Vonage, one of the nation’s largest providers of Internet-based phone service, will refund eligible customers and pay $3 million to the states to resolve concerns about its billing and cancellation policies.
Senior Counsel Paula Selis, an assistant attorney general who heads up the Consumer Protection High-Tech Unit in Washington state, said more than 400 Washington consumers have complained about Vonage’s services.
Selis said some consumers complained that their trial periods were shortened because they had to wait for equipment to arrive or for their old phone number to be moved to their new Vonage account. Others who responded to “free” trial services weren’t aware they would be charged an activation fee, shipping and handling, taxes and other fees. Some elderly consumers complained they weren’t aware they needed high-speed Internet service in order to use Vonage.
Consumers who filed certain unresolved complaints about Vonage with the Attorney General’s Office since January 2004 are eligible for a refund. Qualifying consumers who file new complaints by March 16, 2010, will also receive refunds. Complaints See our news release for more info.