This is a letter I sent to the Executive Offices of Sprint yesterday. My complaint was assigned a case number and one unapologetic case worker. I’ll share her response to the letter after I post it for you to read:
Dear (won’t say her name),
This email is regarding a serious complaint and subsequent message left to your office on the evening of May 21, 2019. Unfortunately, my message was not as coherent as I would have liked, and so this note will serve as an explanation for my call.
First of all, I would like to thank you for taking the time to consider my complaint. I appreciate the fact that the Executive Offices assigned me a case number and that you are willing to hear me out.
Last evening, after I called and left a message with your office, I dialed Sprint customer service and stayed on the line with a representative for over an hour trying to sort out the issue. At last, I thought it was resolved, but alas it has not been. Let me describe to you the nature of my complaint.
After being a loyal Sprint customer for nearly 14 years and paying your company over $30,000 in services during that time, I moved states wherein our new home does not have strong Sprint service. And so, on September 8, 2018 we terminated our Sprint phones and switched to another company. Since we did not have a contract, our plan ended when I terminated services on September 8th, and on September 24th I paid my final bill of approximately $276.
I called customer service during that time to verify that indeed my account was paid in full. I was assured that both August’s and September’s payment had been received and that I was in the clear. All good.
But then, there was a problem with one of our phones ending in 7876, my mother-in-law’s phone, which has become the source of our conflict today. My mother-in-law was on our family plan. She had a lease on her phone and an 18 month contract. During this time, customer service informed us that she had the option to pay her phone off for approximately $194 and at that time she could continue on her own. She could remain with Sprint and negotiate a price for a solo plan.
This is when things got dicey because after my mother-in-law paid the $194, in the month of October 2018, my credit card was charged approximately $255 by Sprint. I called customer service and asked why we were charged. It was a nightmare. Each person would pass me off to another, and it seemed that nobody had an explanation for the charge. The customer service representatives were so incompetent that my head was spinning.
Finally, I became very exasperated and told them that I was NOT going to pay the charge and disputed it with my credit card company.
Now, when my mother-in-law wanted to negotiate a solo plan with a Sprint customer rep at her local store, her hands were tied, so-to-speak, because of the pending $255 charge that had now grown to approximately $269.
After haggling with customer service for months, I relented and on December 24, 2018 I paid the $269 with my credit card. On that day, the customer service rep tried to explain the charge, stating that it was a termination fee for my mother-in-law leaving our plan and starting her own solo plan with Sprint. I was so frustrated, I remember thinking, “Ok, whatever,” and just paid. I wanted it to be over with. At that time, my mother-in-law paid me back the $269 since the dispute was surrounding her phone. I thought that was the end. It was not.
Presently, let’s fast-forward to yesterday wherein I received a phone call from a Sprint customer service representative. The rep describes how my mother-in-law has been complaining about the fact that she had to pay a $269 termination fee. My first thought is, “Really? Now? 6 months later?” The rep continues to inquire. Do I have anything to add or questions about this matter? Honestly, I had a difficult time understanding what the purpose of this call was. It was out-of-the-blue and very confusing.
That is until 5 minutes later when my mother-in-law calls and accuses me of not paying my Sprint bill. She relays how a customer service rep just told her that the $269 was not for her phone, but because I did not pay my bills.
All I can do is think, “What kind of nightmare is this?” My mother-in-law has emotional issues. This sort of thing sets her off. Sprint customer service triggered a family dispute by giving, once again, misinformation.
I was furious. Last night I called your executive offices. After I left that rambling message (I apologize for that), I called Sprint customer service. I was on the phone for over an hour with the representative, and after going month-by-month starting in August of 2018 before I ended my service with Sprint, to reiterate, which was on September 8th, she apologized and said that yes, all of my bills were paid in full and the charge in October 2018 for approximately $255, which grew to $269 for a reason unbeknownst to me, was indeed for my mother-in-law’s lease.
I was exhausted, but I dialed my mother-in-law and explained what Sprint customer service said. I did pay my Sprint bill in full. The customer service rep that my mother-in-law had spoken with had been mistaken.
But this is not the end. This morning, May 22, 2019, my mother-in-law called Sprint customer service again to complain. Once again, the customer service rep told my mother-in-law that the charge of $269 was because I didn’t pay my August 1-31, 2018 Sprint bill. What? Just last night the customer service rep said that the charge was for my mother-in-law’s lease phone. The explanations have been inconsistent. The misinformation had been rampant. The unprofessionalism has been mind-blowing.
Whether or not the disputed charge of $269 was for an unpaid bill (which I have been told by customer service many, many times that it is not), or if the charge was for the lease on my mother-in-law’s phone (though customer service has assured her over and over that it is not), the whole fact of the matter is that this is completely ridiculous.
Your customer service needs to be revamped. They need further training. They need to give out consistent information. Managerial assistance, by means of research and a clear answer to the issue, should have occurred way before a situation like ours became so out-of-hand.
I am no longer with Sprint, but during the nearly 14 years I was always on time with my payments. I was a good customer. Honestly, I don’t deserve to have been so mishandled by your customer service team. This had been so difficult. I feel physically sick over it.
The purpose of this letter is to inform Sprint Executive Offices of the gross mishandling and misinformation given by your customer service team. This is a formal complaint and explanation of the events surrounding this ongoing dispute.
And so, within one business day (I give them credit for the speedy response), the case worker called me back. Most of the conversation was her explaining why Sprint customer service was confused, why they were giving two different family members misinformation. Just a bunch of excuses instead of apologies, in my opinion. She verified that yes, the final charge of $269 was for my mother-in-law’s phone. It included the disputed charge of $255, plus a late fee. Did she offer to waive or reimburse us the small late fee, or any compensation at all for how poorly they mishandled us? NO. She says she will put this new information in the case notes for the next customer service rep to see. BTW: I’ve heard that before by a number of other customer care reps.
The case worker’s last line to me, and in a very drool, unapologetic tone was, “Thank you for being a loyal customer,” or some other such nonsense that didn’t make me feel much closure. I do have to say one thing: At least my mother-in-law now knows that the charge was not because of my delinquent bill paying, but associated with her phone. At least she’ll know this until the next time she dials Sprint customer service wherein she will be told another series of fractured facts and misinformation causing more family discord.