Responds Shorts: From Freezers to Overcharges

NBC 7 Responds looks at three recent cases where the unit helped consumers retrieve their money after months of calls went nowhere.

Jim Flores of Escondido wrote into NBC 7 Responds when he was having trouble with his LG Refrigerator. Jim said the freezer was warm and quit making ice. 

The fridge was two-years-old but Jim said the technician told him there was a leak in the sealed system that he couldn’t fix. 

Jim said LG charged him for the visit and an extended warranty but the technicians sent to his house didn't fix the problem. Jim told LG his fridge came with a 7-year warranty but nothing changed until he contacted NBC 7 Responds. 

After NBC 7 Responds contacted LG, the company sent a technician to Jim’s house who replaced the fridge's compressor and the company refunded Jim for the extended warranty he purchased, an overall savings of 600 dollars. 

Carrie Burkhart of El Cajon contacted NBC 7 Responds after going over the bills of her recently deceased mother. 

Carrie said she discovered her mother had been paying more than $36 a month for an emergency lifeline service through Philips. When she checked the website, she said the cost was listed as $29.95. Carrie said she felt her mother had been overcharged since 2013. 

Carrie said she called Lifeline and asked for the amount overcharged to be refunded but the company she said was rude to her. Carrie said she was told there was "no way to issue refunds", so she turned to NBC 7 Responds. 

After speaking with Philips Lifeline, the company told NBC 7 Responds Carrie's mother was notified of the price increase but the company said Carrie should not have been treated rudely. 

Philips offered Carrie an apology and a refund check of $352.76. 

In an email, a spokesperson with Philips Lifeline said, “We value our customers and their loyalty to Philips Lifeline. We regret that we did not live up to the expectations of this customer, and we have followed up on Ms. Burkhart’s inquiry. We appreciate the opportunity to address this matter. We have reviewed the account and recent service interaction and determined that although pricing changes over time were correct, and that advance notice was provided each time according to company policy, Ms. Burkhart’s recent contact with our service team may have been better handled. Additionally, as the customer has had a longtime account with Philips Lifeline, we are able to provide discretionary account changes in their favor. We are in discussions with Ms. Burkhart at this time regarding next steps.” 

Barb Engle of La Mesa said she was shocked by her phone bill when she says she switched her phone service to Cox but no one told her that the change would cancel her current long distance provider. 

That's important to Barb because she said she calls her mother in Germany every week. Instead of the low-cost charge she usually got, Barb got a bill for three calls totaling more than $500. 

Barb said she had no idea her old provider had been canceled. She said she explained all of this to a Cox representative who offered to take off the long distance charges, but that never happened. 

After months of trying to settle the matter, Barb said Cox told her the credit to her account was denied. She turned to NBC 7 Responds. 

After NBC 7 Responds asked Cox to review her bills, the company had a change of heart and Barbara received a refund check of $541.94. 

Both LG and Cox Communications declined to comment on this story, citing customer privacy rules.

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