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Talktalk stonewalls attempts to claim refund

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Hi all

 

It's been a while since I had a consumer issue, but I'm back and I'm stressed!

 

I was lured by the cheap tariffs and agreed over the phone to take out a contract with them. (Phone & Broadband)

They asked for a new line fee of £69.99 which I paid using my visa debit card. (This was 14th Sept 2010)

 

Over the next few days I spoke to friends and asked if they had any experience of TT and was horrified at the stories they told me.

 

4 days after I initially made the verbal agreement, I called them back and cancelled the contract. (This was 18th Sept 2010)

TT asked why and I told them that they had a bad reputation for broadband issues (I'm a mature student and broadband is vital to me)

They took it well and asked me to call back in 7 days as the £69.99 was held in limbo and it needed to be credited to TT before they could refund it to me.

 

I gave them a little extra time and called back 14 days later (This was 2nd Oct 2010). TT said they couldn't refund that day as the system upgrades being done prevented refunds being made. They asked me to call back on the following monday.

 

I called back on the monday and was told to ring back in 7 days! (This was 4th Oct 2010)

 

I called back again (15th Oct 2010) and was informed that a refund would go into my bank account within 5 days.

 

I kept an eye on my bank account, no payment arrived.

 

I called back today (27th Oct 2010) and spent the best part of 2 hours either on hold or redialling following cut off from an India call centre. I also spoke to Cape Town who were more polite but equally clueless. The british call centres are equally clueless and resorted to just sending me through to depts that couldn't deal with refunds.

I had been passed around 7 different depts and 3 different continents.

 

I finally spoke to someone who admitted they had no idea how to put me through to the dept that does refunds, he actually read out the depts he could transfer me to and none of them were relevant.

 

He then suggested that I ring Ofcom! He gave me the number and was very helpful and sympathetic.

 

I spoke to Ofcom who took all the above info, they say I have to write to TT and give them 8 weeks to respond. They also mentioned Otelo (ombudsmen) and the next steps to take if the complaint letter isn't satisfied reasonably.

 

My questions to Caggers are;

 

1) Can I expect reimbursement for the phone charge to the various 0870 numbers TT gave me to ring?

 

I'm not talking minutes on the phone to them, I'm talking hours! They keep people on hold as long as possible!

 

 

2) Can I charge them a reasonable interest for withholding my money with no explanation?

 

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Hi girl friday

 

The first think you could do is to get your £69.99 back, you could Chargeback - http://www.which.co.uk/consumer-rights/sale-of-goods/your-rights-when-paying-by-credit-card/chargeback-on-credit-and-visa-debit-cards/

 

With regards to compensation, I see no reason why you can't bill them for your time and expense, explain everything thats gone on and say you want to be compensated.

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Hi Rebel11

 

I have just got off the phone with my bank who understood immediately the whole charge back thing.

They filled out the form and it has been sent through to the disputes dept. They then said that the money would be refunded to me but on a temporary basis!

This means that if they can't win the dispute they will take it back!

It also takes over 3 months for this process to happen.

 

The upshot of the convo with my bank was them advising me to carry on trying to get the cash back myself!

 

The dispute is now underway via my bank.

 

I don't think I have the energy or patience to pursue this again this week!

 

My bank also informed that my DD with TT was still active! I told them to close it...

Edited by girl friday

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Hi girl friday

 

One more thing it might be an idea to tell your tale of woe to Charles Dunstone CEO of Talktalk dunstonec@cpw.co.uk

Tell him of your experience. Do it when you are less stressed. Someone from his office will respond.

 

There really isn't anthing for your bank to win. Talktalk are very poor. I know I just moved from them.

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I just called them again! (I guess I'm a glutton for punishment?)

 

This time I used a customer service number I found out the web.

 

This time I got a call centre in Manilla (I feel like I've been on a journey round the world today!)

 

The person I spoke to was very nice and told me that a payment by cheque had been made on 22nd Oct.

I asked why and they said that my DD wasn't active! See post above.

 

Anyway, the cheque is meant to arrive within 28 days. As long as it arrives!

 

I must have been feeling lulled and chilled by the person I was talking to because I kept my cool and was very amicable. I asked if I could talk to a senior person about a goodwill gesture on TT's part in recognizance of my stress and wasted phone calls.

She transferred me through and I explained all that I've told you and even managed a joke with the guy! He filled out something as I spoke with him (The cynic in me thinks he was playing WOW at the time) and said he couldn't promise anything. He agreed I'd had bad service though...

I ended our chat saying that I didn't want to leave feeling so negatively about Talk Talk!

 

If and when I get progress, I will come back and update this thread!

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Update

 

The cheque arrived for £69.99.

 

Interestingly, the date on it was not the 22nd Oct 2010. It says 29/10/2010!

 

If I get any goodwill gesture from TT I will come back and update this thread.

 

Thanks everyone!

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Hi Girl Friday

 

Good Stuff,

 

If you han't E-mailed Mr Dunstone, it's well worth doing, it might help him improve Customer Service.

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Hi girl friday

 

One more thing it might be an idea to tell your tale of woe to Charles Dunstone CEO of Talktalk dunstonec@cpw.co.uk

Tell him of your experience. Do it when you are less stressed. Someone from his office will respond.

 

There really isn't anthing for your bank to win. Talktalk are very poor. I know I just moved from them.

 

I've had absolutly no problems with TalkTalk and have been with them for over 3 years. You will find there are good customer service and bad within every company.

 

girl friday, have you informed your bank not to procede with the chargeback? if you get a double refund you could find yourself getting billed again from TalkTalk


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