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Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged

Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged

Upfront I admit that:

I didn't read the paperwork close enough before I signed on the line so let this be a warning for anyone with warranty issues (and have a magnifying glass handy).



August, 2014 went into a local ATT dealer and bought one phone for my daughter and one for my son on payment plans along with the bill for wireless service.


After about 2 months my daughter's Samsung Galaxy 4 started to randomly turn off and on.

Sometime at the end of November or early December I took the phone back to the place I bought it and they said there was a problem-they called ATT and both agreed it was beyond repair and sent me a new phone.  I sent the defective one back and thought we were done with it.


Yesterday I got the old phone back with a letter stating, ..."Unfortunately, we are returning your phone due to the following condition:  Cracked, Damaged, Smashed, Chewed Plastic/Faceplate..." and ATT stated there would be a charge of $469.00 on my next bill.  This is in addition to the other Galaxy phone I'm paying for on a monthly basis.


I was on the phone for half the morning, getting nowhere (and I felt really bad for the first woman I spoke to from Kentucky-she was very nice) with anyone (I did speak with the first woman's manager). 


I bought my daughter a cover for the phone for her birthday in August and the face of the phone is in perfect condition.  It turns out that there is "damage" where the plug goes in to charge the phone.  After getting a magnifying glass out I could see some wear inside where the charging chord plugs in but that was all.


My issue:

1.  The ATT store I bought it did not find any damage when they originally called about getting me a replacement phone and did not say anything about any damage preventing repair or replacement due to something like this.  Neither did they mention anything about having to pay for it.

2.  As a common, untrained person, having no trouble with the phone charging how in the world would I know to look inside this space (and had I even thought to do that, how would I know that it was damaged when it has always worked fine) or that a $75 repair would be cause to be charged $500.  The rest of the phone doesn't have a scratch on it.  If the store didn't find it how would I be expected to???

3.  The phone was charging fine-the issue is with the internal electronics.  I have no problem with any "damage" that might be in the charging port.  Honor your warranty, fix that part that is the issue and send the otherwise "damaged" phone back to me and I'll send back the new phone both you and your agent decided to send me.

4.  The charging port is a $14.00 part on line-you can't replace that and fix the electronic issues (but it was working fine so it didn't need to be replaced anyway)?  If you can replace the electronic issues I'll pay for the charging port part.  If you can't fix the electronic issue then does it really matter whether the $14.00 charging port is "damaged" or not?


I have contacted Samsung and they're going to take a look at it to see if it is under warranty and if not they are going to have someone call me with an estimate to fix it-but they are not going to charge me almost $500 for a phone that stopped working 2-3 months after it was purchased. 


I've been with ATT almost since the dawn of the cell phone, have paid for a number of phones for a number of kids and currently have three lines.  I'd rather not go somewhere else but of course I think this is an insane policy no matter what paper I signed (what choice did I have-I don't sign it you don't warranty it-I already had the new phone-I'm over a barrel).  I have no problem with the phone charging despite the "damage" that is there-I just want you to have the integrity to stand behind the product you advertise and sell. 


I'll see what Samsung has to say in a few days.  At the least they will call me back and talk to me before charging me for a phone that was defective to begin with. 


I'm sure there is a very reasonable explanation for this policy but I'm fairly sure it's not one that keeps customers (but I'll admit, I'm a bit biased at this point).


Respectfully submitted.


[Subject edited for better exposure] 


Message 1 of 45

Re: Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged

My wife is saying that yesterday is the first time she was aware of the situation; we have email showing it was the first contact from Warranty that there was notification of issue, so I'm having her call back; it still has to be under the 10 day period if that was our first notification that something was wrong.

Message 16 of 45

Re: Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged

I have done quite a bit of research and found that this is very common and yes, it is a scam. We could have easily sent the phone back as we had insurance. We would have paid the $200.00 and that would have been that. They insisted we send it to the warrenty dept because it was under warrenty. I have no idea when the back cracked or how but, I am deeply suspicious after seeing this problem being discussed by loads of people.

Message 17 of 45

Re: Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged

Similiar thing here, S6 active wont power up, took it to an ATT store it was inspected deemed a warrenty item (phone is in perfect condition otherwise),  a replacement sent to me, I send the broken phone back them per thier instructions in thier prepaid box and a week later broken phone is back in my mailbox with a broken screen same problem (wont power up) its mine to keep, gee thanks! And 500 dollars added to my bill which they convienently pulled all at once this month in addition to my regular charges from my debit card info..Guess I dont eat this month, thanks ATT..500 dollars I need to pay bills and eat, great customer service (insert sarcasm) loyal customer for around a decade will be leaving you shortly.

Message 18 of 45

Re: Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged

Looks like a common scan. They burned us too. Phone looked fine at store. Was told to send in for warrenty replacement. Then after i got my replacment phone the phone came back with a cracked back. Now we are out 700 dollars. ATT has no customer service. We spend over 10 hour on phone with them trying to get something done. Even called Samsung theycouldn't help. We have been with ATT since the bag phone. Guess they got to big and don't care who they lose as customers. They turned my phones off till we paided for phone. Everyone we talked to couldn't belevie how they were treating us.  (even their store manger and samsung) The people in the warrany department were very rude and told us they would even try to help

Message 19 of 45

Re: Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged

If the phone looked fine then it was damaged in shipment which is not the responsibility of the carrier. Return shipping is in the hands of the end user. If it was damaged in transit and the box shows zero signs of mishandling then the device was not packaged properly.

*I am an AT&T employee, and the postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent AT&T's position, strategies or opinions.
Message 20 of 45

Re: Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged

Going through the same issue now.  Got an update on my Moto X2 an immediatly the phone starts having issues.  Took it in to ATT and they checked it over, did something and it was working.  Next week screen goes green and then black.  Took it back in, they checked it over and said it was under warranty and to send it in.  I called the warranty rep. She walked me through the process.  She had me take the sim card out to see if the water damage strip was pink/red.  I looked, and did not see any color to the sim or in the sim slot (the ATT store looked at this also).  Got the replacement phone and sent my phone in.  Received it back saying it had water damage with a red arrow pointing to the sim slot.  I used a magnifying glass and still can't see red/pink in the slot.  I did not drop my phone in the toilet, in the sink or dump water on it, and it is in a protective case. So how did it get water damage?   I took pictured of the phone just as a precaution prior to sending it in, but did not photo the sim slot.    ATT says they will charge me $425.  Can I still get reimbursed from my phone insurance for part of the charge?   If the ATT store had said it was damage and not a warranty issue, I would have used my insurance.    Oh, and the phone they sent me is not a new phone.  It is already having battery life issues.  If I have to pay $425, I want a new phone.    Have ATT and Direct TV.  If this is not resolved, probably will drop both of them.  Seems to me, that I should be able to sent the phone they sent me back and use my insurance.  This smells like a scam.

Message 21 of 45

Re: Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged

It's a scam. I ended up have to pay for 2 phones even though phone had
insurance on.
Message 22 of 45

Re: Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged

Your saying that the box that was sent by AT&T is bad. It's was returned in your box. What a ripoff
Message 23 of 45

Re: Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged

Even Samsung agrees we were ripped off
Message 24 of 45

Re: Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged

The same thing happened to my husband. It is ridiculous and has definitely cost them our business. We have 5 lines and I have been a customer with them since 2001.

I tell everyone that asks DO NOT GO TO AT&T!!!!!!

Message 25 of 45
ACE - Sage

Re: Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged


You can find the same complaints on other carrier forums.   If the phone was packed correctly in the same packaging as the replacement was shipped to you, it should arrive in good condition.  

If a package arrives and is damaged, photos are taken of package and phone.  If the package is fine but phone damaged, photos are taken of package and phone.  

These photos are included in the email notice that you are being charged for the phone.  

If the package was damaged in shipping, you are not held responsible.  But if packing is fine, and the phone is damaged, it's on you.





(The following is included after all posts to save typing) I don’t work for AT&T. My replies are based on experience and reading content available on the website. Our answers are honest, but not always appreciated. If you posted personal information, please edit and remove.
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*I am not an AT&T employee, and the views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 26 of 45

Re: Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged

How did you contact Samsung to get it fixed? I was wanting to exchange with AT&T and im afraid there might be moisture in my phone due to a shower steam and it was foggy in our area not too long ago... Im afraid that the LDI got triggered inside and that AT&T will be allowed to charge it. My phone has been glitching before these events though, such as the touchscreen not working. Theres been no physical damage whatsoever.
Message 27 of 45

Re: Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged

It's been awhile but I believe I just went to their website to find the number. They were quite helpful-hopefully will be the same for you.
Message 28 of 45

Re: Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged

As a follow up.  I worked with the manager at my local ATT store.  He agreed it was wrong that they charge me for the replacement phone. He was able to get the payment credited to our account and we went through the insurance.   Poor policy,but nice to know they can correct it

Message 29 of 45

Re: Warranty issue - phone returned as damaged

 Hi , we got the same problem ,My two line's got suspended because the claim the phone                      was not receive .Enough is Enough. Finally we found solution.Contact me by private email,thanks

Regards ,B

Message 30 of 45
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