Verizon demanding removal of copper phone line
Copperwire
Newbie

Te other day I had a man banging and ringing my door. When I went to the door a man of 6 ft dressed in dungarees and sweatshirt was standing there. No introductios just asked me if I have fois. I said no. He said well that means you have copper wire and I am from verizon and have to replace your copper wire now. Long story short I asked him I didn't make an appointment and he said he had to do it now and that it would take 4 hours. He was very gruff and when I said I didn't want fios he said I HAD TO!!!!!! After about a 10 minutes with this man I had enough and went into the house. He left saying I would hear from verizon. Well no sooner did I get into the house the phone rang. A woman saying I had to switch to fios. Both the rep on the phone and the man were very rude. It takes alot to get me upset but this blew me away. My question is can verizon demand and order me to switch to fios. I have no problem with my copper phone line???? Also I heard when they do switch you they remove the copper line all together.

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rcrogers
Newbie

Just spent an hour chatting with three (3) different departments at Verizon.

1st Department - agent kept saying that it was NOT FiOS that was being switched to. When I pointed out that an ONT was a Optical Network Terminal, she transferred me to

2nd Department - Tech Services, who confirmed that in fact they would be installing a FiOS ONT and abandoning the copper line. At least this guy was being factual. Who  then transferred me to the Billing Department.

3rd Department - at which my question to Verizon was answered. They own the infrastructure (including the copper lines in the ground). If you don't want FiOS - then you don't get telephone service.

It might be pointless to keep hammering away at this, while waiting via the chat call, quick search of the Internet to the various articles about Verizon trying to trim their employee costs (it takes more manhours to fix a copper line) and associated pension expenses by forcing their customers to the network manageable FiOS system. It makes sense, why pay a Union guy to come out and fix your copper problem when they can have a call center in India remote into your FiOS unit to make changes.

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pat_francis
Newbie

A Verizon tech stopped by the house this morning, and was rude to the point where I threatened to call the police.  He said "there is a copper line and I am cutting it now, you will convert to fios".  Apparently this same tech has been going up and down the street with the same threatening demeanor.

Considering going to COMCAST as a result of this arrogant attitude.

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AnnJ11
Contributor - Level 3

For what it's worth, here is my experience: Three years ago, I still had Verizon copper wire, but not their TV or internet. Every time it rained (!) or snowed, I would lose my phone service. Sometimes it would come back when it dried out, but usually I'd have to call Verizon from my cell phone. It would eventually be fixed, but it sometimes took several days. Several repairmen told me that the trouble was in a box half a mile away, that no other customers were using those wires, and that they were not being maintained. Several times, I reported that the door to one of the boxes on my road was standing open.

After about 10 times, you can imagine that I got sick of all this, and since I wasn't ready to give up having a landline phone, I decided that it was time to switch to something else. (I might as well add the part about how when I called and finally got through, they would always ask me to go outside in the rain - or snow - in the middle of the night with a flashlight and check the connection to my house to prove that it wasn't MY fault. Not to mention that I was supposed to unplug every extension phone in my house and then try to see if one of my phones was causing the problem.)

I resented that I was being forced to give up copper wire, and I had grave doubts about Verizon's service, but their triple play offer was better than that of other companies in my area, and none of those companies were so wonderful either.

So I guess my point is that it's noble to fight to keep your copper service, but I didn't have the stomach for it myself. Google "Verizon + copper" for discussions about the legality of what they are doing. There's a comprehensive article here: http://www.nbcwashington.com/news/local/Verizon-Fios-Phone-Copper-Customers-Say-They-Felt-Pressured-...

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manhattanNYC1
Contributor - Level 2

 choice switch FiOs,  no more headche for coopper line.

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starrin
Contributor - Level 3

@joef1987 wrote:

A Verizon tech stopped by the house this morning, and was rude to the point where I threatened to call the police.  He said "there is a copper line and I am cutting it now, you will convert to fios".  Apparently this same tech has been going up and down the street with the same threatening demeanor.


Did anything ever come of this?

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Phone_Guy1
Newbie

It's YOUR wire - keep it.  Sounds like someone who is stealing copper.

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tns2
Community Leader
Community Leader

@Phone_Guy wrote:

It's YOUR wire - keep it.  Sounds like someone who is stealing copper.



No they are switching many areas off of COPPER to FIOS.   But of course they are suppose to be polite about it.

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mobery
Newbie

I do not think they can just decide to move you to FIOS in an urban area where the copper is working.

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tns2
Community Leader
Community Leader

@mobery wrote:

I do not think they can just decide to move you to FIOS in an urban area where the copper is working.


Actually they can unless some state/local government rule prevents them.  Just because your Copper is working and may continue to work for years to come, doesn't mean everyone elses will.  Its cheaper for to switch you all off then to continue to repair the existing copper wire when problems occur.

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TimeVoyager
Enthusiast - Level 3

First of all, the man at your door should have already known if you have FIOS or not. Copper theft is big business among criminals. If that man behaved as you described, he could also be guilty of harassment, intimidation, or violations of state or municipal law. The moment anyone gets gruff with me, I would ask them to leave my property--call the police if necessary--and file a complaint with his employer. Also, check with your state or provincial utility commission. In Pennsylvania, there is no such requirement to switch to FIOS that I know about. If you do (I have), Verizon may remove the copper outside line, but only with the property owner's permission. I can tell Verizon to leave the copper alone and they are not allowed legally to touch it, except at the disconnect points to install the FIOS service.

tns2
Community Leader
Community Leader

In most areas, they can remove the copper without you permission.  All the stuff up to and including the old Network interface box belongs to them.  If you make it difficult for them to switch you over to Fiber, you will eventually will end up over without telephone service.

This switch over was started in areas around NYC even before Hurricane Sandy and I (even though I was already had FIOS) and my neighbors had received notices.  Actually Sandy delayed the switchover in our area as they had to work on areas where the telephone infrastructure was wiped out.

Hubrisnxs
Legend

Pennsylvania's Copper infrastructure wasn't decimated by Sandy. 

New York is a different scenario

Into the vault: the operation to rescue Manhattan's drowned internet ...

 Nov 17, 2012
Hurricane Sandy's storm surge flooded Verizon's downtown office, rendering miles of copper wiring ...
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armond_in_nj1
Master - Level 1

@Copperwire wrote:

... I had a man banging and ringing my door. When I went to the door a man ... said ...   I am from verizon and have to replace your copper wire now ... [later] ... the phone rang. A woman saying I had to switch to fios. Both the rep on the phone and the man were very rude ... can verizon demand and order me to switch to fios [?] ...


What happened when you contacted Verizon Communications directly?

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Hubrisnxs
Legend

from what I am reading, Verizon is proactively moving copper customers to FiOS 

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itgirl71
Enthusiast - Level 1

A tech called me this morning to schedule an appointment to change my copper line to fiber.  I told him I didn't request such a change, and he said that this was going to take place for everyone in my neighborhood.  I asked if I had a choice, and he responded that I can refuse for now, but at some point in the future, it would be mandatory.  I replied that he should call me back when the change became mandatory.

I'm not sure that the people in my area understand what such a change means, but everyone in my neighborhood had no electricity for a week following Hurricane Sandy.  I had the only copper POTS line in the building and my neighbors were only able to call their relatives from my phone, since cell phone service was spotty at best, and their backup battery solutions for their FIOS phones ran out days before.  Additionally, Jersey City made broadcast calls to households to update everyone about vital emergency services, repair schedules, safety curfews, etc.  My neighbors didn't receive any of these notices.  Guess why?

I don't understand how such a change can be made to basic public services without notice or recourse of any kind.  If people knew what this really meant, they'd be very upset.   If a person can't call for emergency service because the phone service they pay for and rely on isn't available, there has to be some liability, especially if the company is aware of the fact that the fiber phones won't work without electricity.  We can live without water, heat or electricity, for a time, but access to emergency communication is essential, and shouldn't be something we have to fight for in this country.

walt178
Specialist - Level 3

It sounds like a scam.  Was the man in a Verizon truck? Or a clearly marked company truck if he was a sub-contractor.  Did he present proper identification?   The phone call could have been from his cohort not Verizon. If you have caller ID, try calling the number back and see who you get.  Next time ask for ID and a work order. If he's legitimate he can provide it.

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Copperwire
Newbie

The man arrived in a verizon truck. And I did mention of him showing up in plain clothes with no identification. On clothing or tags saying verizon to which he replied The credenials are in the truck. I have credentials.

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