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Suggestion to stop mislead and overcharge elderly customer

Suggestion to stop mislead and overcharge elderly customer

My Dad saw the U-verse bundle and was mislead into signing up with one. He was told it was unlimited calls, but now after having so much dropped calls with U-verse voice, he asked me for help and I found out he was charge extra $50 this month b/c what he was told unlimited was actually 250 min only and now I got kick from one department to the other when trying to reverse to the traditional landline. For a communication company, it was terrible when everytime I call (about 20 times so far) I got to retell the whole story since no one seems to document this even after they've told me it's done. Below is the journey for all the calls and unfulfilled promises from AT&T customer reps and some suggestion to help other elder customers in the future.

Feel like AT&T misled elderly customers into high internet/phone package. Below is journey trying to fix this


To Whom It May Concern:

This is Ly T. I’m writing on the behalf of my parents,  to notify and hope that you’ll be able to make changes in the future to help other customers. Because I believe that not everyone will have the time and patience I have to keep calling your representatives for a simple switch that take almost a month and several phone calls and up until now when I’m writing this letter, are still not being taken care off.


My dad, after hearing the advertisement on TV has called and signed up for U-verse high speed internet and U-verse voice, with the understanding that he’ll be charge $44.95 for both internet and unlimited phone service . After signing up, we have a lot of problem with the phone because every time the internet was down, the phone was down and we missed a lot of important phone calls. My parents are old and they have been stressing out over this so I decided to help them out by calling to request a switch from U-verse voice into the traditional landline. Little that I know this is a huge project that require hours on the phone and frustration due to different agents promising that it was complete and yet nothing was done. Every time I called in I got to retell the whole story and someone will document it, promised it will be done then nothing was done. Below is the journey of all theses calls:


-Beginning of October (probably 10/7/13), the internet was down so I called in, Paula was able to help me restart and give the number to call in the morning for switching back to the traditional land line

-Next day 10/8/13, my parents called into talk with Trang, Bao, Chi, Lam on the help line 1800-300-5315 and was promise that everything was being taken care of and a technician will be sent out to fix the phone line.

Nothing happen so on

-10/18/13 I called into the help line and ask to speak with an English speaking representatives, after several transferring, I talked to Dennis (?) and was informed that my parent account was “incomplete” and done incorrectly so he’ll have to fix that. After 1 hr and 10 min on the phone, everything sounds like it was taken care of. He gave me a reference/case # and set up the date 10/28/13 for the technician to come out and fix the phone line. Unfortunately my dad lost the paper so I can’t provide you with the exact detail.

-10/28/13, no one call nor show up so I called in again. I talked to Mary Lu who informed me that there are no record of any repairmen scheduled today 10/28/13. In addition, I found down that our bill is actually about $137 this month. Got transfer to Arthesa who apologized and set up a technician to come out between 4-8pm to fix our problem. She then called back and inform me that it was not the U-verse department but the landline department who’s handling this so she will connect me. I’ve asked for the address/phone # of where to send in my complaints, but she doesn’t have it so she asked to call me back. Upon her call back, she informs me that the process of complaint is that she will collect the data, escalate the case and someone will contact me. She then transfer me to the landline department, and I was hang up right after. I called back, ended up having to tell another rep, George, the whole story again, before able to connect back to Arthesa and she gave me the landline # 1800-300-5315 in case I was hang up again and proceed to transfer me again. After 10 min wait, as expected, I was hang up so called up the # that I was provided. I called that # and it was in Vietnamese. Linh said she can help me and since nothing was set up, she can’t find any record except another “incomplete” case. She proceeds to do set up the changes after I have to tell her the whole story again.


She told me that since my dad order the U-verse on 9/18/13, it was over a month and now canceling this will cost him the penalty of $180 or something to that amount. She also explains to me that the U-verse voice is only 250 min, not unlimited as he was mislead so that’s why our bill is about $50 over what we expected. So now our option is either sign up with a new internet service for $36/month for 12 months or stay month to month at $51/month. And because of all the problems we’ve had, she will give this case to the supervisor who will contact me tomorrow 10/29/13.


I’ll send you the update once this clear up and hopefully I’ve signed up with another internet/phone service. Below are my recommendations after almost 3 weeks of requesting the switch I’ve indicated above.

1)    When advertising for the new service, please be clear and don’t mislead the customer. We’re current on a phone plan with you under my mom’s name, which usually cost around $30 per month for unlimited call, nationally. Now with U-verse we pay about $75 per month with current calls, if we call more in the upcoming months, we’d pay more. This is unacceptable because when I told my parents they felt like they have been cheated into a deal that cost them so much more with less service and a lot of problem

2)    Please have the reps keep a running log of the problems on the same account so that the next time the customer calls in he/she doesn’t need to waste time to tell the same problems ten times over and the reps to do all the paperwork over again. I’ve spent about 4-5 hrs altogether all on these phone calls

3)    Give the customer a reference # for each time they call in so the next call will be faster.

4)    Give your rep the complete # of all the important departments. Every time I asked for another department, no one seems to know because they only have the extension and they try to connect me but I kept get disconnected.

5)    Some of your reps are quite rude, one of the call the connect was bad so the rep got annoyed when I asked to repeat the questions.


We’ve been with AT&T for a long time but with all these problems, we’re looking for other providers. It’s a real hassle but I guess will have to take care of this. I only hope that you’ll make changes so that other customers, specially elderly customers won’t be take advantage of and can enjoy the service with your company.


Message 1 of 11
Former Employee

Re: Suggestion to stop mislead and overcharge elderly customer

Hello, minhlytran!


I'm so sorry to hear about your recent experiences and confusion with your U-verse package. If you don't mind, please go ahead and send us a private message by clicking here so we can get this sorted out as quickly as possible.


In your message, please provide your name, phone number, email address, and the best time to reach you. You can expect a response within two business days, so keep an eye on the little blue envelope icon in the top right corner of your screen.


In the meantime, feel free to message me with any other questions or concerns! We also value your feedback about our ads and look forward to sharing your thoughts with the correct team.





Message 2 of 11

Re: Suggestion to stop mislead and overcharge elderly customer

Hi Mariana,

Thank you for your reply. My whole family is very stressed out over this whole process. My parents are old and have a lot of health problem. This whole ordeal has been raising their blood pressure out of control and now they're anxious on how to pay for all these charges. So below are the things that I really need help with. Someone promise to call me today so I hope he will. Everytime I call, I have to make sure I have at least 2 hrs free to tell my story and being transferred back and forth, disconnect and then wait for the reps to "process" the whole request over. By the way, last night someone name Aida (?) call my dad around 7pm and tell him that the appointment has been pushed back to 11/1/13, since Linh, the last rep I talked to said nothing was scheduled so far (despite the 1 hr I spent on 10/18/13 to schedule for yesterday appointment), this is quite puzzling. 

1) Revert the u-verse phone back to the tradional landline as soon as possible.

2) Since we decide to leave AT&T after all this is settle, I'm told we'll be charged the $180 for early termination, (but if you check your record, we've called since 10/8, still within the time to cancel without penalty) please help adjust this penalty. We've spent a lot of time calling and if you've responded back then, all these won't happen

3) Please don't call into the number on the U-verse account anymore since we've been charged a lot by you, so we don't dare to use that phone anymore, please call my cell phone instead. I've provided that for Linh yesterday and many oher rep as well. Since this is a public forum, I don't want my cell phone on here.

4) Keep my internet as month to month for now so once it settles, I can switch to another provider.


Thank you for your help.

Ly Tran

Message 3 of 11


I've been contacted AT&T about this whole U-verse over charge and trying to revert back to our previous plan. However, our request has been "processed" since 10/8 till now. It makes my parents, who are elderly, feel like they have been scammed into this expensive plan and now trapped in it since they can't get out. It's pretty sad. Will try to call AT&T help desk now since I've been waiting all morning for the call from the supervisor named Toan, who Linh, the rep told me yesterday will contact me "first thing in the morning".


Message 4 of 11

Re: Trapped!!!

Just called, the supervisor name is Tuan, not Toan.
Message 5 of 11
Former Employee

Re: Suggestion to stop mislead and overcharge elderly customer

Hello again!


Have you had a chance to send us a private message by clicking on the link in my original response? If not, I encourage you to do so. This is not the same customer care team that you have spoken to over the phone. This is a dedicated team that only handles escalations on the forums. 


Let me know if you have any questions!





Message 6 of 11

Re: Suggestion to stop mislead and overcharge elderly customer

I did, nothing happen, but a congratulation message that I've promoted to "tutor". 

Ly Tran

Message 7 of 11
Former Employee

Re: Suggestion to stop mislead and overcharge elderly customer

The congratulatory message is actually a result of your posts. It is simply a rank that you have achieved. As for the response, it may take up to two business days to receive a response. At the latest, you should receive a response by Thursday.


Let me know if you have any additional questions or concerns!



Message 8 of 11

Re: Suggestion to stop mislead and overcharge elderly customer

Do you have a number where I can call in regarding the switch back to the landline? The supervisor Tuan has not called back and I think he'll leave at 4pm do I would like to have that settle today before I have to go back to work tomorrow. Thx

Message 9 of 11
Community Manager

Re: Suggestion to stop mislead and overcharge elderly customer

Hello minhlytran,


I reviewed your case and see that your issue was escalated to the Office of the President, they're very good and you should be hearing from them within 1-2 business days.


Thank you,


Rethink Possible

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Message 10 of 11

Re: Suggestion to stop mislead and overcharge elderly customer

Thank you. my problem is that I've received so many escalation promises ( this is probably the 5th one). Yet none was fulfilled so it's getting hard to trust any of your promises anymore. Nonetheless, thank you for reviewing my case.

Message 11 of 11
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