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Thu, Apr 7, 2022 2:24 PM

Returned Equipment but Already Paid Fee for Not Returning Equipment

I paid the fee charged to my account for not returning my equipment (the router/modem for my fiber internet service that I had before cancelling my account). However, I found the equipment and just returned it the other day. How and when can I receive a refund for the fee I paid for not returning the equipment? Thank you. 

Accepted Solution

Official Solution

ACE - Expert


22.8K Messages


From Internet Terms of Service:

f. Return of AT&T Equipment:


Except as otherwise provided, AT&T Equipment must be returned to AT&T undamaged, within twenty-one (21) calendar days after your Service is terminated for any reason. If equipment is not returned within twenty-one (21) calendar days, or is returned damaged, you will be charged a Non-Return Equipment Fee. We may retain any advance payment or deposit, or portion thereof that previously had not been refunded, if you fail to return the AT&T Equipment within this time period. If all AT&T Equipment is returned within six (6) months of termination, any fees charged for such AT&T Equipment will be refunded (other than fees for damages). No refunds will be made for AT&T Equipment returned more than six (6) months after termination. This Paragraph also applies if your existing equipment is replaced or upgraded for any reason.


Community Support


195.2K Messages


Great question about the non-returned equipment charges, NGordon84


You have stated that you paid the non-equipment charge already, but you have located the equipment and sent it in, but would like a refund for the payment made.


In a normal situation, the equipment that has been sent in and the charge never hits the bill. In your case, the charge hit the bill and you paid it, thus it brings the balance to 0. Normally the non-equipment charge is a part of the final bill. If we were to refund that charge, then it would bring the account to a negative or in the red status. 


We do have a time limit of "21 business days" for equipment to be returned. If equipment is returned outside that window, the non-equipment charge is valid and is needing to be paid in order to avoid the collections process. If the fee is paid and equipment is returned, no refund is issued, because it was full bill payment and not a partial payment. If you would like to dispute this process you can give our "Billing Team" a call at 1-800-288-2020


You can find out more information about the AT&T equipment return policy, please read over the information included in the "Read this before you return your equipment" support article. 


If there is anything else that we can do for you, please let us know. 


Thank you for the question that you posted with the AT&T Community Forums. 

Matthew, AT&T Community Specialist


ACE - Guru


6K Messages


Wow, that's a lot of words to essentially say you're (Edited per community guidelines). 🙄


my thoughts



19.3K Messages


When did you cancel your service?

When did you return the equipment ?

There was a point in time with Covid that ATT was extending the time line for returns… beyond the standard.

However if the dates in question are more than six months, there would be no refund of paid equipment. If within 60 to 90 days will want to see what the policy in effect was at time of returning.

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