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UlysseG's profile
UlysseG
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New Member

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30 Messages

Tue, Apr 26, 2022 12:39 PM

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Misrepresentation by salesperson in AT&T store

I live in France and had to travel to the US last month for a family emergency. I purchased a one-month prepaid phone at an AT&T store (store JQKP) and was told that after the one month I prepaid (I was only going to be in the US for a week) I would be able to unlock the phone and use it at home (in France). I made it clear to the salesman that I would be back home in Europe in a week and he repeated several times that there would be no problem unlocking it after the one month plus a possible waiting period of up to two weeks - that the phone belonged to me outright at the time of payment.

Once at home again I tried to unlock the phone through AT&T but I was told that I had to have prepaid 6 months of continuous service before I could unlock it. I spoke to the Prepaid customer service supervisor and he confirmed this. He also seemed to take no responsibility for what the salesman had told me.

I am extremely disappointed with this state of affairs, especially since I had been advised by family to go to AT&T rather than a cheap phone store because I could trust AT&T. And indeed, one would assume that a company like AT&T would take care not to engage in such practices in the interest of their reputation. Apparently not...

ACE - Sage

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98.7K Messages

4分前

At&t unlock policy is published, so no, they won't take responsibility.

The fact is all US prepaid carrier sold phones are locked for a minimum term of service.   Verizon, t-mo, AT&T, etc. 

sandblaster

ACE - Expert

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58.8K Messages

4分前

Sorry to say but you were flat out lied to. The ATT store you were in was probably an authorized retailer, that means not owned and operated by ATT. That’s still no excuse.

UlysseG

New Member

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30 Messages

4分前

I just talked to the store, which is a corporate store and not an authorized retailer, and was told by the salesman that he didn't know about the 6-month requirement and that "nobody else here in the store knows either." I tend to believe him. He said he would do what he could to get me the unlock code.

ATTHelp

Community Support

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195.8K Messages

4分前

Your kind of experience is not what we want for our customers, ! However, we want to advise that the ACEs are correct.

 

In order to unlock an AT&T PREPAID phone, the device is required to be active on the AT&T network for at least 6 months (60 days on AT&T Wireless) and must meet our other eligibility requirements:

  • The device must be designed for use on, and locked to, the AT&T wireless network. 
  • It must not be reported lost or stolen.
  • It’s not associated with fraudulent activity.
  • All the device’s service commitments and installment plans are completed, and all early termination fees are paid in full.
  • The device is not currently active on a different AT&T customer’s account.
  • If you performed an early upgrade, you must wait the 14-day buyer’s remorse period before you can request to unlock your previous device.
  • Visit our Unlock Support page for the full requirement list.

For complete details about unlocking a device from the network, visit AT&T Device Unlock Help - Solutions & FAQS.

 

Thank you for reaching out to AT&T Community Forums. We're here for assistance with AT&T products and services.

 

Lar, AT&T Community Specialist

JefferMC

ACE - Expert

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29.3K Messages

4分前

(60days on AT&T Wireless)

For your future information, Lar, although you'll probably not ever read this, or remember it, if not PREPAID, and the phone is purchased outright, the 60 day requirement goes away.  The way this is phrased on this page is:

  • You purchased your device with an installment or term agreement and:
    • You've had active AT&T service for at least 60 days.
    • You’ve paid off your installment agreement...

(i.e. the 60 day requirement is conditional on having an installment plan, if you never had one, the 60 day requirement no longer exists.)

However, PREPAID always has the 6 months requirement (as OP has learned).

(edited)

ACE - Sage

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98.7K Messages

4分前

@UlysseG

Bull manure.  You really believe that a corporate store manager does not know about the 6-month policy which has been standing policy for as long as at&t has had a prepaid section...? 

Lied to twice.

I hope it was a cheap phone. AT&T is under no obligation to unlock it and I see no way this person can unlock it. And they're counting on you having to go back home to France and not being able to do a darn thing about it.

(edited)

UlysseG

New Member

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30 Messages

4分前

Thanks for your answer, Lar, but the staff of the store - a corporate store, as I mentioned - say they are not aware of that 6-month requirement. It looks as though everybody but you and they (and I) knows about it.

I certainly agree that it doesn't make sense for a company like AT&T to allow such a thing to happen, or for them not to make good on a promise that was mistakenly made in one of their stores. An individual like me has no recourse except his or her ability to see to it that as many people as possible know exactly what happened. And that's what I intend to do.

UlysseG

New Member

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30 Messages

4分前

Responding to JefferMC:

In fact what was told to me was that the price I paid for the phone was the "own-outright" price, and that as soon as I walked out of the store I was the owner of the phone. To put that in the terms of your answer, the "term agreement" was for a one-month period. There is a line on my invoice that says "COMMITMENT SAVINGS $0.00", which to me implies that the price I paid was the full price. In fact, there was another, slightly cheaper phone on display in the store that day that did require a commitment, and I purposely chose the one I bought precisely because it (supposedly) did not require one.

ACE - Sage

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98.7K Messages

4分前

@UlysseG

Responding to JefferMC:

In fact what was told to me was that the price I paid for the phone was the "own-outright" price, and that as soon as I walked out of the store I was the owner of the phone. To put that in the terms of your answer, the "term agreement" was for a one-month period. There is a line on my invoice that says "COMMITMENT SAVINGS $0.00", which to me implies that the price I paid was the full price. In fact, there was another, slightly cheaper phone on display in the store that day thatdidrequire a commitment, and I purposely chose the one I bought precisely because it (supposedly) did not require one.

Not true at all.

Every single phone sold in the USA by any service provider has a minimum 60 day lock.   Absolutely nothing AT&T sells is unlocked.  Nothing sold for prepaid is sold "full price".  Prepaid phones are always discounted, which is why they can be locked.

UlysseG

New Member

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30 Messages

4分前

Responding to formerlyknownas: You're being pretty harsh with the people at the AT&T corporate store. You're telling me that they would knowingly fail to inform me of the real policy in order to sell a cheap phone, and take advantage of my being a foreign resident? If that's true, then things look even worse for AT&T and their reputation.

No, I think that what happened is that I purchased the phone outright (see my comment just above) and prepaid for a month of service, and that prepayment is being construed as a kind of 6-month term agreement. Isn't that what the "COMMITMENT SAVINGS $0.00" means to you? Anyway to me "COMMITMENT SAVINGS $0.00" = "COMMITMENT 0".

AT&T and their people need to make some things a little clearer if they don't want to look like some very sleazy operators.

Or maybe that's just the world we live in nowadays?

UlysseG

New Member

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30 Messages

4分前

"Prepaid phones are always discounted, which is why they can be locked." So what does "COMMITMENT SAVINGS $0.00" mean?

UlysseG

New Member

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30 Messages

4分前

...or doesn't it mean anything?

sandblaster

ACE - Expert

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58.8K Messages

4分前

ATT sells many phones, some are actually branded as prepaid phones, others are not. Prepaid phones are normally sold at a discount but not always. Whether a prepaid phone is sold at a discount or not, the 6 month requirement to unlock still applies. If you bought a phone not specifically branded as prepaid, the “no commitment” tag would waive the 60 day requirement for service if you had gotten postpaid service. Unfortunately, once a prepaid SIM card is put into any phone whether it was specifically branded as a prepaid phone or not, ATT’s system automatically applies the 6 month requirement. I believe this is a fault of ATT’s system. So, if you bought a phone not branded as prepaid and paid full retail price for it, there really is no reason for imposing a 6 month requirement but the system does anyway once activated on prepaid service.

ACE - Sage

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98.7K Messages

4分前

@UlysseG

You're being pretty harsh with the people at the AT&T corporate store. You're telling me that they would knowingly fail to inform me of the real policy in order to sell a cheap phone, and take advantage of my being a foreign resident?

That's what they did.  There is no way they don't know.  Every single employee goes to 'school' before they even hit the sales floor, to learn the basics that are required.  The lock policy is 101 material.  And because every US carrier has at least some kind of a lock policy for every single phone, it's inconceivable that they would not know. 

If that's true, then things look even worse for AT&T and their reputation.

Not every person or store lies to customers.  You are bad luck that you got one we're not only the employees but even the manager is willing to look someone in the face and tell them a bold-faced lie. 

No, I think that what happened is that I purchased the phone outright (see my comment just above) and prepaid for a month of service, and that prepayment is being construed as a kind of 6-month term agreement.

No honey, your were lied to.  The policy is for all At&t phones. 

Isn't that what the "COMMITMENT SAVINGS $0.00" means to you? Anyway to me "COMMITMENT SAVINGS $0.00" = "COMMITMENT 0".

I have actually never seen that sign and I suspect that the manager of the store made that up to bolster his untrue statements and Shady business practice.  Please make sure you confirm the address of this particular location directly to AT&T so that they can replace the store personnel with people that don't lie to customers. 

AT&T and their people need to make some things a little clearer if they don't want to look like some very sleazy operators.

Or maybe that's just the world we live in nowadays?

As I said, they are not all underhanded Liars. Unfortunately you found an entire store full.  I have no doubt that the manager is directly at fault for the behavior of his employees, and that he encourages on ethical Behavior. The best thing AY&T can do is replace everyone at that location from the top down.

It does happen. Where I live in Connecticut I am within a half an hour's Drive of about five or six AT&T corporate store locations. One of them was Notorious for having incompetent unkempt, and untrustworthy employees. That store had a change in management and a good clean out, and now is actually very good.   But it took complaints direct to get it done

UlysseG

New Member

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30 Messages

4分前

Responding to formerly;

"I have actually never seen that sign and I suspect that the manager of the store made that up to bolster his untrue statements and Shady business practice."

Can we assume that none of the other experts on this forum has heard of the line "COMMITMENT SAVINGS $0.00" being on an invoice from AT&T?

Again you're being pretty tough on the folks at that store... Honey. After all, it's on Magazine Street, the Rodeo Drive of New Orleans. I'm not saying I don't trust you, but I prefer to wait and see if anybody knows more about that invoice line... or is willing to take some responsibility for my situation.

Meanwhile I'm posting to several other cell-phone forums to see if anyone there knows anything.

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