FLORIDA, 31 STATES ANNOUNCE SETTLEMENT WITH VONAGE OVER CANCELLATION ISSUES
TALLAHASSEE, FL – Attorney General Bill McCollum today announced that Florida and 31 states have reached a $3 million settlement with Vonage, one of the nation’s largest providers of a service known as “Voice over Internet Protocol,” an internet-based phone service. The settlement requires Vonage to make significant changes to its marketing practices, honor consumer cancellation requests, and provide refunds to eligible consumers.
According to a multi-state investigation, the company at one time allegedly paid incentives to customer service representatives for retaining customers in lieu of cancellation. As a result, customers reported that cancellation was extremely difficult and sometimes impossible. Today’s agreement puts strict limitations on this practice and requires recording and verification of these telephone calls.
The settlement also addresses a number of other marketing practices which have led to consumer confusion about the cost associated with Vonage equipment and service. Specifically, Vonage will revise its disclosures regarding the offer of “free” services, money back guarantees and trial periods. The settlement puts in place a broad restitution plan requiring Vonage to make refunds to eligible consumers who have filed unresolved complaints regarding unauthorized charges from January 2004 through March 16, 2010. Consumers can file a complaint by contacting the Attorney General’s Office at 1-866-966-7226 or online at http://www.myfloridalegal.com.
In addition to Florida, participating states include: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Connecticut, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, and West Virginia.
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