Birch Communications FCC lawsuit settlement requires them to pay $6.1 million dollars for cramming. It’s made up of a $4.2 million dollar penalty to the FCC and refund $1.9 million to consumers who filed complaints about unauthorized carrier changes or unauthorized charges within the past two years and adopt a compliance plan” says author Sean Buckley of Fierce Telecom, Jan 3, 2017. This is not the first FCC lawsuit settlement that was based on cramming.
Also, Buckley writes “The FCC said the settlement with Birch Communications resolves an Enforcement Bureau investigation into whether the company engaged in deceptive and abusive marketing practices. Specifically, the investigation focused on whether Birch Communications “slammed” consumers by switching their preferred phone carriers without authorization. “Crammed” unauthorized charges on its customers’ bills, and engaged in deceptive marketing. Practices like “cramming” and “slamming” result in telephone consumers paying for unauthorized services. And expending significant time and effort to seek to reverse charges and services they never requested.”
Other FCC Litigation and FCC Lawsuit Settlements
Buckley reports “Birch is hardly alone in having to pay fines for cramming and slamming.” Another FCC lawsuit settlement notes “Four phone companies had to pay the FCC $11.7 million in fines for apparently levying “mystery fees” on their customers.
At that time, a Senate Commerce study revealed that cramming costs consumers $2 billion a year”, says Buckley.
Buckley ads, “To combat the issue, the FCC issued a Notice of Proposed Rule Making on cramming in 2011.
Filing an FCC Complaint
The Federal Communications Commission FCC will handle any valid telecom billing issues or complaints from consumers. Go online to file a telecom billing complaint regarding a telecom billing or service issue. The FCC will serve your complaint to your provider. Your provider then has 30 days to send you a response to your complaint. The FCC recommends that first you try to resolve the issues prior to filing any complaints. Auditel recommends that you record each request and keep the date, and all contact information for each contact.
After filing a telecom complaint to the FCC , Auditel recommends keeping records of all contacts and information regarding your complaint while it is being processed by the FCC. You should receive an email from the FCC after filing your telecom complaint. The FCC will send a reply via email to let you know that your complaint is being processed. Please keep this email for your records. It can help when following up on your FCC complaint.
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