Arbitrary $414 Charge from CMR (Verizon) for FiOS Line Fix?
FiOS line was buried above grade in 2 inches of mulch in yard. Wife cut line not expecting something in the flowerbed mulch. Called Verizon, they scheduled repair, said nothing about charges. Repair was executed, service working, month+ later completely unexpected get a bill for $414 from "Verizon" via "CMR". Verizon - CMR Bill (scan of bill, note CMR represents Verizon on this bill)
Some facts to note:
- Verizon did not mention any charge for repair of line
- Was never presented with a work-order with estimate, never signed off on repair costs
- fee on work order is arbitrary, no rate negotiated, no supplies itemized
- cable buried above grade in 2" of garden mulch - National Electrical Code (NEC) 830.47 Underground Circuits Entering Buildings states 12" to 18" below grade burial depth for "network-powered broadband communications cables entering buildings"
- at no time did any fee or mention of any repair bill appear on the legitimate monthly Verizon invoice.
- calling Verizon, their customer support indicated Verizon does not bill outside the monthly billing and suggested this was a scam
A Letter was sent to CMR disputing the charge based upon the improperly buried cable (negligence) and the unauthorized billing for work. (images attached at end of this text)
Key: the cable was illegally buried (negligence, Verizon), the work-order estimate was never presented nor signed. I have thus not entered into a contact with CMR and have not assumed the liability for the fees for services rendered. Multiple public legal opinions agree, no contract, no assumption of liability for fees for service. CMR's contract may be will Verizon, but it is not with me.
Searching Verizon forums, it is clear that this is a repeating story. There are over 60 discussions in the Verizon forums related to CMR billing problems: http://vz.to/1J15PXC beginning in 2009 and most recent being last month (Nov 2015) with the largest arbitrary fee being $1300.
Two things need to happen 1) Verizon needs to resolve this with their contracted labor, CMR, and issue a formal release for any liablity for the repair and 2) this billing "shell game" needs to stop.
CMR: web site http://ansrcmr.publishpath.com
Virginia Attorney General (Mark R. Herring) Office : http://www.oag.state.va.us
Photos: FiOS above crepe myrtle roots, above grade, in mulch, ruler showing depth in mulch.
To Verizon's credit, speaking with a lady in Billing, she was exceptionally nice but could not resolve this issue. Technical support was fair to midland in their attitude but of absolutely no help as they could not identify any nominal fees or regular process for line repair.
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