How to Report US Cellular for False Advertising

Are you frustrated with US Cellular? Maybe you fell for a false ad but learned later that you lost money. Now you want to know how to report US Cellular for false advertising. We explain the laws, where to report them, and how to get compensation. 

What is False Advertising?

False advertising or marketing is any time a company presents information to you as the consumer which is false, incorrect, or misleading, even if they didn’t do it on purpose. 

The FTC defines false advertising below: 

Sourced from the FTC with creative input from FairShake.

The rules for businesses to follow exist at the state and federal level in the form of consumer protection laws. Most laws are governed by The Federal Trade Commission Act, which established the FTC in 1914, which gives the FTC jurisdiction to respond to complaints about false advertising from individuals or businesses, as outlined in the US legal code.

Note: No one actually needs to be misled for a court to find that an advertisement is misleading.

What Are the Different Types of False Advertising?

Sourced from the FTC with creative input from FairShake.

The FTC categorizes a lot of different types of false advertising, like that of unscientific claims where a company says something like, “product X has been proven to decrease blood pressure” when there is no such proof. The FTC takes these very seriously because of the significant harm they can cause to the health and safety of consumers. 

US Cellular False Advertising Scandals 

One of these bigger issues that US cellular faces is something similar to most cell phone providers: the issue of “unlimited” and throttling. The FTC as mentioned will examine the message conveyed in advertisements not just the actual text and with many cell phone companies, this one included, customers have complained that when they invest in unlimited data, as soon as they reach a certain level of usage, the company starts throttling or slowing down the service they get. This has resulted in numerous lawsuits over the years for half a dozen cell phone companies.

The issue lies in the fact that with US Cellular the fine print does explain that they will do this only, the FTC categorizes false advertising as situations where it is next to impossible for customers to locate that fine print which is why so many complaints have arisen.

The BBB page indicates issues honoring promotions through ads. In one case a customer signed up with US Cellular because of a promotion through one of their recent ads that would offer 50% off but in reality that promotion was never applied, the customer was charged full price with hidden fees, and was never able to get the discounted price but was now bound by contract.

What to Do If You See US Cellular False Advertising in Action

The FTC needs consumers like you to report US Cellular false advertising in action so they can follow up with an investigation. Remember the FTC does not require that anyone, yourself included, actually be affected by the false advertising in order to convict US Cellular of doing it or at the very least, investigate them.  

So, you can report the company by submitting a consumer complaint to the FTC. You can also submit a complaint to TruthinAdvertising.org where it will go public.

However, if you lost money and were wronged by false advertising, the rules that govern how you can get compensation will depend on your state’s laws related to Unfair and Deceptive Acts and Practices.

What can happen to US Cellular?

The FTC can choose what penalty to issue, usually starting with a letter demanding that US Cellular fix the legal issue, or a large fine for breaking the law. The punishments get worse if it is for a second or subsequent conviction. 

Affected by False Advertising? Here’s What You Can Do

Just because they are fined does not mean you get your money back. In most cases, legal action at this level won’t land in your pocket. So you can try US Cellular customer service directly, but chances are you already have and that has only worsened the situation. 

What’s left? Consumer arbitration. Consumer arbitration is usually faster and less expensive than going to court and is a better way to get back the money you lost. However there is still paperwork and deadlines, because it is a legal process and that can get complicated. That’s where we can help. FairShake helps you navigate the consumer arbitration process, from filing your claim to getting the resolution you deserve.

Tell us about your complaint and we’ll help you get a fair resolution.

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