Durham Woman Caught In Phone Billing Mix-Up
Posted May 29, 2003
DURHAM, N.C. — Many people complain about phone billing problems, but usually the customer has an account with the company.
That was not the case for Sylvia Dunston of Durham.
Dunston said she bought two cell phones from WorldCom Wireless -- one for herself and one for her daughter. When her contract ended, Dunston she sent the phones back to WorldCom and paid her $59 balance.
A month later, Dunston received a bill from AT&T.
"'What's going on?' I said, 'What is going on? What is going on?'" she said.
Dunston called AT&T and was told that WorldCom's wireless accounts were transferred to AT&T.
"I told him, I said, 'We have already paid this. Why are you sending me this bill?' He said, 'We're going by what WorldCom said. WorldCom said you owe this, so we're sending you the bill,'" she said.
The bills kept coming and Dunston said she continued calling.
"It just went in one ear and out the other. They just weren't listening. I don't know what kind of people they had working with them, but they just wouldn't listen to me," she said.
That is when Dunston called Five On Your Side for help.
After Five On Your Side's call, AT&T spokesman Brad Dougherty checked into it. He closed Dunston's account and deleted the $137 charge.
Dunston finally got what she wanted -- a statement with a zero balance.
"I was really happy. I said, 'Thank you Jesus' when she called and told me that she had gotten it straightened out," she said.
Dunston now uses AT&T for her cell phone service and has not had any billing problems.
Five On Your Side Producer: