Pre-owned phone not what it was cracked up to be? Your options vs. Verizon Wireless
Did you buy a refurbished phone from Verizon Wireless that doesn’t work? Were you sold a refurbished phone as new? Here’s what you can do.
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Verizon Wireless explains there are used phones, refurbished phones, and certified pre-owned phones, but they only offer certified pre-owned devices to guarantee 100% functionality.
Any refurbished phone from Verizon Wireless undergoes the Total Quality Inspection where technicians verify that all the buttons work and the software is up-to-date, the images on the screen or clear in each pixel works properly, it connects to Wi-Fi, the ports and card slots work properly, the Bluetooth, speakers, and microphones are working effectively, and the battery charges.
Verizon customers with unresolved complaints may be able to claim compensation. Let us help!Start Your Claim
Every certified pre-owned phone from Verizon comes with a 90-day warranty. If there is a manufacturing defect within 90 days, Verizon will simply replace the refurbished phone with a new phone of equal value.
They also offer the total mobile protection for eligible certified pre-owned phones. This is an additional $12 per month but it gives you same day device replacement and set up as well as things like battery replacement and unlimited cracked screen repairs.
So what happens if you received a refurbished phone from Verizon Wireless that doesn’t work? Worse, what do you do if you bought a new phone from Verizon Wireless but it turns out it was refurbished?
The first thing you should do is report it. This includes reporting the situation to Verizon Wireless so that they can give you a resolution.
If you purchased a new phone that turned out to be refurbished or a refurbished phone from Verizon Wireless that turned out to be stolen, you have to report it to the police and the Verizon Wireless.
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Once that is done you can submit a complaint using informal or formal methods to organizations that have legal authority to investigate the issue and follow up with Verizon Wireless like the FCC or review websites and social media pages so that other customers can be made aware of the issue.
Start with the FCC. The FCC is a regulatory body that needs to know when refurbished phone scams take place so that they can follow up with a company and enforce better standards. If something illegal happened, they need to know so they can issue the necessary punitive measures.
You can file a complaint with the FCC online here or report fraud here.
Tip: You can learn more about what is currently going on or under review between the FTC and Verizon Wireless in your state or area online at ftc.gov/exploredata.
From there you can send a report to your State Attorney General office. Every state has an attorney general whose job it is to ensure companies operating within that state adhere to the laws and their agreements with consumers. If you purchase a phone new or refurbished from Verizon Wireless, you do so under the auspices that that phone will function. If it doesn’t function or you were sold the wrong type of phone, state law enforcement needs to know.
You can find your state Attorney General office here.
The BBB is a great place to submit consumer complaints, especially if the issue relates to one specific cell phone carrier, store, or branch. The Better Business Bureau can serve as an advocate insofar as they might reach out to the cell phone carrier on your behalf but only to let them know that you had a problem or an issue that should be fixed. The company is under no obligation to respond to anything from the Better Business Bureau.
You can file a complaint with the BBB here.
ConsumerAffairs.com is another website where you can submit complaints. While they are not likely to provide any resolution, the wireless provider might look into the complaints and reach out for assistance.
You can file a complaint with ConsumerAffairs.com online.
The last thing you can try is social media. If you are very lucky the company might monitor their social media pages and respond to your issue because of the publicity surrounding a public post.
Verizon Wireless has a Twitter account just for customer issues, where you can submit a complaint.
Tip: Wondering whether your “new” phone is actually new? Here are some quick tests you can do in the store or at home before you buy.
After you submit your complaint, if you submitted an informal complaint such as the company’s Facebook page, they might reach out to you directly in response. If they monitor their Better Business Bureau page, they might attempt a resolution. In any case it’s important to keep copies of your correspondence and your posts.
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It’s not very likely that formal or informal methods will generate a response let alone a resolution from Verizon Wireless. But that doesn’t mean you are out of options. Let us help you with consumer arbitration.
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