What do you do when T-Mobile will not tell you what they are charging you for?

deborahcb

    How can I get an accounting of the itemized charges on a prepaid plan? The amounts being charged have been changing often since the California MTS surcharge started 1/1/2016. It is only 8.51%, but my $40 base plan is now being charged almost $50.  I think I am being overcharged and am due a refund, but because they are not following the FCC Truth-in-Billing rules, I cannot get a bill of see online what I am being charged for.

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      • tidbits

        The rules say nothing about taxes and fees directly.

         

        Your state implemented a few new tax laws as well as federal tax laws which affects prepaid. You can check other prepaid services and you will find everyone has to pay up. Not long ago people used to not pay these taxes and fees.

          • deborahcb

            I don't have a problem paying correct fees, however when the amount keeps changing each month, they need to provide a way for me to see what they are charging me for.  That is the issue.  They will not provide any information as to what I am being charged for on a prepaid plan.  This is in violation of the FCC Truth-in-Billing regulations.  I have filed a complaint.  I also believe they are overcharging me more than $5 a month for the new CA MTS surcharge, so I have also filed a complaint with the California PUC.

              • tidbits

                Some fees are government fees which are affected by country, region, state, and also customer base. Since those are not fixed the taxes will fluctuate

                 

                It is not a violation.  The rules specifically targets services, and not taxes.   I wish you the best of luck.  The new tax regulations went into effect especially the California ones.  I noticed those because Hawaii tends to copy California when it comes to tax laws.

                  • deborahcb

                    You are incorrect.  Taxes result from legislation.  Legislation is written to specify what the taxes are.  For example the new MTS in CA is 8.51%.  As my base plan is fixed at $40, the percentage on that will always be the same.  And you are missing the main point.  47 CFR 64.2401 - Truth-in-Billing requires all phone services to be detailed in a statement to subscribers.  T-Mobile refuses to do so for prepaid plans.  There is no exception in the regulation for prepaid plans.  They are required to provide a monthly statement, especially when the amount they are charging me keeps changing.  I am entitled under the law to know what they are charging me for.  Otherwise they could be "cramming" me, for which they have already been found guilty in the past.

                      • tidbits

                        Truth in Billing specifically points to services that carriers charge for.  Taxes are not services...  So exactly where does it say taxes?  You can argue number 4, but in context it points to services rendered and providers.

                         

                        Truth-In-Billing Policy | Federal Communications Commission

                        (1) provide a brief, clear, non-misleading, plain language description of the service or services rendered to accompany each charge; (2) identify the service provider associated with each charge; (3) clearly and conspicuously identify any change in service provider; (4) contain full and non-misleading descriptions of charges; (5) identify those charges for which failure to pay will not result in disconnection of the customer's basic local service; (6) provide a toll-free number for customers to call in order to lodge a complaint or obtain information; (7) place charges from third parties that are not telephone companies in a distinct section of the bill, separate from telephone company charges; and (8) provide a separate subtotal for third-party charges in the separate bill section and on the payment page.

                         

                        As you see below they are NOT fixed. Like I said location plays a part in how much you pay.  Even to go as far to say just going into another city and making a 10 minute+ phone call affects how much you pay because if they can charge you more they'll surely do it.  Anything that a company collects in tax must be paid to California, and the Feds.  If a company keeps that tax they'd be in big trouble.

                        https://www.boe.ca.gov/industry/prepaid_mts_surcharge.html

                         

                        The BOE calculates the prepaid MTS surcharge rate by adding the:

                        • Prepaid 911 surcharge rate as determined by the Office of Emergency Services (OES).
                        • California Public Utilities Commission's (CPUC) reimbursement fee and telecommunications universal services surcharges.
                        • Local charges, if applicable

                         

                        Please see our MTS Rates section for the rates for each city or county and additional information about the components of the prepaid MTS surcharge.

                        You can look up the current prepaid MTS rate by city or county on our Prepaid Mobile Telephony Services (MTS) Surcharge Rates webpage.


                        What rate do I charge my customers for prepaid MTS?

                        If you are making sales of prepaid MTS cards/services from your business location, you should generally charge and collect the correct prepaid MTS rate for the city and/or county where your business is located.

                        However, even if you do not make the sale at your business location, the sale of prepaid MTS occurs in California and the prepaid MTS surcharge applies when:

                        1. The item is shipped to, or picked up by, your customer at a California location, or
                        2. Your records show that the customer's address is located in California, or
                        3. Your customer provides you an address in California during the sales transaction (for example, a billing address), or
                        4. The mobile telephone number is associated with a location in California.

                        For purposes of determining the correct prepaid MTS rate to charge, when you do not sell prepaid MTS to the customer at your business location, but one of the above scenarios applies, you should charge the prepaid MTS rate that applies to the above known California location or address of your customer, in the order listed above.

                • annie.mcclusky

                  I wonder about this to. My plan is prepaid 30.00 per month through Walmart. Where it shows payment due it says $30.00 but I get charged 32.78. 2.78 is the new tax. I get 100 minutes talk time. I rarely use talk but this month it showed me reaching my 100 minutes. No text to tell me I reach the limit.Had to have someone tell me they couldn't get through. No where online can i find what calls I made and to whom and how long. I know I have seen it in the past. I know I didn't use 100 minutes of talk time. With your 40.00 plan it should be telling you what calls were made and where did you go over your plan that they are billing you for.

                  • annie.mcclusky

                    I had an idea. Not online, but on your phone, check the CALL LOGS. That should show each call anyway and you can see if you are over your plan. I doubt it will shows taxes and fees though