Understanding Hidden Fees in Your T-Mobile Bill

If T-Mobile is hiding fees in your bill, you may have legal options.

Did you receive your bill but you noticed some hidden fees in your T-Mobile bill this month? Maybe you have noticed a few hidden fees in your T-Mobile bill over the last several months and now you want to know why they appeared, and what your legal options are if you have been charged something undeservedly. We explain your options.

It is important to look at your T-Mobile bill every month and to verify line by line what items you are being charged for. This will help you to identify when there is a hidden see that you didn’t expect, and figure out why it was there.

Your regular subscription will result in your base monthly charges but then there are additional, hidden fees that you might not expect like canceling a subscription which, if you are cancelling an app subscription might incur a hidden fee. If you purchase any apps or content, this can incur unexpected charges. There are fees for in-app purchases that might show up unexpectedly.

You might also find text collect services that give you a one-time charge for receiving a call from a correctional facility. You can choose to build a one-time or a recurring donation to different charities and have it added to your bill.

Extra fees, taxes, and surcharges

There are a lot of extra fees that take the form of taxes and surcharges which might get lumped together on your T-Mobile bill. All of the T-Mobile plans automatically include the taxes and surcharges but they vary based on where you live because different states charge T-Mobile different amounts for various taxes and that gets put on to your bill.

For example, T-Mobile is legally required to collect a 911 surcharge on behalf of your state and your local governments and that amount varies based on where you live.  In some states there are regulatory program fees or recovery fees that have to do with third-party services and government programs and these are charged to T-Mobile and then T-Mobile recovers those costs by charging you. This might include:

    • Regulatory Programs Fee
    • Telco Recovery Fee
    • Voice lines: $3.18 per line every month
    • Mobile Internet lines: $1.16 per line every month
    • Universal Service Fund Fee
    • Utility User Tax

Hidden T-Mobile fees

There are a handful of hidden T-Mobile fees that can be recurring or one-time fees.

Account restore fee

If you have an account that gets suspended or shut down because you didn’t pay on time, once you reinstate your account they will charge you a hidden fee of $20 plus tax which will show up as a one-time fee for restore on your bill.

Activation fee

If you live in Puerto Rico there is a one-time hidden activation fee.

Bill reprint & detailed billing fees

If you need a second copy of your bill, you get one free reprint every calendar year but any additional request will incur a hidden $5 fee and it will show up as a bill reprint fee.

Late fee

If you make a late payment, T-Mobile will charge you a late fee. Depending on where you live, that could be $5 or more, usually up to 1.5% of your total balance. Some states automatically give you a grace period but that doesn’t apply to partial account suspensions and if you make a late payment oh, you will see the additional hidden fee of a “late fee for invoice”.

Mobile number change fee

If you want to change your mobile number, T-Mobile makes it very easy but they will charge you a hidden fee of $15 every time you change your number. This will appear on your bill as “One time charge for MSICHG”.

Non-return fee

If you are required to return a device to T-Mobile, you have to mail that device within 7 days, but if it is damaged or you mail a different device, or you don’t mail it on time you will be charged a non-refundable hidden fee up to $500 which will appear on your bill as “Warranty Non-Return Fee”.

Out of warranty fee

If something is outside of your warranty, you will find another hidden charge the amount of which varies based on the device and it will show up on your bill as “Warranty Non-Return Fee”.

Payment support fee

If you have to use customer support to make a payment rather than using the self serve options on the website, T-Mobile will charge you a hidden fee of $8 for every time you use it. This will show up on your bill as the payment support fee.

Restocking fee

If you return a device oh, you might be charged a restocking fee that can range between $25 and $75 and it will show up as a restocking fee on your bill.

Returned payment fee

If you pay your bill with a check and it gets returned, depending on which state you live in you will be charged a fee for a returned payment and that will show up as “returned payment fee” on your bill.

Shipping charges

Any product that you have shipped to you will incur hidden shipping fees which vary based on where you live. They also vary based on whether you pick standard shipping or expedited shipping.

Upgrade support charge fee

If you get help with an upgrade, basically if you don’t use Self-Service, and instead get help from a T-Mobile representative, they will charge you a hidden fee of $20 which will show up on your next bill under the title, “upgrade support charge” charge.

Outside Collection Fee

If your account is referred to a collection agency because you failed to pay your bill, you will also see a hidden fee called the outside collection fee. That is calculated as a percentage of the total amount you owe and it will be titled on your next bill, “one-time charge for outside collection fee”.

What other details do I need to consider when looking for hidden fees in my T-Mobile bill?

Most T-Mobile accounts are billed for services starting at the beginning of the cycle and then that bill is due within the same billing cycle. If you change your due date you might end up having to pay two payments within a short amount of time and in some cases you might have a significantly larger bill the following months than you expected because it has one full month of charges and prorated charges from a previous billing cycle.

If you have an older account you might also be billed for services after your billing cycle is closed.

What can I do if I was incorrectly charged a fee?

If you were incorrectly charged a fee, you can try and refute it with T-Mobile customer service. But if you have tried that and they won’t fix it, you still have two options:

  1. You can go through small claims court. Small claims courts can be tricky, and they have monetary limits on how much compensation you can ask for (which varies by state). So your case might not qualify.
  2. You can also use a faster and often easier option: consumer arbitration. With consumer arbitration you have more flexibility, can usually get a faster resolution, and what’s more, we can help.

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