|My Experiences With Various Companies|
First USA/Bank One
Discover was the first company that I caught at their nasty little game.
When I signed up for their card, I specifically told the operator that I was only interested if she could guarantee that I would not be telemarketed. Since she said she could take care of that immediately, I signed up for the card. A few months later, I got a sales call from Discover. I called their corporate office, where I was handed all the classic excuses. I made it clear that I wasn't going away, so after their normal lies didn't work, they offered "an alternative solution." I was inexperienced then, so I accepted a $50 credit on my account plus a guarantee that I would never be called again.
Of course, they did call again, and this time I told them I wanted the whole enchilada--$500, or I'd take them to court for this instance PLUS the previous instance. They declined my invitation to settle quickly. I filed a lawsuit in small claims, and they suddenly wanted to settle.
Read the details of the case, as well as the legal complaint I filed in Small Claims Court
First USA/Bank One was my second case, though it all shook out quickly (before my dealings with Discover were completed). I received a telemarketing call from the National Bank of Detroit. They thanked me for my business in the past, and wanted me to accept one of their credit cards. Since I had never heard of the First National Bank of Detroit, nor had I ever even been to Detroit (or even had the inclination), I decided to do a little follow up work in addition to my normal Do Not Call request. It turns out that my bank had actually sold the information to First National Bank of Detroit. I sent registered mail to my bank, as well as to Bank One, who was in the process of buying my bank out. The letter stated in no uncertain terms that I did not wish to be telemarketed by them or anyone affiliated with them.
Sure as telemarketers are greedy bastards, I got another call from an affiliated bank--First USA. First USA had actually called me in the past, and I was going to bust them on just that one repeat call until I learned that Bank One owned First USA. I started connecting the dots, and I came up with five different instances where I could charge them with calling after requesting to be put on the Do Not Call list.
I told them that they could settle immediately for $500 and no hassle, otherwise I'd take them to court for all of the instances. I expected them to hassle me, but they just sent the check for $500, no hassle. They also included a non-disclosure contract, which was not part of the bargain. Since it was never discussed, I simply cashed the check and didn't sign their contract. They probably figured I'd just sign it if they sent it with the check. Consider the fact that they went to the trouble of trying to get a non-disclosure on a measley $500 case that could have been 5 times that.
Read the details of the case, as well as the contract I didn't sign.
Convergys Corporation is a telemarketing firm. They are the ones who actually do the dirty work on behalf of companies like the above two. One day I realized that if I told the telemarketing firm itself to put me on their Do Not Call list as well as the list of their client's, I could kill more than two vultures with one stone. Not only would the client have me on their Do Not Call list, the telemarketer would have me on the list for future clients as well. Of course, after starting this practice, I eventually got two calls from Convergys, who takes in $1.5 billion a year, and makes a million phone calls a day! I talked to their lawyer who was buddy-buddy until I let him know that I wasn't going to be deterred from collecting my $500. When he realized he couldn't talk me out of it, he was no longer my pal. Easy come, easy go, I guess. But after many emails back and forth, he gradually became nastier and nastier until he showed his true colors by threatening me legally. It was, of course all very amusing, and the emails are included in the details for your amusement.
Check out the details of the case, and in particular, the email from the lowest of the low--a telemarketing lawyer.
Silverleaf Resorts brought me out of a two year retirement. I suppose I should thank them. From failure to honor my Do Not Call request to all-out illegal prerecorded calls, they added up to my biggest demand ever, which I delivered via my first well-written demand letter (if I may be so bold as to say so).
Read all about it.