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Dishonest Authorized Retailer
Garveyak
Member

This past Wednesday, my husband and I went into an authorized retailer to get new iPhone 8 Plus phones and sign up for the shared data plan. I had to be at work and was going to meet my husband and kids at the verizon store before running to work. I asked the asssociate if I needed to stay there and he said normally yes I would have to stay, but he'll make an exception. He asked for my ID and wrote down my phone number and 4 digit code. Next I told him my husband and I want to trade our iphone 7 Plus phones for 8 Plus. He told me that they only had one 8 plus left. I asked if he could order one or if they were getting any more in, and he said no because of a "system change." He then told me he had an iPhone 8, and I said I'll take that if the only difference is the screen size, because i can live with a smaller screen. He said ok and got the iphone 8. My husband and kids arrived and I told my husband that they only had one iphone 8 plus left and that I would take the 8 since its just a smaller screen. I left for work and my husband remained there the next hour and a half to finish everything with the associate.

I quickly realized when I went to use my new phone that the camera was not the same; it didn't have portrait mode like my iphone 7 plus had. I called verizon and explained what happened, and found out that the associate could have ordered a phone, but I could return the one I had  because I was in the 14 day grace period. Because the associate didnt order the phone, and didnt mention any other differences than the screen size, that they would credit me the restocking fee. I was told I could return the phone and the associate I was speaking with found other local stores with the iphone 8 plus in stock. I asked if I was still able to return the phone if the corner of the box was a little torn and I was told that is not a problem and that the box isn't important, as long as the equipment is good.

I went back to the store this morning and saw the same associate that sold me the phone. I told him that I wanted to return it because it didnt have the same features as the 8 plus like I thought it did. He asked what features it didn't have and when I said the camera isnt the same he said, "oh." He then got my ID and informed me that my name wasn't on the account, but because he remembered me from Wednesday he would proceed with the return. He opened the box and looked at everything. He made a phone call (not sure to who but he was on his cell phone) and mentioned the return and commented that everything was there and still brand new and that I just didn't like the phone. He then hung up and continued on his computer. He got back on the phone and he asked if another authorized retailer  (about 30 minutes away) would hold an iphone 8 plus for me. I let him know I was going to a closer corporate store to make my purchase. At that point, the associate decided I was no longer able to return my phone because of the small tear in the corner of the box. I told him that customer service said the tear is not an issue and he insisted it was a problem (after having known about this tear for over 20 minutes at this point). I asked to speak with his manager and he got on his cell phone, called his manager and told me that his manager is with a client and will call me when he is available. I let the associate know this wouldnt have happened had he not lied about being able to order a phone, or had he mentioned there are more differences than the screen size, and that the restocking fee had already been credited by corporate because I confirmed this with them. The associate said there was nothing he could do and said I had to wait for his manager to call. 

I left upset and called customer service (several times) and while everyone was very kind and helpful, they all expressed shock that the authorized retailer wouldn't allow the return. A couple associates tried calling the store to reason with them but said ultimately i'm out of luck because it is an authorized retailer and corporate can not override them. I called my sister to vent and she said her husband had an iphone 8 box, same color and GB as mine, and that I could have it if the box is the only issue. I called customer service one more time and they called the store to see if I could return my phone in that box. The store told that associate that I would have to switch the sticker on the back and return everything undamaged. They told her I tried to return damaged ear phones. The ear phones I returned never left the paper square they come in, were never unwound, plugged into anything, or put in anyones ear. Now the associate had made up another lie to keep me from returning my phone. 

I went back to the store this afternoon to speak with the assistant manager but she had left ( she wasnt there this morning during my first visit). I then asked when I would hear from the store manager ( who was supposedly with a client at another location when I asked to speak with him earlier). I was informed by a different associate that the manager has been off all weekend and I would need to call Monday. So I was also lied to when I was told he would call me today when he was finished with his client. He wasnt with a client if he wasn't at work.

Is there anyone at Verizon corporate who has any leverage over the authorized retailers? My experience has been horrible. And to make it worse, we were verizon prepaid customers when we owned our iphone 7 plus phones. We wanted newer phones and the new plan we switched to is more expensive per month with less data. We are paying more for less and this is the kind of treatment I've received. Because the original associate didn't want to lose a sale to a corporate store, I'm stuck with a phone that I didn't know I didn't want.

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Re: Dishonest Authorized Retailer
mama23dogs

Authorized retailers are not owned by, and employees don't work for Verizon.  It's like dealing with Walmart for a Target purchase.   As you were told, Verizon has no pull.  But from your post, I'm thinking the 2nd authorized retail store might be owned by the same owner.  
I do not deal with authorized retailers.  

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Re: Dishonest Authorized Retailer
Garveyak
Member

I wish I had known they operated under their own rules before I went there. I'm honestly not expecting to get anywhere when I speak with the manager, especially if he told the associate to tell me he was with a client and would call me later. Is it worth trying to contact the owner?

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Re: Dishonest Authorized Retailer
Tigerstep
Sr. Member

You can call care and request for a report on the sales rep you worked with. It may get the person fired or it may go no where. It's ultimately up to the consumer to research before buying a product.

The reality is sales reps don't care about you. They care about dollar signs and if you aren't one, they act accordingly. Open box without restocking fees typically require the device to not be opened at all. Switching boxes is a bit suspect advice since an IMEI mismatch will come off as fraud.

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Re: Dishonest Authorized Retailer
Garveyak
Member

Both the call center rep and the assistant store manager said (on the recorded line) that I could use the other box if I put the IMEI sticker from my box onto the other box, but the call center rep said the box gets thrown away and a small tear isn't a reason for them not to accept this exchange because the box gets tossed anyway. I don't have the other box yet, it was just an idea and my brother-in-law would need to mail it to me. 

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Re: Dishonest Authorized Retailer
mama23dogs

@Tigerstep wrote:

You can call care and request for a report on the sales rep you worked with. It may get the person fired or it may go no where. It's ultimately up to the consumer to research before buying a product.

The reality is sales reps don't care about you. They care about dollar signs and if you aren't one, they act accordingly. Open box without restocking fees typically require the device to not be opened at all. Switching boxes is a bit suspect advice since an IMEI mismatch will come off as fraud.


They don't work for Verizon, so Verizon cannot fire them.  

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Re: Dishonest Authorized Retailer
vzw_customer_support
Customer Support

Garveyak, we are truly sorry to hear that you have had this experience with any of our stores. When making such a valuable purchase, I know that I would want the phone of my choosing. From what you have mentioned, it almost sounds as if an exchange was going to be processed until mentioning that you would be going to a corporate store. Is this correct? What was the location of the store involved? You mentioned that you had originally been on a prepaid plan but then were moved to a contract plan, does you husband recall selecting a plan?  LorenB_VZW If my response answered your question please click the _Correct Answer_ button under my response. This ensures others can benefit from our conversation. Thanks in advance for your help with this!!

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Re: Dishonest Authorized Retailer
Garveyak
Member

Yes, he was ready to process the return until I said I didn't want to drive to the location he mentioned and that I would be picking up an 8 plus at a closer store (which happens to be corporate). There was also a line forming and being the only associate working I'm guessing he began to feel overwhelmed. My husband and I decided on the post paid plan we wanted before coming to the store; I mostly included that part because the associate didn't seem to care that we chose to pay more for our data plan so that we could get phones with a monthly payment vs buying them outright to stay on prepaid. After contacting the owner yesterday I quickly received a call from the store manager and he is working to get this resolved hopefully no later than tomorrow. Is it possible to private message you the store location?

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