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I’m frustrated

Do not pay a month in advance to Cable TV Companies.

Why do television companies charge in advance and customers have to pay. This must be stopped and consumer must revolt.
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  • ComcastCares (Comcast Digital Media Outreach Team) June 08, 2008 15:46
    Actually paying in advance reduces overall costs. Although you might not be a person that would not pay your bill, others don't always. When someone does not pay for services of any kind (credit cards, electric, cable, phone, even goods) those costs are added back into the products. By paying in advance, it reduces the amount of unpaid bills and therefore the added costs in your bill. I will be happy to share the feedback, but I do not foresee a change in this process because of this.

    I know this is not the response you would like to hear, but I want you to know that we appreciate the feedback.

    Frank Eliason
    Comcast
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    • "Actually paying in advance reduces overall costs. Although you might not be a person that would not pay your bill, others don't always."

      Mr. Eliason, you're such a good corporate puppet! Your superiors must be awfully proud of you! Comcast is THE first utility that I have *EVER* dealt with that demands payment in advance for services that haven't been rendered. The power company doesn't make me pay a month in advance. The gas company doesn't either. Neither does the phone company. What makes Comcast so damn special? Your charging me a month in advance because you say others dont pay their bill? Let me hand you a tissue! That gives your company the right to penalize ME for the inactions of others? No... it means that your company makes MORE money - you of course put my prepayment into an interest bearing account and soak the interest off of my money for free for that month. Sure - you probably earn a nickel, but multiply that times tens of milions of customers, and its a decent chunk of change.
    • So because we disagree with the practice you assume we will not be paying our bills??? Frank, this is both an out-of-hand disrespectful comment to the customer and vastly based in assumption. I think, instead, we can safely assume that the $ we advance to your company for services is not sitting without capital during the 30-45 day stretch before I have used the product. You are extending an enormous dis-service to your customer in your reply.
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  • I’m frustrated
    I disagree with this. First of all charging in advance is immoral as service was not given and consumer was charged. Also if company is keen to reduce the cost then get a loan from the bank but do not force the consumer to pay the bill in advance. I think this is forced loan which was put on the consumer and there was no interest paid to consumer and there is no benefit to consumer. I think the companies are getting away because of the monopoly and there is no competition in television industry. Consumer has very limited choice.
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  • I’m frustrated
    Has company done a survey and ask consumer before this type of billing was forced on consumer? I think they should do this.
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  • ComcastCares (Comcast Digital Media Outreach Team) June 08, 2008 19:08
    Immoral? Do you go to Wal Mart and take something home to try it first? Also isn't there a cost to loans?

    As mentioned above, there is a benefit to the Consumer because they do not have to pay as much because of uncollected payments. You may not realize it but we have to pay many of the channels to carry them. If we do not get paid, we still have to pay them. That is why uncollected payments would add to the costs for others.

    I will be happy to share the feedback, including what you mention regarding a survey. I do appreciate it.

    Frank
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    • i say forget all these morons trying to explain why were mad about paying for something we havnt recieved. I say we just start a nice class action lawsuit! maybe that would pull there heads out of there butts! its not the responsable consumers responsablity to pay your companys channels you moron!
    • Frank your an idiot! When a consumer purchases at Wal Mart the pruduct is theirs at that moment....you dumb ass! No gap between time of payment and ownership!
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  • I’m frustrated
    I disagree with this. First of all charging in advance is immoral as service was not given and consumer was charged. Also if company is keen to reduce the cost then get a loan from the bank but do not force the consumer to pay the bill in advance. I think this is forced loan which was put on the consumer and there was no interest paid to consumer and there is no benefit to consumer. I think the companies are getting away because of the monopoly and there is no competition in television industry. Consumer has very limited choice.
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  • I’m indifferent
    I fail to see how it is "immoral" to charge for a service before you receive it. As pointed out before, you pay before using any product from a store. You pay for tickets to events before you actually go in and enjoy the event. In most cases, you even pay for your food before you even know it's quality.

    The reason you don't pay in advance for utilities such as phone, power, gas, and water is because those are metered. You pay for what you use. In the case of phones, though, I have seen it where you pay for the base service in advance, and any incidentals (such as texting fees) after using them. You do, however, pay for garbage collection in advance.

    In the case of cable and internet, it has ALWAYS been the case where you pay in advance. If something happens and the service is not rendered, I have never had any problem getting a refund for the downtime. That's one of the few things that was ever easy for me to do with Comcast.

    As pointed out before, your payments help cover other peoples lack of payment. The more services that are rendered without payment, the higher the payments of those that ARE paying. By charging in advance, the company can cut people off sooner for not paying.

    Hospital costs are so high because hidden in your bill is additional charges that cover everyone that can't pay their bill.
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  • I’m Tired of Comcast
    1
    First, the Wal-Mart analogy doesn't play. I go to Wal-Mart for a product, not a service, which are two different things. I can easily take a bad product back to Wal-Mart, bad service from Comcast usually takes much longer to resolve (if resolved at all). Lemon's hopsital reference doesn't work either. Lemon's right we pay more for people who don't pay but at least we pay after the service is rendered. Comcast is the worst of both worlds as it is expensive and you still pay in advance. I think restaurants are a better analogy as they actually provide a service, which you pay for AFTER you recieve

    Regardless, Comcast's pay in advance would be more tolerable if there weren't so many problems when you change/cancel service. I recently changed my service and was hit with a number of confusing charges and credits. The CSR even apolgized for my bill having "alot of errors". He is spending it to their Billing Research Team. Seriously, Comcast's billing is so screwed up they need a separate department to "research" the issue. Morever, I've read numerous reports that when you cancel your Comcast service they make you wait several weeks to get your money back, so you are essentially giving them a loan.

    Let me see you spin that one Frank.
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  • 1
    Update: I feel a little bad for my last post. Although I stand by my original points, a little online research has demonstrated that Frank Eliason is actually trying to help the situation. I apologize for the last line of my post Mr. Eliason. It wasn't appropriate. While I still have issues with Comcast's service and billing approach I respect your efforts to improve the situation. Thank you.
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  • I’m happy
    LISTEN UP EVERYONE! People HAVE TO pay one month in advance because Comcast needs to get paid before they hand over the service to you. If you pay in April for May, and mail out a check, it can take over a week to get there, checks can get lost, or payments may be misapplied. A month is needed so that if something goes wrong, you will need even more time to get a payment in to them so the service does not get cut off. If you were to pay the day the month starts, and something goes wrong, like your Credit Card fails, Comcast will be now giving free service and if customer defaults after that on paying Comcast will be on the hook to pay for internet or cable that they have to pay someone else, which the customer never paid for. Do you realize how many people have cc'ed that are expired or go bad and it takes weeks for the customer to get back to them, the same applies to bounced checks and other problems.
    • Except a business can submit a claim to the person's credit report and there's countless other recourses they can take for someone who doesn't pay their bill.

      Consumers' only recourse is retaining a lawyer and filing charges.

      It's grossly unbalanced just the way Comcast originally set it up to be and is fighting tooth and nail to keep it that way.
    • OK I'm happy. If this is so true then what about doing this with Car Insurance??? They do NOT bill two months in advance. You get your premium and have a choice to pay the monthly, full year, or a little extra a month?? This is a Motor Vehicle that can destroy, kill, damage people, and things. Cable companies are NOT getting their money because first and foremost people cannot pay a car/mortgage payment a month for cable. So they are shooting themselves in their own foot by doing this. This to me is borderline illegal and I have personally had enough. This is my highest bill I have. With what I pay for cable I could be driving a brand new car along with paying for insurance. Enough is Enough!!!
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  • I’m frustrated
    I am in Houston, with a bill for $148 for service from 9/11-10/10. So far, I have had two days of service, my cable and HSI has been out for eight days (never lost power) You can bet I will not pay $148 and await a credit settlement from Comcast that is "fair" to me...Comcast needs to get their story straight about the credit, it should be applied on the current bill, not the next bill, a lot of us will not be Comcast customers in a month.
    I feel foolish to believe that a cable TV company could be an internet provider and phone company, my bad, will not repeat mistake again. AT&T is really showing how its done, I cannot tell you how many generators I have seen chained to AT&T equipment around town so that they could provide phone/DSL/Uverse service even if power to their equipment was out.
    • "Comcast needs to get their story straight about the credit, it should be applied on the current bill, not the next bill"

      In their defense, the credit could not be applied to the current bill because it has already printed and mailed, and the credit takes time for the accounting department to process, so the natural timeline dictates that it will post on the next bill simply by necessity.
    • Im assuming you are a little behind in time Jaq, we have the big wide world of computers and internet nowadays they even have updated phone systems.
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  • I’m used to it now...
    2
    When I moved a few years ago, I didn't realize I was paying in advance - I just always kept my bill at zero (except after Christmas...lol). When I moved, I got a credit back for the service I didn't use. After reading these posts, to be honest, I don't understand what your problem is with it. I signed up & use the service, so I need to pay for the service every month. If I'm late, I get a notice so I know when I have to make the payment so I don't get my services shut-off and have to pay a restore fee. So, I pay my bill.
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  • I HATE COMCAST!!! they said.. sign up for triple pay and your bill will drop by 20$ a month... I get the bill and its 6$ MORE. i move service to a new home and call to set it up. they say oh we have a special and its only 15$ to move service. The installer is 2 HOURS late, says he will get me a 40$ credit.. i get the bill and they charged me 85$ for the damn service change AND no 40$ credit.

    COMCAST IS RUN BY NOTHING MORE THAN THIEVES. THE SECOND I CAN GET AWAY FROM THIS MONEY GRUBBING MONOPLOY I WILL...

    I JUST PRAY FIOS COMES SOON!!!
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  • You give Comcast your credit card, debit, or other chargeable information. Paying in advance "for their own security" is BS. They can charge you whatever they'd like to if you don't pay a bill on your own.
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  • 1
    Comcast charges a month in advance and I NEVER got that money back after I cancelled service.

    Recently, I signed up for Comcast after not having it for a year. 2 weeks went by and I realized ATT had a MUCH better deal...more channels, FREE installation instead of the 100 bucks Comcast charged, and a FREE DVR. So after 2 weeks I cancelled my service. When I brought in all the equipment to return to Comcast, they said my balance was now ZERO because it was under thirty days. I asked him where my receipt was, and he said he didn't have one for me, and that Comcast would send me a final statement.

    I did receive that final statement. They want $190 for 2 weeks service! There's no way in HELL I'm paying it.

    I truly believe this was no accident. Comcast repeatedly "makes mistakes" in their own favor. They overcharge, which is basically stealing. This company is a behemoth that needs to be stopped. I'm seriously considering a class-action lawsuit against them.

    Thank God we have alternatives like ATT now.

    Vince
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  • 1
    by the way, AT&T requires NO ONE MONTH'S PAYMENT IN ADVANCE! explain THAT Comcrap.
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  • I honestly don't mind paying one month in advance, for many reasons. 1st - I'm just paying my monthly bill - in advance or not doesn't matter, it's the same bill. When my brakes needed an unexpected $1,000 job, I had a lot more leeway paying the bill, which really helped me out.
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  • I’m frustrated ironworker86
    I agree we should'nt have to pay in advance.my issue was in 2003 when I canceled not only did i have to pay for a future month i was going to recieve i also never got any money back thats wrong if they make you pay in advance then at least your last month should be free or reimbursed. I finally broke down and ordered comcast again because I hate the dish even more.I had to transfer my service so not only did I have to pay more reconnection fees but got no credit for the 16 days I was without service cause they said they couldnt get to me any sooner
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  • Its stealing, robbery, thievery, theft, lying, cheting, fraud, etc., etc., etc. You cannot change the rules of right and wrong or even the law without legislative amenment. Cable companies are breaking the law. If i worked at a cable company, and I would, I would do so knowing my company is breaking the law and is stealing. The way fruad is jsutified today is what shot America down and eventually we won't be able to get back up- it's inevitable- the samw way it's inevitable for people to keep justifying the wrong things they do!
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  • I’m PISSED
    I know I am being ripped off my whole bill is $495 now I am on a payment plan to pay $355 a month till December....if my bill is only $495 and I pay $355 that would mean I only owe $140 yet my current bill says we owe $841....our neighbors bill is only $238 a month and we have the same services....WHAT IS WRONG WITH THIS PICTURE!!!!!
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  • I’m frustrated
    @Frank I do not pay for services in advance...
    And talking about "customers who don't pay on time". I disconnected 3 months ago and still no refund of the "month in advance". How's that for not paying on time?
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  • when the system starts your service the bill cycle is set automatically, and that will automatically bill you partial charges from the date you started, to the end of your bill cycle. and the month in advanced... so, say you start on 07/01/2011
    you bill cycle 07/15/2011- in order to cover you for the rest of your service preventing you from getting cut off you must be billed from 07/16/2011 to 08/15/2011... makes sense now??
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  • The billing practices of cable companies and utilities are designed to keep you confused and keep money pouring in, cable bills one month in advance, and the utilities except South Jersey gas bill every 20 days, if you paid the bill every time it comes in you will be ahead one month and that's they way the want it, they make hundreds of billions each year, but they claim when people don't pay their bill they lose money, they all have hidden fees and are being investigated at this very moment by the Senate, the states allow then to do this, because these services are needed by everyone, if you electric or gas get shut off you can lose your children, or be forced to move out of your house for public health reasons, they have us over barrel and our representatives are afraid to take them on.
    At the very least it is consumer fraud, it will take the people to boycott these companies, but to do it, your services will be cut off and they know that, so there is really nothing you can do, except use as less services possible, cut off all non essential appliances, files thousands of pro se complaints in federal court to make them spend money, and plan a national utilities boycott day, everyone has to shut off all their utilities for at least 2 hours, then they will get the message and we have to elect people who will take them on, these are our only options, these bills accroding to the consumer protection agency should not be so confusing and misleading
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  • This reply was removed on 2014-02-03.
    see the change log
  • 1
    The part that I object to . . . is that they (COX cable) charge you a LATE FEE on services that they have yet to provide! HOW IS THAT LEGAL?
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  • I’m pissed
    if comcast truly billed in advance it might be ok but the thing is billing a month in advance means that if i cancel my services and i have maintained all payments then i would not get another bill but that is not what happens. In reality comcast is billing for an extra month! I have had comcast for years, almost 10. I have already been billed in advance and paid that in full but when i transferred my services when i moved comcast started billing me a month in advance again! This is not supposed to happen when you transfer. I have transferred several times over the years and this has never happened before but Comcast will not take the future billing off of my bill. I absolutely refuse to pay in advance AGAIN for services when I have already proven that I ALWAYS pay my bill ON TIME! I have never missed a single payment I am extrememely dissatisfied and plan to cancel soon
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  • I’m kidding
    After much long time i have decided to just unfollow this post.
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  • LOOK, There is only one reason why Comcast wants your money in advance. They cannot charge any more for there service without people going to another service. So they want your interest. Lets assume your bill is $200.00 and they are holding that monies in and interest baring account. Your $200.00 + interest would not even take notice by you if it was in your interest baring account maybe just a few cents a month. But Comcast has millions of subscribers. so lets say the average bill is $200.00 times 1 million subscribers. That's $200 million dollars at say 1.5% (.015) interest per month would equal almost 3 million dollars per month in profit off your $200.00 a month prepaid hold.

    I don't see how this can be legal and how they can start collection calls before the month service is even up. When they call I am like when you successful provide me with a months worth of service I'll pay for it.
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