Attorney General spokesman Lynn Hicks. He says all three violated the consumer fraud act and the door-to-door sales act. One settlement involved First Choice Communications from Mesa, Arizona, which sold packages at the 2016 Iowa State Fair. “One consumer in particular signed up and complained to our office because he thought it was going to be $90 a month for two years. That was August at the fair and by December he was getting a bill for $160s a month,” Hicks explains.
X-cite Satellite was another company which got into trouble for the way it sold its packages. “They were selling both Direct-TV and Viasat services and they were misleading customers into believing that they were with AT&T or Dish Network. They were telling them things like you are in a red zone and your rates are going to be going up soon and you might want to consider changing your provider,” according to Hicks.
IKONIK Satellite of Utah was the third provider to reach a settlement after the Attorney General’s Office found the made misrepresentations to customers over contracts, improperly assessing cancellation fees, and failing to provide a three-day notice of the customer’s right to cancel.
Hicks says you should never be pushed into signing a satellite contract. He says if someone is trying to rush you into something, you can always ask for time to consider a purchase and under the Door-To-Door Sales Act, you should get written and oral notice that you have three business days to cancel a purchase for any reason.
He says you should also ask questions about what you are getting. “Be very clear about who you are dealing with. Are you actually dealing with DirectTV or are you dealing with a third party seller?,” Hicks says. “And where are they doing business, how do you get ahold of them if you have problems. And also, another thing, make sure you understand just what a provider is offering and charging. If this is a teaser rate, how long does it last?”
The settlements were negotiated earlier this year and Hicks says customers should have already heard from the company. He says if anyone who is a customer of the three companies and hasn’t heard from them, then you can contact the Attorney General’s Office. The companies also paid a total of $52,000 to the state for the Consumer Education and Litigation Fund.