BAIT AND SWITCH???

jamierothenberger

    Has anyone been taken advantage of as part of T-Mobile's bait and switch scam?  My husband and I were told over the phone that if we switched 2 lines from another carrier that they were offering 2 free IPhone 7's.  We were happy with the offer and took advantage.  After we received the phones and turned on service we started to be billed for the phones.  The FULL 650 for each phone.  Multiple calls to customer service turned in several various explanations ranging from "we needed to turn in old phones" to "the promotion was no longer running".  Either way, we were promised 2 phones and were given NOTHING  when it was their sales associate's error in making the promise.  When I suggested that we were leaving TMobile and wanted to turn the phones in we were told that was not an option and that they don't take phones back. 

     

    Never in my life have I been so blatantly lied to and basically scammed by a company.  If they would have made it right from the start it would not have been an issue, but they were completely unwilling to rectify to my satisfaction.  I was offered 50 and 100 dollar discounts which hardly makes a difference when talking about $1,400 and literally DAYS spent on hold with representatives who did nothing more than say sorry and that their own sales associate was wrong.  I don't understand how a company can operate like this.  I am so upset that I have actually spoken to a lawyer as to my legal options against tmobile and plan to call my local TV station who does news segments on this very thing. 

     

    A VERY VERY unhappy customer……(who has no option to leave so you are keeping me hostage by not returning the phone).

     

    I plan to post and alert consumers wherever I can as to the dishonesty of tmobile.

      All replies

      • Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

        Do you have an exact date that you signed up?

         

        Usually a phone must be turned in when switching to get a discount or free phone. Also it may take 3 billing cycles to see a monthly credit for each phones EIP amount.

         

        Im not sure how you would have been billed the entire amount at one time since typically you'd pay up front for an entirety and monthly on EIP.

         

        Only other thing I can think of is that the promo required a device trade in But none was turned in so perhaps that explains the full cost. Not sure why the phones were not put on EIPs if that was the case.

         

        Were these bought in a store or out of stock and you were set up for delivery? I can't see a store letting anyone walk out with unpaid iPhones.

         

        When was the exact date you signed up?

          • jamierothenberger

            Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

            I think the exact date was march 13 or 14.  We did it over the phone which was the issue.  The person on the phone did not tell us to turn in our old phones.  Then when we got the bill and called after we turned the new ones on they said we were being charged since we didn't turn an old one in.

             

            They said they will do nothing as they can't speak to what we were promised and that leaving only meant we were liable for the full phone amount.  So we got roped in on the phone with the promise of a deal only to find out that the deal doesn't even exist!.....this is fraud!

             

            Sent from my iPhone

              • artart

                Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                jamierothenberger wrote:

                leaving only meant we were liable for the full phone amount.

                Hi jamierothenberger

                Sorry to hear about your problem. To possibly help you, some of us might like a few answers to some questions to help us suggest any possible remedies. To address the legal matter you are alluding to, my question follows: When signing up for the promo, did the rep read a "legal" authorization in which you had to agree to be billed x amount per month for 24 months? If you agreed to that I don't think a lawyer can do very much for you. If you did agree to an instalment contract  to pay for both phones; did you question the rep as to why you must agree to pay for the phones at that time?

                 

                Art

                  • jamierothenberger

                    Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                    NO…..OF COURSE she didn't tell us that we were going to be billed for the

                    phone each month for 24 months.  That is exactly the issue.  She never read

                    any kind of legal authorization.  IN FACT, she sent over a contract via

                    email for my husband to look at which DID make it look like we would be

                    charged for the phones.  As he was on the phone with her getting signed up

                    when this happened he told her that he wasn't going to sign the document

                    because it did make it look like we were being billed monthly for the

                    phones.  Her exact words were "oh no, I will get it pushed through without

                    a signature, but rest assured you will be getting the promotion and not be

                    billed for the phones".  According to a lawyer that I contacted, we do have

                    legal legs to stand on since we never signed anything.

                     

                    Also, a store representative that I saw a few days ago to I could speak to

                    someone face to face said that tmobile does have the ability to pull phone

                    conversations so they could hear exactly what was said and I asked the

                    manager on the phone to do that and every time they said no.

                     

                    All, tmobile would have to do would provide a good discount on the phones

                    to keep me a somewhat happy customer.  Instead, they would rather stand by

                    this "we can not honer the promotion that was promised" and are going to

                    not only lose a customer but one also threatening legal action that will

                    surely cost them more money.  I just have never run into a company so

                    unwilling to right a wrong for a customer.

                      • artart

                        Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                        jamierothenberger wrote:

                         

                        NO…..OF COURSE she didn't tell us that we were going to be billed for the

                        phone each month for 24 months. That is exactly the issue. She never read

                        any kind of legal authorization. IN FACT, she sent over a contract via

                        email for my husband to look at which DID make it look like we would be

                        charged for the phones. As he was on the phone with her getting signed up

                        when this happened he told her that he wasn't going to sign the document

                        because it did make it look like we were being billed monthly for the

                        phones. Her exact words were "oh no, I will get it pushed through without

                        a signature, but rest assured you will be getting the promotion and not be

                        billed for the phones". According to a lawyer that I contacted, we do have

                        legal legs to stand on since we never signed anything.

                        Hi jamierothenberger

                        Sorry for the delay for my reply.

                        I am not as quick with my writing skills as others.  I also need time to carefully consider what I read and even more time to deliver an appropriate measured response.

                         

                        I felt it necessary to respond to snn_555 before responding to you since my response to you would build upon what I had to say to him. I would like to say that snn_555 is one of the most knowledgeable members in this community. He only replied with facts that would help explain the official procedures. He certainly was not accusing you of fraud. He was explaining that fraudsters would take advantage if T-Mo did not have certain policies in place. His advice to contact T-Force was a good one. Please take the time to read on and perhaps use my remarks to aid you in your discussion with T-Force.

                         

                        I am sure that you will eventually come to realize your accusations

                        that T-Mobile has a plan in place to defraud customers is not really the case. When threats are made to tarnish the reputation of a company without really understanding the actual issues involved, it is not really fair to that company. Remember how upset you were when you thought snn_555 was accusing you of committing fraud, although he specifically qualified his remarks that he wasn't talking about you.

                         

                        I submit to you for your objective consideration,

                        you actually are accusing T-Mobile of fraud, contending, or at least inferring, that T-Mobile has a systematic plan in place to defraud customers using bait and switch tactics. That would mean that thousands of T-Mobile employees would be knowingly participating in that nefarious plan as co conspirators. It would be absolutly impossible for that to happen without at least a few whistle blowers popping with proof that they were required to commit fraud as a condition of employment. On the other hand, some of T-Mobile's employees, who are human, sometime make mistakes. I assure employee mistakes are not in the best interests of T-Mobile.  T-Mobile has demonstrated to me over many years that they do remedy  employees mistakes . .  .eventually. 

                         

                        I myself at times have been frustrated by multiple employees

                        giving me bad information. At times the level of my frustration grew so high that when beginning a conversation with an employee, I began by saying;

                         

                        "You are probably a very nice person who is trying to work very hard to do your job and want to have a very good record as an employee. I assure you that you definitely don't want to be associated with my problem because you don't have the authority to provide a solution, and you definitely don't want me to lodge a complaint about you personally. You can't help me no matter how hard you try, so please connect with someone who can."

                         

                        I would refuse to discuss my problem until I got on the phone with someone who demonstrated to me that he or she had the proper job description which would include the authority of overiding the system and fixing my problem. T-Mobile always. .  . I repeat, T-Mobile always fixed the problem and compensated me to the extent that I came away from the experience liking T-Mobile more than ever. 

                         

                        I assure you that T-Mobile wants to keep you as a customer.

                        Furthermore T-Mobile wants you to be a happy customer. You will then tell your friends about how happy t-Mo makes and your friends will become T-Mobile customers.

                         

                        The T-Force team has access to people with authority

                        to override lower level decisions or mistakes.

                        When contacting T-Force I would encourage you to actually believe that you will be taken care of amicably. That way you won't feel threats or displays of anger will be necessary to get results. You will feel a lot better while having your problem resolved. Mentioning the lawyer subtly to clarify your main position probably won't hurt.  

                         

                        How about something like this:

                        "Good afternoon I was told by people in the T-Mobile Support Community that you people are the best at solving customers' problems when no one else can. Although my lawyer said I have grounds to file a lawsuit, a support community member thought that shouldn't be necessary. He said I should explain the situation to you.To begin with I never signed a contract and T-Mobile sent me two phones using the EIP plan. Obviously that was a big mistake on the part of the employee. My real problem is all of the other mistakes the employee made.

                         

                        From then on I am sure a mutually enjoyable back and forth dialogue will yeld some positive results. In any event please post back here and let us know how it went.

                         

                        Best Wishes.. . . Art

                      • stevetjr

                        Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                        Art,

                         

                        They were required to agree to pay for the phones because all of the "free" phone deals are via bill credit and of course other requirements to be met to get the credit, the most common of course is turning in your device from your other carrier.  They do it as an EIP so that if you don't fulfill the requirements they didn't just hand out a $800 phone without any ability to get it paid for them.  I mean can you see if you called in and just signed up for service and had 2 free iPhones sent out how many scam artists and no jamierothenberger I am not calling you one just pointing out that their are a lot out there, just search unlock my phone on this forum and you will find hundreds of folks sold a locked or blacklisted phone but anyway those scammers would have a field day.

                         

                        I have friends that got this deal but luckily it sounds like they had it explained to them a lot better as it was clear they were signing up for $24 month payment plan and that they would receive an offsetting bill credit each month which would make it free but if they leave then they would owe the balance of the plan. 

                          • jamierothenberger

                            Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                            But that isn't the case here!  I am a CUSTOMER….not a scam artist trying to

                            get a free phone.  I switched services and pay a monthly bill!  How does

                            that make me a scam artist??!!!  YOU are the ones who promised the deal….so

                            while you said "we were required to agree to pay for the phones" that just

                            isn't true.  We signed NOTHING and agreed to nothing on the phone except to

                            our monthly service payment.  All of this bashing of the customer is just

                            more fodder for my suit I am sorry to say.  Now I am being accused of

                            scamming a huge business?  Hilarious.

                            • jamierothenberger

                              Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                              It seems as though I am not the only one who was scammed…..this is

                              happening to loyal customer everywhere:

                               

                              https://www.reddit.com/r/tmobile/comments/5ok7hv/tmobile_scammed_me_in_the_iphone_7_tradein/

                               

                              At one point, i also received the same "you are not eligible now"

                              explanation which makes no sense as I am talking about what was told to me

                              when I called….not what I am eligible for now!

                              • artart

                                Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                                Hi stevetjr

                                Thanks for your explanation so that people reading the thread can understand the issues involved. I understand the reason for that audio contract authorization even if there would be a credit that negates the actual payment of the monthly charges. I simply wanted to address the lawsuit issue to try to calm things down a bit so we could try to see if there wasn't a way to help jamierothenberger. I find it difficult to be able to have a rational conversation with an angry person who is making threats and not wiling to ask for help to resolve his complaint. I wanted to point out the contract issue to get jaimieporthenberger to realize that would not be grounds for legal action. To my surprise he responded that he refused to accept the contract. To me that trums any of the other issues. If the employee agreed to an EIP without contract, that should make the case for the Op that the employee definitely did not follow procedure and T_Mo might be willing to evaluate Jamie's claim that he was given wrong information. The fact is as you alluded to thee company rep should not have conclued the purchase transaction if Jamie refused to sign an agreement.

                                 

                                Things seem to be getting a little heated and it is unfortunate that Jamie Rothenberger is becoming more upset even if we are only trying to help.

                                 

                                Art

                                  • jamierothenberger

                                    Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                                    Please understand I AM willing to ask for help to resolve this issue.  In

                                    fact, I have been on the phone with various TMobile representatives for the

                                    past 3 weeks asking for help.  I have now spent literally days and numerous

                                    hours on hold trying to get help with the issue….thus my frustration.  So

                                    far Tmobile has agreed to give me credits ranging from 50-100 dollars.

                                    When we are talking about 2 phones and 1400 my response was that 100 wasn't

                                    sufficient.  When I suggested that I will just return the phones and drop

                                    Tmobile I was told I would be liable for the phones no matter what and not

                                    paying would result in tmobile damaging my credit.

                                     

                                    So again, I think that you can see what lead to this level of frustration.

                                    It isn't that I am just upset and decided to threaten legal action….this is

                                    only after WEEKS of BEGGING for resolution only to be given the run-around

                                    by different support reps and ultimately be told this morning that nothing

                                    will be done and no matter what was said on the phone that we

                                    "misunderstood" the promotion so it wouldn't be honored.

                                      • stevetjr

                                        Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                                        jamierothenberger all your time on hold and etc is why I suggested T-Force (on FB, Twitter) versus standard customer support, they for lack of a better term are like tier 3 support and have a good track record of getting issues resolved. 

                                         

                                        They are saying you would be liable for the phones because while they don't have "service" contracts anymore they believe that you have a valid EIP (loan) for the phones and one of the requirements they have in all their (zero interest) EIP agreements is that if you cancel service that the balance of the loan comes due immediately which if you look at makes sense since why would any company want to provide you with an interest free loan if you aren't doing business with them. Again I understand this part apparently wasn't made clear but if you look at any of their printed, website, tv or etc promotional material with any of their free phone deals requires that you send in the old devices and that you will have to do it as an EIP in 24 installments but will get an offsetting credit essentially making the phone "free" but also keeps you from taking the phone and walking away after a month.

                                         

                                        With that being said I would see if you can get them to send you a copy of your EIP that you electronically signed or show that you verbally agreed to it. This might get things headed in the right direction or maybe even make it easier to just find a way to essentially get you the option to comply with the original promotion so you can get the offsetting bill credits and let you turn in the 2 old devices even though it's past the usual 30 day window.

                                         

                                        Just a thought, but I would definitely suggest T-Force versus 611 support.

                                        • Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                                          Looks like the thread got pretty long.  TL:DR:  If an agreement was sent over to be read before signing, those terms within it are what will prevail vs a sales rep's claims.

                                            • jamierothenberger

                                              Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                                              Yeah but it was never signed.....I just have never heard of the customer not being right.  You all have admitted that your sales person was in the wrong yet I am the one to pay the price.

                                               

                                              Sent from my iPhone

                                                • stevetjr

                                                  Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                                                  you still aren't reading everything, this is a user supported forum so when you say "you all admitted that your sales person was wrong", no one from T-Mobile is saying that, we are all customers.  Yes there are some TMO employees on this site but mostly they are here to moderate and they do also help but the are limited as they don't have access to customer accounts.

                                                   

                                                  What we "the users in this thread" have said is that apparently the sales rep wasn't clear base on what you are saying, we are of course taking your account/version of it but we don't know TMO's side and of course we never would since as customers we wouldn't be privy to your account either.

                                                   

                                                  Again I strongly encourage you to contact T-Force.

                                                  • Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                                                    If it was never signed then there is no agreement. However you did take possession of the equipment. So.....best bet is contacting T Force as was mentioned. Too much grey area for us to arbitrate even if we could.

                                        • stevetjr

                                          Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                                          jamierothenberger wrote:

                                           

                                           

                                           

                                          ,,,,,,. So we got roped in on the phone with the promise of a deal only to find out that the deal doesn't even exist!.....this is fraud!

                                           

                                           

                                           

                                          Well the deal does exist, it sounds like there was a communication issue with regards to the terms.  If you look at all of the TMO deals that involve "free" phones or pay break up fees for the last the 3-4 years they all require you to turn in your old devices from the other carrier.  Actually all the carriers when they run similar promotions have the same requirement.

                                           

                                          This is a user based support forum and the TMO folks on this site don't have access to accounts.  I would suggest reaching out to T-Force on either Facebook or Twitter, A lot of folks have had good results using T-Force to resolve issues.  Contact Us | T-Mobile Support

                                          • tmo_mike_c

                                            Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                                            Hey jamierothenberger

                                             

                                            I feel really bad that things have gone this far, and T-Mobile has gotten you upset. This is no fault of your own, but I think things might have gotten lost in translation when the promo was being explained to you when you first got this set up. Based on what you’re describing, this promo would require that the devices be traded in so you can redeem the offer. I know this has been said already but, reaching out to our T-Force team is the best chance we have at sorting this out. T-Force is a great team and they can open your account and look at this in more detail. They’ll do everything they can to give you the best resolution possible. I know after all the calls you’ve already made to get this handled, you might be a bit hesitant to reach out again, but I still feel like T-Force is worth contacting. If you haven’t already, you can message them through the Facebook or Twitter links on our Contact Us  page. My apologies for any confusion our rep may have caused, but we appreciate you coming to our support site to tell us about this.

                                             

                                            I also want to say thanks snn_555, artart , and stevetjr for jumping in on this thread. You all are awesome, amazing helpful, and I appreciate the support you give others on this site. Thanks guys!

                                        • stevetjr

                                          Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                                          jamierothenberger  First off this is user support forum and while there are some TMO employees here I and most here are not employees and those that are clearly have that identified on their names. 

                                           

                                          I think you need to go back and re-read my post because I clearly and distinctly said " I am not calling you one just pointing out that their are a lot out there"

                                           

                                          So I wasn't accusing you of anything!!  I even said that clearly the rep that you were talking to clearly didn't explain the program to you correctly and now you are stuck making payments to which I suggested you reach out to T-Force since they seem to have a pretty good reputation for getting issues resolved. I say that it wasn't explained to you correctly because if you look up any of their promotions that involve free phones you will see that the number one requirement (and is for all carriers) is to send in an equivalent number of old devices.

                                            • artart

                                              Re: BAIT AND SWITCH???

                                              jamierothenberger

                                              I would like to make some apologies and corrections to my previous replies:

                                              #1 I apologize to you Jamie, for constantly referring to you as "he".

                                              When you subsequently referred to your husband the word "OOPS" came to mind. The lesson I learned was to not assume a gender for a name which may apply to ether male or female.

                                               

                                               

                                              #2 There were two very knowledgeable Pillars of The Community who were attempting to help you. It was snn_555 who initially observed that you would have to be on an EIP in order to get a monthly credit for the free phones. I mistakenly mentioned that I was replying to snn_555 before you.

                                               

                                               

                                              #3 The other Pillar of The Community was stevetjr  who responded to my post to you. That was the post where I was making my observation to you, of a legal authorization requirement for accepting a 24 month installment plan with bill credits. It was Steve that I was responding to. It was also  Steve who was mentioning fraudsters and also suggested you contact T-Force.

                                               

                                               

                                              Sorry for any confusion.

                                               

                                               

                                              Art