This is a message I just sent to Roger Tang, President of the South Region:
Dear Mr Tang,
I called on Sept 19th or 20th about the bad 4G LTE signal on my HTC Thunderbolt. While on the phone the rep said he could offer m 1 of 4 different phones for free without it counting against my upgrade period eligibility. I said yes, obviously and choose a Galaxy Nexus.
When my Nexus came it couldn't connect to Verizon's sevice. I took it to the local store and they ddin't have any "good" SIM cards and reactivated my Thunderbolt until I could go to a store that had good SIM cards the nest day. The next morning I took it to the location and got an alleged good SIM. However the phone still didn't work. 95% of the time it couldn't get a signal and the 5% of the time it did, it would drop the call after 30 seconds. I finally got ahold of Verizon they sent out a second Nexus to me. Once I got the second Nexus it worked great, aside from the fact it burns thru the battery quickly.
Today I get an email from Verizon letting me that I owe a $299 damaged phone fee due to the glass screen being cracked. The initial rep never said anything about a fee at all. He just said are 4 phones we can send you to replace your Thunderbolt. When I called customer service about the charge I was told there was no way to send the Thunderbolt back and the only way to remove the $299 fee was to send back my Nexus. As I am about 6 weeks from my upgrade period I have to downgrade to a 6 year old flip phone. I can not put my contacts into this phone due to the size of the contact list in it (and I have to have my contacts for work), I can not transfer any music to it nor use it for internet and I have unlimited data on my present contract that I will be paying for despite not being able to use.
I don't deny the screen was cracked but the phone still worked fine. All the functions were normal and I used it every day since it happened in April of this year. If I had wanted to fix it, I could have done it locally for $119.99 plus tax or $79.99 if I was willing to ship it to someone out of town. I never called about the screen as the problem with the phone. I called about the phone constantly dropping the 4G signal and needing to borrow someone else's phone at times to use the internet despite being as close as 100 feet from a tower. If I had been told of the fee I would have said "Thanks but no thanks" and kept my faithful Thunderbolt. Honestly, I feel completely done wrong by the whole situation. Yesterday I would have told anyone how great my experience with Verizon was (and I actually did to a few people). Today though, I would tell people to go to anyone except Verizon for service. If this is how someone who has been a loyal customer since 2005 or so gets treated I truly wish I had to money to go to another carrier ASAP. I may be stuck with Verizon for now but I will be telling everyone I know not to go to them.
Next time a rep offers you something that sounds great, make sure they tell you everything ahead of time or this could be you.
Broken screen = NO WARRANTY on the phone.
You had supressed this information at the time the exchange was offered. There was NO REASON a replacement would've been offered had the rep known about the broken screen.
It wasn't a trade. Verizon offered me a free phone to replace a phone they knew had problems. I didn't call them saying "Hey, my phone sucks. Send me a new one!" The CSR said there were things they could try which I had told him I already had and HE offered me a new phone instead. Never once did I solicit a new phone and he didn't mention the $299 fee. If he had, I would have said no. Plus honestly, how many phones do they get back in trade that are in mint condition after 19 months of use? Not a whole lot I bet. Plus to fix the glass screen cost far less than what the $299 fee is. Would you have sent the phone back if they had told you this if the phone still worked fine? No, it would have been smarter just to hold onto the phone and wait a few weeks until you could upgrade and get a new one (which I probably would have done). But now I lose the new phone, can't get back my old one, have to use a 6 year old flipper AND still pay on the current contract I have all due to one rep not mentioning the damaged phone fee. And if he would have asked I would have told him. I wasn't trying to hide anything from them in any way. I wasn't asked! I was 6 weeks away from being able to upgrade anyhow. What sense would it make to go through all this that close to being able to get a new phone anyhow if I was just trying to put one over on them?
If you see my other posts, you will know that I am not one of those in this board who like to defend Verizon in hopes of a month of free service. Saying that, I think it is a clear cut case of misunderstanding. The rep thought he was just replacing a device under warranty which he assumed was still under warranty, and you thought you were given a replacement because of your troubles. I totally concur that the rep should have mentioned the fee.
However, you called Verizon requesting assistance on a device that was NO LONGER in warranty. It doesn't matter if everything was working alright even with a broken screen, all that matters is if the phone is under warranty or not. I personally think you should have known that under no circumstances you could get a free replacement on a broken phone.
At this point, I think your best bet is to await reply from higher-ups that you had contacted or simply return the phone and use a spare until you can get an upgrade. If you were thinking of keeping your unlimited, you might want to buy a smartphone you like from a private party anyway.
Misunderstanding is right. If I could somehow get my old phone back I would be happy and everything would be fine. But as I can't there isn't much I can do at this point. Again, I am just really upset that one statement by the original rep would have ended this whole mess before it even began.
At this point it really doesn't matter whether you were trying to hide anything about the phone you were returning or not. It's the appearance that you were trying to hide something.
If you were buying a phone off ebay and when you were talking to the seller he told you it worked fine.(i.e. calls, texts, internet, blutooth, etc.) so you told him you would buy it and he sold it to you. When you rec'd the phone, you find the screen was cracked. When you called him about it, he said he told you the phone worked fine and besides, you never asked about whether the screen was cracked or not. Wouldn't you think that was some info he should have offered you?
I'm sure the Verizon rep was thinking they could refurbish your old phone and send it out as a CLNR. At least that's what he was figuring when determining Verizons cost when offering you a new phone at no cost. Now when they receive it the screen is cracked and Verizons cost is changed cuz they have to replace the screen first.
At this point, "bite the bullit" and wait 'til your upgrade and move on. Unless of course your letter to Mr Tang happens to work out something good for you.
Seriously, best of luck to you.
All that makes sense. But the cost of the fee is unreasonable. Like i posted earlier, I could have had the glass screen replaced for much cheaper. Heck, the glass AND the LCD under it would have only cost $149 or so including labor. My other question is what if someone send in a phone that is scratched on the front glass but not broken? Would they still charge the $299?
IDK how they could charge $299 for a phone that's priced at Best Buy for $49????? Send it back and request a refund and go to Best Buy and get a new one there......