Wednesday, May 28, 2008 Bad Business Practices

So we come across an unscrupulous company that has taken advantage of several of our associates. It begins with a simple listing and escalates to a full blown contract which according to them is impossible to get out of. The real question is, If their service is good why do they need to resort to full year contracts? Second question: If someone decides they need more coverage why is it necessary to also extend the contract when they upgrade the account?

Our associates basically got caught up by the second problem. They weren't getting enough coverage in their city and wanted to upgrade the account to include the entire city and not just the small rural area they lived in. Otherwise the advertisement would not be able to pay for itself. Unfortunately was not very clear that they were going to have to extend the contract another full to re-start at the date of the upgrade. So rather than just add a few features and more money to the account they also extended the amount of time on the contract by a whole year.

Trying to resolve the situation our associate only wanted to be able to cancel the contract after the original contract date of completion which would have been back in march completing a full year of payments from March 2007 to March of 2008 but refuses to honor that original contract date stating that the n"new contract cancels out the old one and that essentially now the contract runs all the way into September of 2008.

After explaining that the client was not happy with the performance and that he would like to make sure the ads were cancelled as soon as possible, the sales associate assured him that the ads would be cancelled and no more bills would come in after the end of the contract which was set to expire in March 2008. He had specified that the ads would stop in March of 2008, but then the bill for March came so another phone call was made to the sales rep. and the sales rep explained that it runs til the end of the month so there would still be a bill for March but that should be the last one.

Fast forward one month later same situation, The April bill arrives for another $200, At this point our associate has had enough and refuses to pay until the situation is resolved. The sales rep promises to look into it and take care of the problem. No return phone call is made however and one month later phone calls from the collections department verify that the problem still exists. More Bills come in the mail for May, and every time our associate explains the situation to their collections department they all say the same thing, your contract was renewed and extended to September. Trying to resolve the issue our associate made more phone calls to his sales rep and to his sales reps manager. Phone calls were not returned so he filed a grievance with the BBB (Better Business Bureu) Stating that all he wanted was for the people to simply honor the original contract dates and cancell the Ad contract in March of 2008 rather than September.