Family Phone Plan Turned Fiasco

A Rancho San Diego woman tried to take advantage of a popular phone deal but months later, started receiving calls from collections. She called NBC 7 Responds for help.

It’s a pretty common deal: switch phone carriers and the new company will buy out your previous contract. 

Keri Persky out of Rancho San Diego thought it sounded like a great idea when she heard about Verizon’s new buyout program. 

“We were trying to consolidate to only have one bill, so we were transferring our family account from Sprint to have one bill with Verizon instead of having two,” Keri said. 

The family account would merge with her husband's existing Verzion account. The deal included new phones and Verizon paying off her old phone account. 

But they had to turn in the phones from their previous carrier. 

“We handed over my Sprint phone there at the Verizon store and my daughter, who lived in Riverside, mailed her’s in because it had to come directly to the store,” Keri said. 

Everything was working out great until Keri started getting bills and collections notices from her old phone carrier Sprint, saying her account was never paid off. 

Three months after they switched, Verizon told Keri she didn’t qualify for the special Verizon offer because her husband’s account was a business account. 

Keri says that was never mentioned when they signed up at the Verizon store. 

“I don’t think it’s my job to know their policy, I feel it’s Verizon employee’s job to know their policy and educate me as the customer,” Keri said. 

Keri says she talked to 10 different people at Verizon trying to straighten out the problem, but nothing seemed to work, so she contacted NBC 7 Responds for help. 

“It would be amazing if I could just get what I was promised,” Keri said. 

We reached out to Verizon and they promised a thorough investigation. At first, Verizon offered Keri’s family a partial refund but after we walked them through the situation, Verizon honored what was originally promised and covered all of the costs for Keri’s Sprint plan, totaling over $2,000. 

A spokesperson for Verizon told us through email, “We try to deliver the best possible experience for each and every Verizon customer. In this case, we did not deliver on that promise. We appreciate NBC 7 Responds for bringing this issue to our attention and for giving us the opportunity to do the right thing for our customer."

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