Tuesday, January 27, 2009

DON’T WALK – SPRINT – IF YOU WANT OUT OF YOUR CELL PHONE CONTRACT

A fellow NACBA member has found out something very useful I would like to share with you.

If you want to get out of your cell phone contact with Sprint, you have a short opportunity to do so without paying an early termination fee (ETF).

The way it works is this – when a wireless carrier makes changes to the language in their “Terms of Service” agreement, you have a right to reject it and drop the carrier without an early termination fee. Sprint has just raised their internal administrative fees again - to 0.99¢ per month, from their original fee hike of 0.75¢ in December. The December fee hike opened a window until early January, and the second hike in January opened up a new window until January 31. As a result of this administrative fee increase, anyone who is currently under contract with Sprint can leave the carrier early without paying termination fees. There are only two catches to this deal:

First, you can only cancel the service without getting hammered with an Early Termination Fee if you do it by January 31, 2009 AND, second, VERY IMPORTANT, you need to call Sprint and ask specifically about the rate hike first.

In short, ask about the rate hike first, and then use the rate hike as your reason for canceling service. Make sure you follow Sprint’s instructions on how to cancel properly and follow up in writing to make sure they have done it.

Since it’s only a few days until the end of the month, you've got only a few days left before the window of opportunity closes.

Why the hike? Money problems. Sprint just cut 8,000 jobs, about 15% of its workforce, trying to reduce its costs by $1.2 billion, so they need that extra fifteen cents.

What if you already canceled and got hit with an ETF? Do not despair. Sprint just settled a class action regarding these. If you had a wireless contract with Sprint from July 1999 and December 2008 that contained a time based ETF fee clause and can prove that you were charged an ETF fee, you could get back up to $90. Even if you didn’t cancel, you could get a $35 settlement fee just because you kept the contract for fear of getting hit with an ETF. There are a lot of hoops to jump through, and there are some exceptions and reductions in payouts, but you can start by going to www.sprintetfsettlement.com and registering.

Of course, keep in mind that changing carriers can be like going from the frying pan into the fire and there is no guarantee the replacement carrier will be much better.

Also, I’ve read that since Palm will soon be debuting a new web-based operating system exclusively using Sprint (for a time), canceling now could open up an opportunity to re-sign with Sprint later on in exchange for a free or low cost Palm Pre device.

So, whatever you decide to do, don’t dawdle. Sprint.

1 comment:

Class Action Lawsuit for Authorized Dealers Against Sprint/Nextel said...

I am one of the most well-known wireless leaders in Northern California providing wireless solutions for corporate accounts. The difference between my company and everyone else is my exceptional vision and leadership especially on the B2B side. Without sacrificing quality, integrity, and customer service, my abilities have gained me the knowledge and expertise to win numerous awards including top seller award for Northern California from a variety of wireless carriers. Having said that, I was approached by Nextel in 2002 to become one of their B2B Authorized Representatives as a result of my success from previous years. With my exceeding success through the B2B channel, Nextel approached me to do a joint venture on launching new retail locations in the Northern California market since there was no strong retail presence. With knowledge, experience, and expertise I put together one of the most dynamic teams of highly motivated and well qualified communication consultants. In 2003, my ex-colleague and dear friend was invited to join in this new vision. I launched eight locations in Northern California and I was invited to launch new locations in Arizona, Colorado, and Minnesota. In 2005, when the merger with Sprint occurred, the new management team: Mark Sadighian, Paul Harris, and Dennis McSweeney no longer shared the vision that Nextel had with my company. At the same time I found out that my partner was embezzling money and started a new wireless company with another carrier. When I approached Mark Sadighian with my new found news, the advise that I received was to separate our partnership and for me to start a new company under a new name. I was granted an exclusive dealer contract with Sprint/Nextel and their service center. Two months into my new company, I submitted six new retail locations that were denied to me for expansion, but at the same time were handed to someone else. Sprint/Nextel set me up for failure, after I invested hundred of thousands of dollars into the new company. Sprint/Nextel decided at that point not to support me in my visions, ideas, and ventures. As a result, I am seeking other dealers that have had a similar experience as me for a class action lawsuit. Before I posted my story online, I requested the immediate assistance from the CEO of Sprint, Daniel Hesse. He never responded to any of my emails, and at this point left me with no choice, but to put together a class action lawsuit for Authorized Dealers. I will not stop until my losses are compensated. If you are interested in contacting me with any questions, concerns, or to assist me in participating in this class action lawsuit please email me at: sprintactionlawsuit@gmail.com or visit www.nextel.bz