Sunday, October 11, 2009

Canceling my Phone (or “Lingo is Evil”)

I had figured out a way to get cheaper phone service so I needed to cancel my current phone service. The problem is that the billing department wouldn’t answer their phones and tech support wouldn’t cancel my account. I ended up canceling the credit card they were charging monthly as the only way to cancel the account after calling many times and sending cancel letters. Of course this made them send back a letter saying if I didn’t pay for the account they would report me to the phone regulatory board (NTDE) So instead I filed complaints with the BBB (better business bureau), FTC (Federal Trade Commission), and NTDE. I actually got a response back from the CEO of the NTDE saying they would look into it. With no way to end up in collections when trying to cancel Lingo, I would warn anyone to not sign up with them and I rate them as one of the worst companies because of this (their service while we had them was not the best either.)
Attached is the letter that I sent to everyone, that got such a response:

This is a complaint about one of your member companies using the names
"Primus Telecommunications" and "Lingo". The company has made it
impossible to cancel an account with them. These are bad business
practices that tarnish your groups name and create bad data (from dead
accounts unable to cancel), which leads to false reports in your
database, making its value decrease.
There is no way to cancel the account through their phone system.
Calling into tech support, I was able to get a person in under 5
minutes; but calling into customer service states that to many people
are waiting and to leave a message. Messages (contact info and acct
number) left over 3 months ago still have not been answered. Using
email support returns an email that canceling over email is not
allowed and gives a secret phone tree selection for customer service.
Using the hidden phone tree menu choice I am on hold for 20 minutes
then a message to call back during business hours, no matter what time
of day I called.
I have had to resort to canceling the card they are charging just to
cancel the account and have been forced to report them to the Better
Business Bureau (ID# 8069789) and Federal Trade Commission (ref#
24883103).

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