ETF Refund was not for full amount


    Very frustrated customer who tried to do everything correct as to it's employees instructions at the store. First hiccup came when I submitted all my phones to the store to trade in and wasn't called till 2.5 weeks later stating that they couldn't return my ipad mini and that I would have to return it myself. Well when I tried to do it I couldn't because it was out of the 14 day period for trading in devices. Went to the store to try and get it resolved and no one can figure out what happened but they ended up saying they would just give me a $200 statement credit and that I could sell the ipad to make up for the lost amount. Fast forward a couple of weeks later and I finally receive my ETF refund and it's not even close to the full amount of the other two devices! I tried to call in to the support and wouldn't you know that they aren't open on the weekends. All I can say is T-Mobile's customer service is laughable and it is apparent that the ETF refund process is convoluted on purpose so that they can deny you on a technicality. I would not recommend that you switch to T-Mobile if you want your full ETF refund that they promise you.

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      • e2k

        Re: ETF Refund was not for full amount

        Are you sure you had an ETF rather than an EIP? An ETF is when your carrier gives you a discount on a phone in exchange for a contract commitment. When that contract is terminated early, an ETF (early termination fee) is applied. An EIP is when you buy the phone at full price, but make monthly payments on the device.


        The reason I ask is because an ETF reimbursement should be equivalent to the amount of the ETF as itemized on your final bill. In the case of an EIP, it is a bit more complicated.


        As explained on the Carrier Freedom page (which I suggest reading in full - be sure read the bottom section entitled "Switch Carriers FAQ"):


        How does ETF reimbursement work on the web?

        Individuals and families who can take advantage of this offer (see above) are eligible for Early Termination Fee (ETF) reimbursement for up to 10 lines. Follow these steps:

        1. Transfer your number(s) online, trade in your phone(s) and tablet(s) online and receive a bill credit based on the market value for your eligible device.
        2. Then, when you receive your final bill listing your ETF amounts, you simply submit it online at, and if you qualify, within 8 weeks you will receive a Prepaid MasterCard® Card covering your ETF amount up to $350 per line. The card is not redeemable for cash and expires in 12 months unless extended by Issuer.

        How does the device payment plan reimbursement work on the web?

        First, trade in the device you still owe money on with your old carrier. You will receive a credit equal to your phone’s trade-in value. Then when you submit the bill from your carrier for the device payoff, you will receive a Prepaid MasterCard® Card for your remaining device payment plan balance minus your phone’s trade-in value.


        After reviewing all of your documentation, if it appears that your reimbursement was less than what it should have been, I suggest contacting T-Force. They are usually much more effective than going through the normal channels.


        To contact T-Force

        Go to the Contact Us page and use the Facebook, Twitter or Google Plus link under in the “Social Support” section.