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Call Kurtis: What Do I Do When My Phone Company Doesn’t Listen?

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Kurtis Ming Kurtis Ming
Eight-time Emmy Award winner Kurtis Ming is CBS13's consumer...
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An 81-year old Sacramento man says each month, AT&T double-charges him. When they wouldn’t stop, he called Kurtis.

It’s $38 extra each month. But he’s not just one of these people who pays the amount listed on his bill when he doesn’t owe it. Bill Anderson is tired of calling AT&T every month.

“I’ve gotten so, I just hate to go through that phone tree,” says Bill.

The retired college administrator went fancy three years ago, upgrading from good old-fashioned AT&T phone service to AT&T U-Verse. But he didn’t like the voice quality of U-Verse, so he switched back in June.

“That day I spent two and a half hours on the phone trying to get the service switched,” says Bill.

The next month, Bill noticed he got charged for his old service and the new service. When he complained, they took it off.

“The next bill came, still on there, so I called them again went through the whole rigamarole again,” says Bill.

It happened four months straight.

“I was getting ready to call them up, I said fooey, I’m not going to call them up a fourth time, I think I’ll call Kurtis,” says Bill.

So who can you complain to when your phone company doesn’t listen? Try the California Public Utilities Commission in San Francisco or the Federal Communications Commission in Washington, D.C.

We contacted AT&T about Bill’s case. They didn’t explain what went wrong here. But in an email, they tell us: “Occasionally unfortunate issues do occur. … In this situation, the account was credited, a courtesy discount was provided for future services.”

Bill sure is glad he’s back to retirement, without monthly calls to AT&T.

“Thank you, thank you, thank you. I’m glad somebody could get something done with AT&T,” says Bill.

The California Public Utilities Commission tells us you should hear back from them within two weeks after filing a complaint. The FCC tells us when they get a phone company complaint, they give the company 30 days to respond to the FCC and the consumer.

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