they just pass it on, goverment changes it all the time
every carrier does this
consider it tax. it pays for the obama phones
The Obamaphone program was actually passed by Congress and signed into law by President Bush.
The only way I can see getting out of paying the ETF is if you can prove you were forced to sign their contract against your will. And you were, we all are all the time. The basis would be that you have to agree to their terms or you won't get the product. That means agreeing to pay their fees even if you have no service, poor service, or if they change their service. You're forced to accept their terms whether you want to or not. When I signed up with Verizon, I didn't bother to read the contract. What's the point? They have their terms and if you don't agree, too bad. Then don't sign it and don't get your cell phone and don't get their internet and go to another company who also has their contract. You're forced to sign someone's contract for most everything you do these days. So it's not just Verizon, this applies to any company. We have to sign their contracts with their terms. So I wonder, why shouldn't I be able to make them sign my contract with MY terms which says I will keep your service for two years and I will pay you as long I get what I'm paying for and I'm happy with your service? But we don't get to negotiate the terms. I'm not a lawyer, but if you want to go that route, I suggest you find a good lawyer first to see if you have a legal foot to stand on. And don't forget lawyers cost a lot of money. It's probably not worth the money and the time just to get out of a contract. The only other way is to complain to the attorney general's office in your state. If they get enough of the same kind of complaints, they will look into it and could decide to start a class action suit. But again, I've never heard of a lawsuit like this, maybe because there's no legal basis to it. I really don't know. Just a thought!
Yes, you are most likely correct in that there is no legal basis to it.
Why? Because you are NOT forced to sign ANY contract to get the product. You sign the contract in order to get the product at a GREATLY reduced price. You can choose to pay full retail for the product and NOT sign any contract. For most products which Verizon sells, the ETF is not as great as the discount you receive in exchange for signing the contract. For example, you can sign a contract on an 32 GB iPhone 5(full retail price of $749.99) and get the product for $299.99. You can immediately cancel your service pay the $350 ETF and you will have paid a total of $649.99 for the phone which is $100 LESS than what you would have to pay had you NOT signed the contract.
Wanting to get off without paying the ETF is such a joke. You don't want to follow the terms of the contract, then DON'T SIGN THE CONTRACT. You can still get the product, you can still get service and you don't have to cry about paying an ETF if you decide to leave. Everyone always wants a better deal. The OP chose the deal they wanted(i.e. FREE iPhone 4 x 2) and is now unhappy with it. Pay the ETF and be done with it. It is still LESS than what you would have paid for the phones had you NOT signed the contract($900). Sell them on a site such as Swappa.com and make back at least a portion, if not all, of the ETF. Then you can choose a cellular provider better suited to your situation.
Did you come here and say if was not fair when some of these fees were REDUCED a few quarters ago. I doubt it.
May 2012 my Base Bill without fees and such. 95.99, This Month 95.99
With fees, May 2012, $102.09
With fees, May 2013, $101.87
Ya want out, pay the ETF.
No, because frankly my bill has done nothing but steadily go upward with no increased usage, etc. I've contacted Verizon about that and they don't have an answer and said they'll have to get back to me at earliest in 48 hours and let me know what they've figured out. They said that fees were reduced, but that my bill is up and they can't explain why and neither can I. So, no I didn't come to say thanks for the reduced costs, because there are none for me. Maybe my situation is just unique.
You have to have some type of changes happening. Kids ordering ringtones, monthly charges due to 'free' ringtones.....
Have you pulled your DETAILED invoices for the last 12 months. Do that, each charge is broke out and explained.
Go to VIEW BILL
Choose a billing period
Then click on VIEW PRINTABLE BILL.
Do that and compare. You will very easily see what is occurring. Do that and let us know what you find.
I actually plan to pay full retail for phones from here on out. The problem is I don't have the ability to pay the ETF at the moment, so I was looking if there was something that met the terms of said signed contract that would stand as materially adverse and allow me out ETF free. Funny thing is contracts go both ways, so if there's something materially adverse(to the best of my knowledge and research that's never been defined by the courts) then I have every right to use it to leave ETF free if I so choose. I'm sure someone will say I don't then have the $ to buy phones outright. You'd be right, but I have my current iPhones I could go use on a BYO prepaid carrier or some other smartphones I still also have that could also be used on a BYO carrier, so that's my thought until I acquire the requisite funds to purchase new smartphones outright, unlocked, and unsubsidized. I hate to say it, but Europe has a better cell phone model than we do and T-Mobile might, just might we'll have to wait and see, be on to something here.
And here's me being an argumentative type. Technically yes you'd get the phone as mentioned in your example for $100 less than retail, except you forgot to figure in the cost of one month of service that you'll be billed for. Unless I misunderstand the way it works now is they don't let you do that and keep the phone, it's either pay that the 299, the ETF, and one month of service, or if in the 14 day period all goes back. Just saying.