A Tale Of Two Companies

This is the tale of two companies. The names have been changed to protect the guilty. Other than that, this is a true tale that took place today.

Last evening, for some reason I decided to go on-line to see if a transaction had gone through on a secondary checking account that I rarely use. I knew there was not much money in the account but I also knew that there were sufficient funds to cover the transaction. At least, there was supposed to be.

You can imagine my horror when I saw a transaction by "Company F", an unauthorized transaction for that matter, which had gone through earlier that day thus causing my account to be... overdrawn. I quickly checked my account with Company F. Apparently it was for a subscription renewal but I had received no notification that the renewal date was coming up and in fact, there was no indication anywhere in my account as to when my subscription began or ended. 

I attempted to contact Company F but alas their office was closed. Further more, they were on the West Coast and would not be opened again until 11:00 in the morning according to my time zone. 

The first thing I did this morning was call the credit union. Since I have a good history with them, they graciously informed me that if Company F reversed the charges, they would remove the overdraft fee. Whew!

I called Company F later that morning confident that all would be well. It wasn't. They could certainly cancel my subscription but the cancellation would not go into effect until 1/1/20. That is not a typo. The cancellation would not be effective until next year. What?

I challenged Company F by saying that they had failed to provide me with a notice of renewal. Now my research that morning taught me that most states do not have such a law on their books, though many are considering it. However, Company F was located in a state that requires it. Oops!

That's when Company F changed tactics. They had called me. Yes. It was right here in their notes. They had left a message for me on December 12th. If I did not get the message they left, it was not their fault and perhaps I should talk to a family member? There was triumph in their voice until I mentioned that my VoiP provider kept a record of all incoming and outcoming calls. I had just logged into my account and let's see, I had it written down right here. They had called me and left a message for me on December 12th. Hmm... I had no incoming calls on December 12th. I checked the week before and the week after in case they had the wrong date. Hmm... all of the incoming calls were local and they were um... two time zones away from me?

"Wait, it wasn't your home phone number we called. It was your cell phone. Yeah, it was your cell phone."

Okay. It was my cell phone. Well, I could easily check that as they called on the 12th and my new billing cycle didn't begin until the 19th. I smiled and sweetly asked, "What date does your record show again? The 12th?"

"Yes!"

"Hmm... I have no incoming calls on that date. It also looks like I only got local calls in December as well. Hmm...I could send you copies of these phone records if you would like so you can see for yourself."

Company F snapped back that there was no need to do that but they were still adamant about not reversing the charges, insisting that they had indeed called and left a message. There was no voicemail on my cell phone, deleted messages are kept for 30 days, the phone company had no record of a phone call and yet Company F still insisted I had been called and was therefore not entitled to a refund. Hmm...

Company F changed tactics once again. I was not entitled to a refund because I had used the service since it renewed. No I hadn't. I had already checked my account and the last time I had used the service was prior to Christmas and therefore was before the subscription had renewed. If I was wrong, could they please provide the proof? Oops!

Finally Company F budged. It was a small budge but it was a budge. They would give me a 50% refund and cancel the service immediately. 

I probably should have dug in my heels and sunk in my teeth but I was sick and tired of the whole situation. I was tired of the lies and I simply wanted to be done with Company F. I agreed provided they sent me a confirmation letter which I received moments later. It wasn't the outcome I had hoped for but at least I would no longer have to do business with Company F.

Later that day I had to make a call to Company A. Shortly before Christmas a shipment from Company A had apparently been delivered to a wrong address and was now lost. When Company A learned of this they immediately said they would be issuing me a refund since one of the items was not in stock. If I cared to subsitute the item, I would have to place a new order but they would do their best to have it to me the next day. I placed a new order and was charged accordingly. On the day Shipment #2 arrived (December 23rd), I placed the unopened box in my dining room. I had company at the moment and so I would open it later. 

Several hours later, the doorbell rang. Someone was standing on my doorstep with Shipment #1. It had been delivered to the wrong address and they graciously delivered it to my door. I quickly contacted Company A, told them what had happened and since Shipment #1 had one of the items that I really wanted rather than a substitute, I would return Shipment #2. That was fine. They would adjust the charges for both shipments accordingly.

Today I learned that while the charges for Shipment #2 had been refunded, I still had not been charged for Shipment #1. Oops!

I called Company A and pointed out their error. I owed them money. Do you know what Company A did? They thanked me for calling but... I had been inconvenienced. My shipment had been lost. I had to call them to report it. I had to place a new order. An item in the original order was no longer in stock. I had to pay-out before I received my refund. My order had been in danger of not being received in time through no fault of my own. Then because I eventually received both shipments I had to go through the trouble of waiting for UPS to pick up Shipment #2. I could have never reported that the lost shipment had been found, I could have kept both shipments but I did not. Then when I discovered that I had items I had not paid for, I reported it.

"Thank you for bringing this to our attention but we are not going to charge you for the items." 

This is the Tale Of Two Companies. Two companies had the same customer but only one of them will continue to do business with her. Is it Company F or Company A? What we say and do really does matter in more ways than we may think.

John Knox @watchmanjohn ·

Wow that was a marathon blog I felt your frustration and irritation. Good on you for hanging in there

Beth M @blest ·

Alas, unfortunately I have dealt with both Company A and Company F.

Deepa N @deepaanne ·

Thanks for sharing.