing information to the phone company sometime this week -- meaning I will owe my phone company an extra $470. Even if I am eventually credited by DirecTV, I still will have to advance nearly $500 extra to my phone company to avoid having a balance with them.

The two CSRs I've talked to Friday and Saturday say there's nothing they can do. There's nothing their supervisors can do, etc., etc.

But what really galls me is that DirecTV made no attempts to contact me -- no e-mail, no letter, no phone call -- before suddenly tacking on $470 to my bill. I've been a customer for four years, never paid my bill late, subscribe to premium channels, Sunday Ticket, never had a serious issue and have been pretty happy with DirecTV -- and then they do this.

I'm not even confident that the DVR I returned is the one they want and that my account will be credited. And they don't seem to care what I tell them and seem only mildly interested in helping me.

I'm going to call my phone company Monday and attempt to "unbundle" to beat the bill from DirecTV and avoid situations like this -- besides, as much as I'd hate to do it I'm so angry that I'm seriously considering dumping DirecTV over this experience as soon as football season is over (I'd dump them now if I hadn't already paid for Sunday Ticket).

So now it's a race to see if the DVR gets there before they bill my phone company. And that's assuming it's the one they want. I'll tell you how it goes if anyone out there cares :). Thanks for listening.

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#2 OFFLINE   joshjr

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 03:17 AM

One option would be to speak with the access card department to find out if maybe they can tell which reciever is flagged. If you by chance have the reciever id or the card number for the one you sent back they should be able to tell something.

#3 OFFLINE   Taltizer

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 03:52 AM

http://www.directv.c...60016#h:689.811

May take less than 24 hours before a customer advocate will call you and help you with your situation.Hope this helps

#4 OFFLINE   Jackru

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 04:48 AM

This is just crazy. I can understand your frustration. I believe we do need a consumer bill of rights in this country to reduce these egregious mistreatment of consumers. They give you faulty information and want you to be responsible to pay for their mistake. I can clearly see why you would want to ditch them.

I have never had this happen before, but from dealing with them over the years I am not the least bit surprised by your aggravating story.

Good luck and hope everything works out ok.

#5 OFFLINE   wilbur_the_goose

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 06:39 AM

They've done this to a lot of us, including me. They billed me $999 for an "unreturned" HR10-250 a few years ago. Never returned the money either - they decided to credit my account instead once they acknowledged they screwed up.

Thank gawd I saved my FedEx receipt!

Their return department should be completely overhauled ASAP.

#6 OFFLINE   TBlazer07

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 07:38 AM

I believe a return box is tied to a specific piece of equipment. The return shipping label refers to the specific receiver that is SUPPOSED to go back. By using a box from a different receiver you might REALLY confuse them. They may log it in as the wrong receiver not the one you sent back making it an even more f'd up mess.

#7 OFFLINE   JoeTheDragon

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 08:39 AM

So I'm checking my account online a couple of days ago and I see to my surprise that I have a balance of roughly $470 and a rather expensive line item: "HD DVR NRF."

Immediately I think of the dead HD DVR I've had in the garage for, I don't know, maybe six months to a year. At the time I replaced it I told DirecTV I would like to return it, but they told me they wouldn't accept it because it was "owned" as opposed to "leased" equipment. I don't quite understand the difference as I thought all the equipment was leased.

A few months ago, my wife calls me at work and tells me she's cleaning out the garage and she wants to toss the dead DVR receiver. I tell her "Don't you dare," because even though I was told they don't want it, I know better than to trust a company about an expensive leased piece of equipment. She calls DirecTV, and they tell her the same thing -- they don't want it. Always paranoid, I convince her to keep it anyway, just in case.

Then the charge shows up. Fortunately, I happened to have two return kits in house so I boxed up the DVR. (The back story: a couple of weeks ago, my H20-600 died in the study and DirecTV sent me a return kit. However, a few days later I reconsidered my initial decision to leave the study dark and called and asked for a replacement receiver, which they sent, also with a return kit. So I had two return kits in house.) I took the H20 and the DVR to FedEx on Friday.

However, the CSR I talked to said they can't remove the charge until the DVR arrives. I explained that I was told in the past they didn't want it, and they didn't send me a return kit at the time, but this didn't seem to matter. Furthermore, he couldn't even tell me the model number or access card number of the DVR that had been flagged as a non-return (I've returned two before this one -- one that died and a replacement that was also defective).

The main reason I'm concerned is that I have DirecTV bundled with my phone company, and DirecTV will be forwarding billing information to the phone company sometime this week -- meaning I will owe my phone company an extra $470. Even if I am eventually credited by DirecTV, I still will have to advance nearly $500 extra to my phone company to avoid having a balance with them.

The two CSRs I've talked to Friday and Saturday say there's nothing they can do. There's nothing their supervisors can do, etc., etc.

But what really galls me is that DirecTV made no attempts to contact me -- no e-mail, no letter, no phone call -- before suddenly tacking on $470 to my bill. I've been a customer for four years, never paid my bill late, subscribe to premium channels, Sunday Ticket, never had a serious issue and have been pretty happy with DirecTV -- and then they do this.

I'm not even confident that the DVR I returned is the one they want and that my account will be credited. And they don't seem to care what I tell them and seem only mildly interested in helping me.

I'm going to call my phone company Monday and attempt to "unbundle" to beat the bill from DirecTV and avoid situations like this -- besides, as much as I'd hate to do it I'm so angry that I'm seriously considering dumping DirecTV over this experience as soon as football season is over (I'd dump them now if I hadn't already paid for Sunday Ticket).

So now it's a race to see if the DVR gets there before they bill my phone company. And that's assuming it's the one they want. I'll tell you how it goes if anyone out there cares :). Thanks for listening.


dish and the cable co do the same carp with there boxes and comcast even want as far as billing people who lost there cable boxes to fire, Tornado's, hurricanes and others.

#8 OFFLINE   harsh

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 09:02 AM

dish and the cable co do the same carp with there boxes and comcast even want as far as billing people who lost there cable boxes to fire, Tornado's, hurricanes and others.

The OP doesn't subscribe to DISH or cable.

The actions of DIRECTV in this case are unconscionable and writing them off as industry standard is not helping.

#9 OFFLINE   Shades228

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 09:20 AM

If you never received a recovery kit and were charged a fee for not returning that I would call and ensure that your service address is correct since that's where they ship the box's too.

#10 OFFLINE   JoeTheDragon

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 09:45 AM

The OP doesn't subscribe to DISH or cable.

The actions of DIRECTV in this case are unconscionable and writing them off as industry standard is not helping.


also the aren't they doing free swaps of the HR 10 to a HR 2*

#11 OFFLINE   Shades228

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 11:12 AM

also the aren't they doing free swaps of the HR 10 to a HR 2*


Not always.

#12 OFFLINE   The Merg

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 12:52 PM

The OP doesn't subscribe to DISH or cable.

The actions of DIRECTV in this case are unconscionable and writing them off as industry standard is not helping.


The OP mentioned giving up DirecTV due to this issue. I believe the other poster was just explaining he might end up with the same issue using Dish or cable. Nothing in there implied that DirecTV was in the right.

If you never received a recovery kit and were charged a fee for not returning that I would call and ensure that your service address is correct since that's where they ship the box's too.


The OP posted that those recovery kits were received after the receiver in question had been deactivated. I think the main issue here is that the OP was told the receiver was owned, thus the reason DirecTV did not require it sent back, but then charged the OP for a non-return as if the receiver was leased.

The OP definitely needs to call back up and speak to a supervisor and not just take a CSR's word that their supervisor cannot help him. Speaking to retention would also be possible step in the right direction in getting the matter taken care of. He could also e-mail Ellen Filipiak ellen.filipaik@directv.com, VP of Customer Relations (verify the spelling of her name--I always mess it up). Her office has generally been very good in getting situations resolved.

When talking to DirecTV, if they show the receiver that was deactivated as being leased have them specify what date the recovery kit was mailed out as that is notated in the system.

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#13 OFFLINE   David MacLeod

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 02:29 PM

The OP doesn't subscribe to DISH or cable.

The actions of DIRECTV in this case are unconscionable and writing them off as industry standard is not helping.

wow, you're criticizing someones helpfulness in a DirecTv thread.
the irony is overwhelming.
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#14 OFFLINE   raoul5788

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 05:12 PM

The OP doesn't subscribe to DISH or cable.

The actions of DIRECTV in this case are unconscionable and writing them off as industry standard is not helping.


Neither is your post. You seem bent on posting only negative comments.

#15 OFFLINE   Upstream

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 07:39 PM

Fortunately, I happened to have two return kits in house so I boxed up the DVR. (The back story: a couple of weeks ago, my H20-600 died in the study and DirecTV sent me a return kit. However, a few days later I reconsidered my initial decision to leave the study dark and called and asked for a replacement receiver, which they sent, also with a return kit. So I had two return kits in house.)


If DirecTV sent you two return kits, their system expects to receive 2 returned receivers.

I ran into this problem about a year and a half ago. My receiver failed, and somehow I received two return kits. I sent the receiver back in one of the return kits, and tossed the other return kit. Even though DirecTV got the defective receiver back, I was still charged an NRF because they were expecting a second "phantom" reciever in the second return kit.

It took several weeks to get this cleared up.


Double check with DirecTV to find out which reciever they are charging the NRF on. If you owe them a receiver, then they should be able to identify it so you can send it back. If you don't owe them a receiver, then they should correct their error.

#16 OFFLINE   inkahauts

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 10:32 PM

So I'm checking my account online a couple of days ago and I see to my surprise that I have a balance of roughly $470 and a rather expensive line item: "HD DVR NRF."

Immediately I think of the dead HD DVR I've had in the garage for, I don't know, maybe six months to a year. At the time I replaced it I told DirecTV I would like to return it, but they told me they wouldn't accept it because it was "owned" as opposed to "leased" equipment. I don't quite understand the difference as I thought all the equipment was leased.

A few months ago, my wife calls me at work and tells me she's cleaning out the garage and she wants to toss the dead DVR receiver. I tell her "Don't you dare," because even though I was told they don't want it, I know better than to trust a company about an expensive leased piece of equipment. She calls DirecTV, and they tell her the same thing -- they don't want it. Always paranoid, I convince her to keep it anyway, just in case.

Then the charge shows up. Fortunately, I happened to have two return kits in house so I boxed up the DVR. (The back story: a couple of weeks ago, my H20-600 died in the study and DirecTV sent me a return kit. However, a few days later I reconsidered my initial decision to leave the study dark and called and asked for a replacement receiver, which they sent, also with a return kit. So I had two return kits in house.) I took the H20 and the DVR to FedEx on Friday.

However, the CSR I talked to said they can't remove the charge until the DVR arrives. I explained that I was told in the past they didn't want it, and they didn't send me a return kit at the time, but this didn't seem to matter. Furthermore, he couldn't even tell me the model number or access card number of the DVR that had been flagged as a non-return (I've returned two before this one -- one that died and a replacement that was also defective).

The main reason I'm concerned is that I have DirecTV bundled with my phone company, and DirecTV will be forwarding billing information to the phone company sometime this week -- meaning I will owe my phone company an extra $470. Even if I am eventually credited by DirecTV, I still will have to advance nearly $500 extra to my phone company to avoid having a balance with them.

The two CSRs I've talked to Friday and Saturday say there's nothing they can do. There's nothing their supervisors can do, etc., etc.

But what really galls me is that DirecTV made no attempts to contact me -- no e-mail, no letter, no phone call -- before suddenly tacking on $470 to my bill. I've been a customer for four years, never paid my bill late, subscribe to premium channels, Sunday Ticket, never had a serious issue and have been pretty happy with DirecTV -- and then they do this.

I'm not even confident that the DVR I returned is the one they want and that my account will be credited. And they don't seem to care what I tell them and seem only mildly interested in helping me.

I'm going to call my phone company Monday and attempt to "unbundle" to beat the bill from DirecTV and avoid situations like this -- besides, as much as I'd hate to do it I'm so angry that I'm seriously considering dumping DirecTV over this experience as soon as football season is over (I'd dump them now if I hadn't already paid for Sunday Ticket).

So now it's a race to see if the DVR gets there before they bill my phone company. And that's assuming it's the one they want. I'll tell you how it goes if anyone out there cares :). Thanks for listening.


I would not unbundled.. That could cause more problems than it solves. ANd I seriously doubt they could make any changes happen that fast anyway. They usually take weeks to enact stuff.....

I say get a hold of the case management people that where mentioned earlier in this thread...

#17 OFFLINE   inkahauts

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Posted 20 September 2009 - 10:34 PM

If DirecTV sent you two return kits, their system expects to receive 2 returned receivers.

I ran into this problem about a year and a half ago. My receiver failed, and somehow I received two return kits. I sent the receiver back in one of the return kits, and tossed the other return kit. Even though DirecTV got the defective receiver back, I was still charged an NRF because they were expecting a second "phantom" reciever in the second return kit.

It took several weeks to get this cleared up.


Double check with DirecTV to find out which reciever they are charging the NRF on. If you owe them a receiver, then they should be able to identify it so you can send it back. If you don't owe them a receiver, then they should correct their error.


That makes a lot of sense here.. I'll bet your right.

#18 OFFLINE   kc1ih

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Posted 21 September 2009 - 01:25 AM

If you can't get this straightened out with DTV in a timely manner, the next step is probably to contact your state's Attorney General's office, consumer protection division.

#19 OFFLINE   bixler

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Posted 21 September 2009 - 08:18 AM

The OP doesn't subscribe to DISH or cable.

The actions of DIRECTV in this case are unconscionable and writing them off as industry standard is not helping.


And YOU don't subscribe to DIRECT TV so why are posting garbage in this part of the forum again?:confused::confused:
Slimline5.....SWM 8.....SWS-8 8 way splitter
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#20 OFFLINE   gregjones

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Posted 21 September 2009 - 08:30 AM

This is just crazy. I can understand your frustration. I believe we do need a consumer bill of rights in this country to reduce these egregious mistreatment of consumers. They give you faulty information and want you to be responsible to pay for their mistake. I can clearly see why you would want to ditch them.

I have never had this happen before, but from dealing with them over the years I am not the least bit surprised by your aggravating story.

Good luck and hope everything works out ok.


We have remedies in place now. If you want a customer bill of rights, it will end up costing more money for everything. We need to continue enforcing the remedies in place today. We don't need another name for it and another set of bureaucrats that will produce a tax to pay for it.




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