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TotalGamer's profile



1 Message

Tue, Nov 8, 2016 6:45 AM

GoPhone AutoPay Set-Up incorrect

For the past 2 months I have been having MAJOR issues with the autopay system for AT&T. I got my phone in June or July and I was using the physical pay stations at the AT&T stores. Those worked great when I went in. I was on the $45 plan and I only had to pay $45 (No taxes or fees included so a flat $45).

Then August roled around and I had to move off to finish off college. So I decided to set-up the autopay option for my gophone due to the fact that driving to a physical location is extremely difficult let alone expensive for my college situation.

So I went into the AT&T physical store to have them help me get the basics down on my account i.e. name and number stuff. I then went home and used the link that the AT&T data/text messages were telling me to go to for the gophone service. The link that I followed (given by AT&T messages) is Which when I logged in I was sent to the off website of I followed all the steps that I needed to set up my autopay.

I put in the rest of my autopay information (routing number and account number and billing address) and some other stuff that it needed. 

The website told me that I was now enrolled in autopay. YAY (NOT). I was told that from then on I would be paying $40. What it didn't tell me was that the taxes would put my account over $45 upwards of $46. So I started off the account paying a flat $45 in person and now was paying $46 (able to use my other address to change it to $44.66 which REALLY DOES NOT SAVE ALL THAT MUCH MONEY!!! (sorry I am so fustrated no one can give me straight answers on the rest of my issue).

So I got my bill down to $44.66 and I wouldn't have to drive to a store(great for college). But the month ends and I'm told that my autopay is denied. I thought that was strange but I figured I might have typed something wrong and so I went online to check. Apparently I cann't edit my checking account OR routing number. SO I DID DRIVE WAY OUT OF MY WAY TO THE STORE FOR HELP. (again sorry for caps I am just so frustrated and tired with this).

I got to the store (I recognize they are a private contractor deal but they shoul still be able to help without the GIANT WAITS AND CALLING CUSTOMER SERVICE THEMSELVES). I wasted probably 2.5 hours just waiting for one of the 3 technician people to finish the customers in front of me. I have no problem with waiting but this is not the first issue of waiting that I have had to deal with at these stores just the first for the gophone issue. 

Finally I got a technician who I explained my autopay request was "denied." He did not know what was going on so he called customer service which WAS NO HELP (seriously train them to immediately transfer you to billilng or somewhere when you have a billing issue) because we wasted a half (technician included) just sitting and giving information for the CS to tell us that the transaction was denied (like THAT IS WHY WE ARE CALLING).

SO we got transfered to billing. This was another 20 minute wait or so. The answer that they gave us was it was denied (like NO DUH). But they did give us a place to start, which they said "the bank denied the request." Now that might have been true because it is one of those rural farm banks that are a little behin the times on policies and stuff.

So I figured I would take the hour rive out to the middle of nowhere to check with the bank. But before that, my account was going to expire the following day and so I had to pay the bill. So since I was physically there I decided to go and pay there. I had a friend with me who had a credit card and so we paid with that. Well while we were on the phone with the CS and technician the CS told me that I was removed from autopay due to the bank's "denial." Well when we used the credit card, I was charged $45 PLUS $4.66 (WHICH INCLUDES A E-CHECK FEE). This was a PHYSICAL PAYMENT NOT ONLINE AND THOSE TAXES/FEES NEVER AND I MEAN NEVER had been included before on any physical payments (all 3 were flat fees before I set up the autopay). AGAIN I had been unenrolled and removed from autopay yet I was being charged taxes and fees for it. 

So I called customer service which basically told me too bad they cann't refund ANY FEES/TAXES they best I could do was get credit towards next month. So yeah getting charge excess money and told it cann't be returned even though it had never been charged before. 

So a few days later I finally foun time to make the trip to the bank (probably 4 days later). We got ahold of a bank manager and checked whether we needed any special permissions for special policies that might have been dening the requests. Well they pulled up the account history an guess what, NO REQUEST HAD EVEN BEEN RECIEVED BY THE BANK. So how can a bank DENY a request that was never recieved. AT&T this is on YOUR SERVICES of the requests not being sent correctly or WHATEVER. It is not the bank's fault which is basically a quote from 2 of your "TRAINED EMPLOYEES" [CS and billing NOT THE TECHNICIAN]. 

After that I figure MAYBE I type the account wrong. NOPE. EVERYTHING WAS THE SAME WHEN I TRIED TO "UPDATE" the payment methods. 

So tonight I my account renews in 2 days on the 9th. So I called customer service again. I had changed what I could with the checking account and routing number (but no actual notification is displayed telling you if it was changed or not). I called the CS to make sure it was all put in there correctly. 

I explained the whole month before's issue and that I wanted them to type in the checking account info themselves to make sure it was typed correctly(again gophone website does not say whether your account has been updated if the last 4 account digits are the same). So the CS typed in the account and then asked if I would be willing to allow a $1 or so charge to be sent to the bank to see if the bank would (get this) "accept it this time." GUESS WHAT HAPPENED NEXT. An error of the request was "denied" (again told it was the bank's fault) was recieved again.

I finally had the CS transfer me to some billing lady in the billing department. After HOURS on hold (apparently not the only one with billing issues) I got someone. I spoke with her for probably 30 minutes or so. She told me something that was COMPLETELY different from what I had been told previously by 3 other "TRAINED EMPLOYEES." She said the $1 charge would NEVER go through due to me not being on that kind of plan (so I was charged $1 for no service or anything just money to AT&T). Then she proceded to tell me something that was not even on the gophone website. This is what she said, "you have to do a minimum of $10 or between a maximum of $25." She said this was because the checking account apparently had to be "approved and tied to the phone account." So I asked if she coul charge the $10 fee deal. What happened was she tried getting me to agree to paying not only the $10 from my checking account and the other $34.66 in person at a store she tried telling me that for the first month of autopay I had pay the $49.66 because the $5 "discount" does not apply that first month.

Which again I was enrolled LAST MONTH AND PAID $49.66 in physical person (I just did not pay the $10 fee from my checking account[fee is not really the right word but not much else I could say]). I finally explained after like 10 minutes that I had been enrolled and so I got her to note I was paying $41 (I know 1 dollar [probably waving the taxes but keeping the e-check fee]) because "the system cannot process a $40 charge for autopay." 

Finally she tried sending the $10 charge to the bank. GUESS WHAT. It was denied again and I was told that it was the bank's fault AGAIN (I had to explain no it wasn't and she had to [i guess since the line went dead for a few seconds] check with a superior). Finally I told her that I just wanted the EXACT error message that the AT&T system was giving her as to why the "bank" was denying the check. For 10-15 minutes I had to explain I just wanted the error message and it wasn't the bank's fault. Here is a direct quote for the system (YES she did not use correct grammar because she had an Southeastern-Asian accent) "System is not accepting the check." So broken grammar (what might have been making me a little stressed because it was so hard to understand). After getting her to tell me the "system not accepting the check," I got to her to find a reason for the computer error message. What she said was that verifying the orer was not good enough. LIKE WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN. The account is in a living person's name with enough money and is completely working (haven't had any other bill issues from it), it is in good standing with the bank at all. So yeah apparently the check is NOT GOOD ENOUGH (not really sure WHAT that means). She also gave me the error code which was like A1... I didn't care to write it down because most CS and other "TRAINED EMPLOYEES" don't really unerstand computer error messages they call IT and I cann't. She then told me that my checking account would not work (checked with a supervisor I know because she told me) and that if I wanted autopay I would have to give a credit/debit card.

AGAIN I am a college student living month to month LITERALLY WITH NO EXCESS CASH TO PAY OUTLANDISH COLLEGE STUDENT CREDIT CARD FEES. I'm on a gophone because I can't due the whole contract without good credit same reason for not having credit cards. So now every month I am going to have to waste the gas money (which is basically a small meal for me) to pay my phone bill PLUS THE EXCESS $4.66 in TAXES AND FEES BECAUSE I NOW HAVE AN ADDRESS TIED TO MY ACCOUNT THAT I CANN'T GET RID OF EVEN IF I DECIDE TO JUST GO AND LIVE ON THE ROAD. I might graduate and decide to just travel as much as possible before settling down but now I have an address tied to the account so I will always have some fees an taxes (even that pesky e-check fee for paying in the flesh). 

So yeah in all I have spent probably over 24 HOURS dealing with this autopay. Four HOURS AND FOURTY-THREE MINUTES AND THIRTY-NINE SECONDS OF WHICH WAS TONIGHT INSTEAD OF MY HOMEWORK TO GRADUATE (YAY [:(]). I really just want a working account autopay and I don't want that address in there because I might travel for a few years soon, never know and I don't want to be charged based on where I WOULN'T BE LIVING. 

I've had you guys for roughly 7 months and already I am ready to leave and switch to a carrier that doesn't cover my area as much just for a better customer service deal. I don't like being charged for stuff I DON'T RECIEVE/AGGREE TO ANY SERVICE or like finding out A MONTH LATER THAT THERE IS A SPECIAL WAY TO SET UP A CHECKING ACCOUNT WITH MY PHONE.


Sorry if there is any missing letters in some words my keyboard is going out and it is now 12:45AM here so a little tired.




Community Support


196.2K Messages


Hi @TotalGamer!


That’s definitely an excruciating experience, I think anyone would be ready to jump ship after going through so much nonsense!


Were any investigations or troubleshooting steps ever tried at any point? Many times the more generic payment failed errors do say to refer to the financial institution.


This is sometimes accurate, but there can be other root causes as well that are simply not very clear from a surface level. Regardless, we would be glad to look into this with you, if we’ve failed to do so as of yet.


Have any alternative payment methods succeeded?


What you’ve mentioned about the taxes and fees is true, however once the autopay is up and running the refill amount would be something like this.


EX. The plan is $45, autopay gives a $5 discount. However with taxes and fees included the amount of $40 will likely be short. So with the discount, your ideal refill amount would look more like $41.50 (depending on your area).


My apologies again for all the trouble this has caused you. Please let us know if there are any questions you have, or if we can look into that payment method further with you.


Thanks for reaching out! Best of luck with your homework!


Demetria, AT&T Community Specialist

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