Hello people for the last several months I have had an argument with Vonage the are non compliant with state laws. As of March 2019 Vonage has had an increase in the RCIP or Regulatory Compliance and Intellectual Properties Fees. This is not applicable to all accounts but it is to mine.
According to both the Board of Public Utilities Regulations and Fair Collection Practices in the State of New Jersey which is where I live and where Vonage HQ is in Homdel, NJ off Exit 114 of the Garden State Parkway (I-87 and US-9 at that point as well) and NJ-35 and NJ-36 Vonage needs to notify the customer of the final amount of the automatic draw for the next payment.
Starting with the RCIP increase Vonage claims they notified sufficiently according to the law that the RCIP will increase from 1.99 to 2.99 fine and dandy but the RCIP is also taxable and they didn't include the tax amount also another fee which they call the federal program fee which really is called the Universal Service Fund Charge (a program to help the needy with utilities including Power and Telephone in which turns into here in NJ as The Home Energy assistance programs of HEAP and LIHEAP as well as also a program called Lifeline.) Now also this federal program fee also changes every three months as well. Which is why this argument is being made.
Now the laws do state that with an automatic payment and or draw the final charge of the draw has to be notified 10 business days in advance or in short two weeks. Vonage claims well that is what the estimated charges are. Well not correct in my case.
The argument was first made on February 8th 2019, and subsequently again on February 22 2019, and has continued to be an argument each quarter when the federal program fee changes. Though for the most part an insignificant amount of a change in the automatic payment I am in most case never been fully appraised of my automatic payment 10 business days before the payment as required by law.
I am almost up on my 1 year contractual agreement which started December 2 2019, which is also an issue in it of itself. when the service was started. the only month I was made fully aware of what my charges would be 10 days before the automatic Payment was notified to me 31 days in advanced and properly for 02/02/2019 and it was properly notified to my on 01/02/2019. This is the only month where I had know what my automatic payment was 10 business days ahead of time.
Also during sign up I had to wait for my Vonage adapter for 3 whole calendar days where I was being charged for the service but not able to use it and was never compensated for the time with out service. This happened again in late march where my adapter failed to work properly and I had to wait another 4 days for a replacement adapter. However I was compensated at that point with a free month.
On February 22nd 2019 After fighting with the supervisors to make my point about the RCIP increase, and this is the argument I was making and it was in fact the case when it happened. Which I also understand why but they are also not making the effort to correct it either. But since the RCIP increase was going to be effective as of March 1, 2019 they system in February after the February Payment was made said estimates charges for next payment was 19.11 when in all actuality it was 20.33 they claim they sent out notices but once again the notice only mentioned the primary adjustment not the total amount The amount was not properly adjusted until March 1. 2019 once the increase was in effect. The argument was if you know it was going to increase why not have your system adjust and the Law requires a notification 10 business days in Advanced which in my case needed to be by February 12, 2019 what my payment for March 02, 2019 1 Day notice is not compliant with the laws. Vonage claims that the notice was sufficient to comply with the laws my argument that the law states it need to be the final charge they will take on the automatic payment. Vonage claims we put the estimated charges we have filled our obligation to the law. But the law requires an accurate amount not estimated changes on a automatic recurring payment. Vonage does not have the option of a non automatic recurring payment therefore they are in non-compliance and also Vonage is a prepaid service you are paying for the month ahead not the month behind., being the month behind would have made this a different story as well.
This RCIP increase was known to Vonage more than 45 days before effect therefore the system should have adjusted the estimated charges to include the new changes in the estimate charges well before March 1, 2019.
As a result of this argument Vonage has given me a recurring credit of 1.00 to compensate for the increase for the next 12 months as of February 22, 2019. However this recurring credit does also issue me credits for taxes and the Federal Program fees as well so it is more than a 1.00 and it also adjusts every 3 months with the federal program fees charge changes. This charge is applied every month on my account between the 20th and the 24th, and it varied every three months starting in April's billing cycle for May changed again in July's Billing Cycle for August, and it will change again in October's payment for November. I will have no idea what my next payment will be until after the 24th which once again is not 10 business days before the automatic payment on the 2nd of November.
This month as well as the months of January April July and now the month of October and in essence also the month of March and the month of June due to the RCIP increase and a price hike as originally agreed upon, I did not know what my final bill would be until the 1st of each month when my payment would be the very next day. 1 day is not a proper notice in accordance of the law. This is due to the system only adjusting the charges in the effective month not in the previous month even though the next payment would include said changes in charges.
All adjustments to the next payment have been known to Vonage for at least 20 days that they will take place however the system does not adjust for said adjustment. The RCIP increase Vonage sent out notices as of January 14th, 2019 My original price hike on June 2, 2019 was known to Vonage as of May 2nd, along with its retrospective correction due to agent stupidity, as far as the federal program fees go since I do work along side of the FCC and can confirm when Vonage got the notice of the fee increases and decreases they had plenty of time to update their systems to be in compliance but has simply refused.
I have at this point understood and accepted their illegal explanation, which is still illegal, Other prepaid services do inform you properly with similar systems, for example Verizon and AT&T Prepaid, Ultra mobile however would be another culprit however my cycle date is in the middle of the month now and because of that they are in compliance in that respect. This really affects customers who's billing cycle falls in the first 2 weeks of the month as everyone else will be properly informed before the automatic payment.
Vonage has not taken action on the matter, and refuses claiming due to system limitations. Fine system limitations well over come them to be in compliance.
Also Vonage agents are also very abusive to me I am identifying myself as a male and the agents continue to call me Ma'am. Misgendering is offensive and disrespectful to the customer and it is considered abusive behavior more so if my name is a male name, and they have been warned repeatedly.
Vonage agents have lied to me completely, on a Previous issue in April actually on April 24. 2019 I was asking one again about yet another increase, that would be effective for June 2nd's Payment, they once again couldn't even give me an estimate properly. When I signed up I signed up for 9.99 plus taxes and fees for 6 months, June would have been month 7 so my rate would have increased to 24.99 plus taxes and fees once again I was trying to get an idea to what they would be since once again the increase would be increased taxes and fee, they agents told me that the taxes and fees wouldn't change and one supervisor told me my promotion was for 12 months not 6 which was what I agreed to when I signed up, This supervisor was so instant that it was for 12 months That I made a deal with that he was forced to honor, he did however tell me he would call me back on May 2nd but never did, The deal was that if my bill was more than 25 dollars he would have to call me back and keep his word that the next six months would be at 9.99 which he in essence did. It was in the notes of the account the deal he made with me and it was honored on May 2nd, However once again the estimated charges even though the plan was changed was telling me it was 39 dollars and change. The charges didn't adjust until June 2, 2019. also the deal also did include a fix rate after December 2nd of 14.99 plus taxes and fees and it sure will beat the 24.99 that it would have been and this 14.99 is for the remainder of the life of the account considering the plan does not change.
The plan however will change, as due to these complications with Vonage I have decided to leave when my Contract is up in the middle of November, I do not need to do business with liars, abusive agents an a company that will not fix their system to be in compliant with the law.
Vonage now on October 3, 2019 still claims they are in compliance and I have been given a proper explanation which I have accepted as their explanation and has developed a work around, using other Vonage Polices to my advantage to came up with a way to effectively disable the automatic payments and take advantage of their 20 day grace period. Due to the way this effectively disables it is at the cost of Vonage, however due to their non-compliance just over a dollar in processing fees is a small consequence of their non-compliance
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******PLEASE READ IF YOU ARE A SENIOR CITIZEN**********
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They still charged us after we terminated service called final billing charge ..... post my service cancellation.
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Great help when you need it. Love the service
Review by Dalt Csepeli3 months ago
I think your a bunch of crooks that give crooks a way to rob people
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We use this for our business and are happy we switched! Very helpful with setting up, very accommodating and dedicated customer service, and quality is great!
Review by Jumat3 months ago
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Still waiting of being able to do attachments with text messaging !
It has been a while.
In this day and age who would have thought that this was not a functional thing from the start.
Review by Farce4 months ago
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I have had some service issues pop up from time to time, and Frank has been GREAT handling them promptly. If he can't take care of something, he immediately connects me with the person who can. You help keep me in business.
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Nice text messaging through the landline....lovely app and good transfer of calls after hours
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great for a company that is starting out. once you start adding more phones you will need another company.
Review by Ehsas Yenokyan4 months ago
Worst company ever. Took me forever to cancel my service, after two weeks trying to cancel it and hundreds of hung ups calls and dropped calls finally I could cancel.
Now. A year after, I recieved a letter from a collection comp. Saying I owed $18.61 to them.
Really Vonage? They don't even told me o notified me for that. I never recieved a bill, call o email about it, not even when I cancelled the service on that time.
This company ROB you, stay away from this company
Review by Iftach4 months ago
The phone service itself is ok. The customer service is poor and the company policies are akin to theft. To cancel an account, you can not do that on your control panel. You have to call the company, and the wait time is sometimes 30 minutes or more. Then when you finally get through, they have to transfer you to another depart and the hold time begins again. After three attempts over the past several times, I got through today. They read me my disclaimer saying that I had a zero balance and cancelled my account. Then the rep said, oops, you have a $66 balance and since I've already cancelled your account, you've been sent to collections. The rep didn't apologize and said there was nothing she could do. It's not hard to do the right thing, but first you have to care. Vonage doesn't care. Stay away.
Review by Sheridean Askelin4 months ago
Junk Calls. Too many robo calls, hang ups, wrong numbers and junk calls.
Review by Rohap4 months ago
Customer service is great, quality of service is beyond expectations.
Review by Deelish4 months ago
Vonage is completely untrustworthy. They have taken a payment from our checking account that they promised not to use. After speaking with them on the phone they said they would close my account(at my request) and refund the payment. That was 5 days ago. There is no sign of them returning the payment so I'm reporting the transaction to the bank and having the payment reversed. I wish I had done more research on Vonage before I signed up with thme. It would have prevented all this because I would not have considered them as a phone service.
Review by Koyanagi5 months ago
Entirely inadequate customer support. I had an issue I tried to troubleshoot yesterday and the agent was very rude. Attempted to troubleshoot again today and waited on hold for 40 minutes. Absolutely unacceptable.
Vonage, if interested in responding, Account Number :
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We're pleased with the quality of the product... but service needs improvement. We've been billed the incorrect rate for the past 2 months. Found out that the billing rate was correct with additional taxes and fees that we weren't made aware of. Still the best value for the price.
Review by Thirsty5 months ago
excellent follow-up and knowledgeable tech support and customer service
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The phone service is great but the app needs improvement. It doesn't work when l really need it.
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The lines kept going out, they would not provide billing, shut us off twice, refused to accept proof of payment after talking with supervisor. Worst experience with a utility company ever.
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