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Charged for returned device that was processed under warranty instead of insurance

My phone suddenly began to have two issues:

1) No one could hear me unless I put them on speaker phone

2) It would not take a steady charge

So, I took it into a Verizon store.  I told the Customer Service Agent about the two problems, and I stated that I have the full coverage insurance.  She took off the back of the phone, looked inside but didn't see any visible damage (no surprise because the damage was inside the phone and not visible from her vantage point).  She told me, "Ok.  I'm going to send you out a new phone.  When you get it, follow the instructions to send your old phone back."  A few days later, I got the new phone in the mail, and I returned the old phone following the directions in the box (very simple).  A month later, I was charged $299 plus tax as a deductible against the warranty because the defective charge port is not under warranty.

This is my problem: I assumed the Customer Service Agent processed it under an insurance claim, but once I received the bill, I was told it was processed against the manufacturer's warranty.  Had it been processed under the insurance, I would have been liable for only a $49 deductible.  I knew nothing about the process before this happened.  I returned the original phone shortly after I bought it for a different reason, and the same process was followed (without the charge).  I have been told that an insurance claim would have been processed differently (I would have mailed my phone in and been without a phone until I received a replacement.  I would have forwarded my number to my home phone and dealt with it.)  It would not have been the ideal situation, but I could have made do.

My main complaint is that I provided all of the details to the Customer Service Agent, then trusted her expertise to process the damaged phone.  Not only did she NOT offer me the two options, she decided which one to pursue without consulting with me or telling me the fees for which I would be liable under the two options.  Now that the phone has been returned, I cannot pursue an insurance claim because Verizon has possession of the phone.  I find this incredibly unfair because (1) Verizon did not address the problem with the phone reception (I had to put the phone on speaker phone for anyone to hear me and (2) I provided all the necessary details to process the damaged device using the procedure most advantageous to me (which is why I pay $6.99 a month), yet Verizon chose to process the claim using a different procedure.

I am now being told that Verizon is simply a 3rd party in all this and that they can do nothing about it.  I spoke to Customer Service shortly after I looked at that bill and was offered a $100 credit, but I feel that I should have to pay only the $49.00 deductible.

Please advise me on what I should do.

Thank you,

John   >> personal information removed <<

Message was edited by: Verizon Moderator

Re: Charged for returned device that was processed under warranty instead of insurance

You have just been scammed by one of Verizon's scam tactics. As long as the "warranty provider" has access to your bill (and the ability to charge without your consent), this will NOT go away.

Lesson #1: Never trust a rep/CSR ever - specially true for Verizon.

Go talk to the CSR that processed the order. Talk to her manager and keep pressing. Tell them that she found NO VISIBLE damage to the phone, hence you chose the option to use warranty.

For next time, go to a carrier with your OWN phone which is warrantied by the manufacturer directly. Manufacturers DO NOT have access to your service account, so NO SURPRISE CHARGES.