to not pay this bill?

(64 Posts)
HeyNannyNanny Thu 29-Sep-16 12:29:01

Around 8 months ago I took out a flexible, rolling contract for a data only Sim to use in my MiFi device.

(Its basically a portable WiFi hub that runs on a Sim Card)

In store, I was sold a package for £7.50 a month which gave me 2GB of data. I explained my internet usage to the rep at the shop (it was to run a business from an industrial unit) and he assured me that this would be more than enough data, but if not I could always up my contract. This contract was 30 days rolling and could be cancelled at anytime.

Several months later I decided to cancel my contract as, to be honest, the signal strength from this provider was crap.

Suddenly a £60 bill arrives on my doorstep.
When I query this bill I am told that in the final month I exceeded my data usage by about 200mb.
However, according to this I only had 1GB allowance (rather than the 2GB I was sold).

I got back to them and politely explained that I had not exceeded my allowance as I had 2GB allowance, and linked them to their 2GB package online.

They replied: "Unfortunately name of company will not be able to compensate you for the charges you incurred. I am sorry that you were missold.

I replied that this was not good enough, referred them to the Consumer Rights Act and stated that firstly I should not have incurred the charges, as I had not exceeded the allowance I was sold and secondly that even if I HAD exceeded my allowance, it was grossly unfair for them to charge 720% more than my initial contract cost, for a 20% overage.

They replied that they can "only imagine how frustrating this experience must be" and "not the way we want our valued customers to feel" and told me to visit the store I purchased from.

Except I can't, as I now live 200 miles away.
I told them this and they have simply stated that I owe them the £60 and they are "sorry for any inconvenience"

AIBU to think that I should NOT pay this charge?

This has been going on for 4 months now.
We don't really have £60 to give away at the moment.

To make matters more infuriating, I've recently checked my credit score and this comes up as an unpaid bill and has HUGELY affected my rating.

Sorry for the essay blush

HeyNannyNanny Thu 29-Sep-16 12:31:56

Sorry, I've reread and its a bit messy sad

To clarify - I used 1.2GB out of 2GB allowance.

Soubriquet Thu 29-Sep-16 12:34:18

If the paperwork says you have 2GB then you have 2GB

That's what the contract says, that's what you signed

Fight it

HeyNannyNanny Thu 29-Sep-16 12:36:40

Soubriquet there is no paperwork unfortunately angry. The rep at the shop said that it would all be uploaded online and gave me details to access an online account but he uploaded my details incorrectly (spelt my name wrong despite having scanned my ID and incorrect email address) so I couldn't access it.

HermioneJeanGranger Thu 29-Sep-16 12:37:00

Do you have a letter or e-mail from them confirming you bought a 2GB package? If not, I don't think you have a leg to stand on sad

PigletJohn Thu 29-Sep-16 12:39:19

Was the cancellation date part-way through the billing month?

Soubriquet Thu 29-Sep-16 12:41:25

Oh dear

No paperwork so no proof?

I don't know where you can go from there really

HeyNannyNanny Thu 29-Sep-16 12:41:29

Do you have a letter or e-mail from them confirming you bought a 2GB package? If not, I don't think you have a leg to stand on

I can't find anything at all as they took my details down incorrectly. I filled out a form in store and definitely wrote them correctly (I'm a bit anal about forms) but the guy copied them down incorrectly.
I can be a bit dippy sometimes but I can spell my own name.

Was the cancellation date part-way through the billing month? I'm not sure, but it involved giving notice until the next bill, IYSWIM

Sugarcoma Thu 29-Sep-16 12:41:58

Sounds like it's worth fighting - my top tips are communicate by letter only; include as many details as possible (dates, times etc) and copies of paperwork (e.g. the contract). My average is usually three complaint letters before the company rolls over and realises it's more hassle to keep arguing with me (although sometimes that doesn't work and I have to threaten small claims court).

HeyNannyNanny Thu 29-Sep-16 12:42:16

Though even if I can't prove that the contract was 2GB rather than 1GB, surely it isn't legal to charge me £53 for a 20% overage?

MatildaTheCat Thu 29-Sep-16 12:43:27

If you can't prove it then sadly I would pay. As you say it does affect your credit rating. I have a friends whose dp missed a final payment on his phone contract in error. That oversight has cost them thousands of pounds because when they applied for a mortgage he was classed as high risk and they could only get a stupidly high interest rate.

You could try tweeting on their website etc and writing to the chief executive but without evidence I don't think they will budge.

HeyNannyNanny Thu 29-Sep-16 12:44:09

Thanks sugarcoma (love the name) I have been keeping it all via email, though thats more to me being an absolute doormat - I can just about be assertive in writing but find it impossible verbally/face to face.

HermioneJeanGranger Thu 29-Sep-16 12:46:25

If you can't prove it, you'll have to pay. Surely £60 is worth sorting your credit score out for?

It sucks, though.

HeyNannyNanny Thu 29-Sep-16 12:47:22

OFCOM say

* any charge that is higher than the actual costs a company incurs is likely to be ruled as unfair; and

* customers who hold back an amount they are disputing should not be seen and charged as 'late payers'.

which is vaguely reassuring

HeyNannyNanny Thu 29-Sep-16 12:51:08

Surely £60 is worth sorting your credit score out for?

We're not going to be applying for a mortgage for another 18 months so I'm holding out for now. We've just moved to London and paid a HUGE deposit on a flatshare, first rent upfront plus furnishings and I'm the only earner as DP has just finished his PhD.

If I can avoid forking out £60 because a multi-million pound business has made and error and is being a dick about it, I will.

HermioneJeanGranger Thu 29-Sep-16 12:53:21

But if you don't have proof of your original contract, how do you plan to fight the charges?

ChickyDuck Thu 29-Sep-16 12:53:24

Twitter is your friend here! I have had many a great customer services success via Twitter. Try tweeting the issue to them?

HeyNannyNanny Thu 29-Sep-16 12:57:17

HermioneJeanGranger

On the naive basis that they will revoke them based on the fact it is excruciatingly unfair to charge someone 720% for minor overuse, plus the fact that they are not advertising these charges anywhere.

They also sell the package online that I am subscribed to, and I paid the same monthly amount as this package - so logically that is the one that I have.

I'm not holding my breath though sad

Yes, I will try Twitter now smile

itsnotfair10 Thu 29-Sep-16 12:58:16

Can you use bank statements as proof of what you were paying which I presume matches up with their charges advertised?

HeyNannyNanny Thu 29-Sep-16 13:02:24

itsnotfair10 good idea, I'll track those down

CoolCarrie Thu 29-Sep-16 13:02:51

I bet it was Vodaphone!! Been there, same shit! One of those little hub things to use in our flat elsewhere, crap connection, lousy service I ending up paying the money for the sake of credit rating, but we had time constraints at the time, which you don't have so fight it and good luck!

HermioneJeanGranger Thu 29-Sep-16 13:04:07

If you have proof of payment (bank statements) you might stand a chance. Have you e-mailed their CEO? I find that often gets results quicker than going via general customer services.

Witch91 Thu 29-Sep-16 13:04:39

You could contact ombudsman services, and there is lots of helpful information on their website:
www.ombudsman-services.org/complaining-to-the-company-communications.html

I had an issue with my previous mobile phone provider where I was told I had bought a month to month sim but it was put through the system as a year long sim with a cancellation charge. I ended up paying the cancellation charge but went through the ombudsman and got a refund. They were very helpful.

YelloDraw Thu 29-Sep-16 13:05:41

I had a similar experience (sold a contract with [x], used [x], then got billed for it at a v high rate as an extra).

Luckily I had sorted contact over the phone so you would think there was prof, but O2 had conveniently lost the phone records... in the end after spending hours and hours on the phone I got them to wipe the charges.

However if you did it in a shop it will be much harder to get back :-(

HeyNannyNanny Thu 29-Sep-16 13:07:11

My ex had SO many problems with O2 it was a nightmare.
Not Vodaphone either, but I've heard bad things.

This is Carphone Warehouse, their ID mobile service.
Never again.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now