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Call Kurtis: I Thought We Canceled Our Alarm Service

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Eight-time Emmy Award winner Kurtis Ming is CBS13's consumer...
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A Stockton couple signed up for home alarm service, but say the system was never fully installed. The wife says she took time off of work and waited hours while ADT tried to install her system on two different days and the company still didn’t get everything done. She asked to cancel, then started getting monthly bills, and that’s when she called Kurtis.

Tracie Leong remembers the frustration of getting her ADT alarm system installed, “They said the installation would take two to three hours. He was here for like six-and-a-half hours.”

And after a second installation appointment earlier this year, Leong says ADT still wasn’t able to install all the equipment for the security system she ordered. She put $20 down for the installation, but after getting frustrated that they couldn’t get the everything installed, Leong says she got ADT to cancel their contract. But bills started coming, asking for $179 for the remaining installation charge and $43 in monthly fees.

“Bottom line, I want the contract canceled. I want my money back,” said Leong.

Now the company is sending her to collections and Leong says after a number of calls to ADT, the problem still isn’t fixed.

“They all seem to say it’s fine to cancel, just, nobody seems to know how to cancel,” said Leong.

In California, you have three days to cancel an alarm system contract. In Leong’s case, her second installation was five days after the first installation, when her husband signed the contract.

McGeorge School of Law Professor Brian Slocum says there are two questions here: is it okay to break the contract after two installation attempts? And if ADT agreed to let her out verbally, can she prove it?

“It might be an issue of credibility but the customer has kept detailed records, which I think is really important,” said Slocum.

Leong says ADT now claims they have no record of her asking to cancel. We asked ADT why didn’t they install all the equipment after two attempts? They told us:

“We normally get it right the first time when servicing our six million customers, but sometimes we have to make additional visits to resolve issues. In this case, the customers were unable to let us finish the work and they went with another provider after signing our contract. As a token of goodwill, we are reducing the amount of their contract termination charge.”

ADT is asking Leong to pay 50% of the cost of the contract. She won’t agree to it and is weighing her options.

“I would never recommend them. And if anybody asks me, I would tell this horror story until like the day I die,” said Leong.

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