Fraud Alert - iPhone trade in

fijilaw

    I sent my old iPhone via UPS to tmobile as part of the promotion to receive $300 bill credit (over 24 months) when you buy an iPhone 8 or 8+ and trade in an iPhone 6 or newer.  My phone was in perfect condition and had been fully reset for the trade in. Tmobile is telling my that my phone has "water damage" and that they won't give me the $300 credit.  Seeing as I was using the phone prior to putting it in the box for shipment, and considering that it was not water damaged and it great working order, something is going on at Tmobile or the company that processes the trade ins.  Who can I contact?  What can I do short of taking tmobile to small claims court?

      All replies

      • tmo_mike_c

        Re: Fraud Alert - iPhone trade in

        Aw, that's so rough fijilaw. Were you told this over the phone or did you get some kind of email notification? Is it possible that the phone could have been around a place with humidity or moisture in the air? That's just a guess, but that's the only other thing I can think of as to why it would show up as having liquid damage. I'm guess you also turned off the Find My iPhone right? If you have already spoken with someone about this over the phone, what did they say?

        • tmo_chris

          Re: Fraud Alert - iPhone trade in

          Hey fijilaw,

           

          Just checking in here to see how things are going. Did you get a chance to speak with our customer care team yet? If so, what did they say?

          • tmo_marissa

            Re: Fraud Alert - iPhone trade in

            Hiya, fijilaw. We wanted to touch base with you once more to see if you've had a chance to work with an internal team for any insight into what's happened with the device that you shipped for the trade-in. Were you able to get any information about this?

              • fijilaw

                Re: Fraud Alert - iPhone trade in

                After talking with a number of Tmobile customer service reps and Lacy W at the Solutions Center, I was credited the $300 dollars. When Lacy looked up my trade in, the explanation for the denial of the promotional credit said "water damage" and only provided an IMEI number.  There was no picture evidencing any damage.  So, in short, I got lucky there was no picture.  Had their been a picture (I couldn't imagine what the picture would look like except a phone in mint condition), the issue would have still remained - there would have been a claim of damage to my trade in when no damage existed before it reached tmobile's warehouse.  My phone was sent in perfect condition, and already reset to factor settings like a brand new phone.  There was no water damage or any other physical damage.  What this shows me is that there is an issue on Tmobile's end that needs to be addressed.  There is zero protection for customers who send in their phone. No way to protect them from fraudulent warehouse claims or errors by the warehouse.  If someone is thinking about sending in a trade in, my advice is don't do it. I don't know what happened in my case (I want to believe it was an accidental error by a warehouse employee), but the entire process was a debacle.  From the 10-15 employees with whom I spoke over a couple weeks to determine how to get my trade in to tmobile (including two visits to tmobile stores because I was told I could trade it in there - i couldn't as I bought my phone and signed up for service over the phone).  Frankly, I have lost any confidence I had in tmobile after this incident.  I have also wasted a lot of time to rectify this issue. I felt helpless having tmobile tell me my phone was in a condition that I know was untrue. Is there any auditing of how phones are inspected?  I am still looking for an answer as to what happened in my situation.

                  • tmo_marissa

                    Re: Fraud Alert - iPhone trade in

                    First off, fijilaw, I am so relieved to read that this was handled for you. I wish I could speak to what happened when your phone was inspected and why an incorrect entry was input, but I'm sorry to say I'm at a loss there. When deferred return trade-ins arrive at the Assurant warehouse, and items are found to be in a condition that lowers or cancels the trade-in value, they are always supposed to take photos of the condition and those photos are saved to a database that is accessible by T-Mobile representatives. In the case of water damage, the database would have held a link to a picture of a tripped LDI (liquid damage indicator) that would have been uploaded by the Assurant warehouse employee who inspected the device. That same link should be forwarded by Assurant when a trade-in is revalued, and I believe they also send a message offering the opportunity to accept the updated value (sometimes if the phone is simply a different make/model, the value decreases but doesn't drop to zero) or to have the phone returned to the customer.

                     

                    Since there was no photo here, you're right, that's definitely an error; and I'm really glad that the promotion was awarded appropriately. Errors like this shouldn't exist *at all*, but we have the photo measure as a safeguard against entry error when the phones are inspected by Assurant. It's valuable feedback that this escalation process took so much effort on your part; we should have been able to investigate this the very first time you reached out and make it right in that instant. I'm so sorry it took so long -- while I'm glad that it was ultimately taken care of, thank you for coming back to let us know how it played out. We'll forward the feedback about this interaction to our equipment programs team.

                     

                    - Marissa