Earthlink Users BEWARE!

We had Earthlink for 2 years when we lived in Los Angeles, I canceled service in November 2005 when I found that we needed to use Comcast for internet here. In March 2006 I recieved a bill that we owed $123, I told them I had canceled our service and they said they didn’t have a record of that. Giving the benefit of the doubt that maybe I had overlooked that in all the craziness of the move paid them with my debit card and cancelled the service. I just took a close look at my bank statement yesterday and saw a chage for $39.95 from Earthlink using the debit card. They had attached my debit card to an account that was closed and have been charging me for 3 1/2 years!

I called Earthlink and they said they had no record of cancelling service and they could not return my money unless I had a confirmation number. Infuriated I hung up thinking I had written the number in a notebook I couldn’t find. Later I went and checked our files, pulled out the folder for Earthlink and found that I had written the confimation number on the bill that had come in 2006 and I also saw a second confirmation number on notes from when we had moved in 2005.

I called Earthlink back, which of course took 20 minutes on hold with a direct line to India. I gave them the confirmation number from 2006 and then 2005 and of course neither one were in their system! I would need to fax my documents to some Earthlink phone number. Since it was my handwritten notes, I couldn’t imagine they would give that any validity it seemed like just another tactic to stall things. When I talked to the supervisor he told me that I needed to have taken action with in 30 days of cancellation to get my money back!

So what good is a confirmation number when the company does not honor it? They have literally been stealing money for 3 1/2 years by attaching a card number to an account on the day that I had cancelled service the second time. My only guarantee of stopping them now is to change my card number.

19 Responses to “Earthlink Users BEWARE!”

  1. Jo says:

    Wow – I’m pissed off for you! There are companies that get away with this “stuff” all the time. My heart goes out for you.

  2. Oh, holy cow. And I’m an earthlink subscriber.. this is scary as heck, Judy. I am so sorry they’re giving you such a hard time, too… how much money have they stolen from you since 2005? I can’t even imagine.

  3. I just totaled it up as I filed a complaint with the better Business bureau, it is $1,757.80.

  4. Gerrie says:

    contact the consumer services reporter at a local tv station. This needs to be investigated. I am sure you are not alone. This is fraud!!! Go get ’em, Judy

  5. Penny says:

    Hi Judy: I’m in your line up of being P’d/O as well. Where is the “customer is right policy”. My first gut reaction would be to go to the bank and put a stop payment on the monthly “Pre-authorized Cheque”(PAC) so that they cannot process further payments. We can do that in Canada and I would hope you can do that in the States as well. Beat them to the next gouge from your bank account, after all it is yours not their’s to take advantage. Thanks for sharing your dilemma, this is a classic example of trusting our service providers. Perhaps we should nix the PAC’s and go back to writing a cheque either monthly or quarterly. Good Luck!

  6. Dotti says:

    Judy, I once had a company attach my payments to my debit card. When I stopped with them, I also went down to my local bank and had the bank stop that automatic payment. If this doesn’t work the same way then you will have to change your debit card. Most banks also now issue a temporary debit card until the permanent one arrives so you don’t have to go without one! Good Luck!

  7. I called the bank this morning hoping I could put a stop on Earthlink but they said I would need to change my debit card to stop them. I will do this if I have to, but I would rather not resort to that.

  8. Dolores says:

    Hmmm. Time to change banks too?

  9. Terry says:

    Judy, You are not the only one that this is/has happened to. See the complaints here:

    At the bottom of this page there is a link to a law firm who is apparently investigating this. Might be worth contacting them. It IS fraud.

  10. Stacy says:

    It totally sucks that companies can pull this crap & get away with it. They know they can. How many of us have the ability to sit on hold what totals to be hours only to get one person, then some other person and you KNOW when you ask for a supervisor you basically get thing 2 after all ready talking to thing 1 only to have it drag on for many more months. Most give up, which is what they figure you’ll do. So sorry this is happening to you. Note: even when they give you their name & “ID” number, even when they give you information that later turns out to be false (and costs you money) there is NO accountability. It’s appalling.

  11. Beena says:

    I went through problems with them about 5 years ago. I found I was unable to cancel my service with them, no matter how I tried to contact them. Finally, I had to bring it to the attention of my credit card company that I wanted it removed from my bill, and told them about the problems I was having trying to cancel. They managed to get through to earthlink (where I couldn’t), and that ended that. But I couldn’t believe how impossible they made it to cancel, and that it took a credit card company to get them to back off.

  12. Stephanie says:

    That is just beyond the pale. Thanks for the heads up!!!

  13. jen says:

    Try this place. There probably some good info lurking in their archives, or you could tell them your story. A lot of times, companies are shamed into doing the right thing because of that site.

    Good luck getting it resolved.

  14. Karoda says:

    Judy, I hope you receive justice in this situation.

  15. I agree with Gerrie, find a local tv station that has a “Problem Solvers” sort of crew. That’s the name of our local helpers.

  16. giddy up says:

    Another thing to do is file a complaint to your State’s Atty. General’s office… also find an address or email address to write the CEO of Earthlink to escalate the issue… they should of put in an escalation to resolve your issue. They should have some type of retention department that should know how to do the process, retention ususally handles requests to disconnect accounts.

  17. Barb says:

    Yes, on the idea of contacting your state’s attorney general’s office. I was on the phone with Sears for 3 months, often for hours at a time, getting many promises of a credit for something I returned, and only when my state’s attorney general’s office stepped in did I get a resolution.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Your problem just makes my stomach churn. I hate feeling helpless in such situations. I hope you get resolution. (and maybe some revenge!)

  19. Donna says:

    How dare them! Perhaps you can take them to small claims court?

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