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Old 05-08-2014, 01:19 PM   #1
NJRonbo
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Is it Policy for Verizon to charge set top box fee for Tivo usage?

I have four Tivo units in my home.

Been slowly replacing all the Verizon HD Set Top boxes that I had.

I have no more Verizon HD Set Top boxes.

I am renting 4 multi-stream cards from Verizon.

....but there is still a $7.99 Rental HD Box Charge on my account.

There is a conflict of explanations as to why, pending who I talk to at Verizon Fios....

One explanation is that the HD Box I mailed back was never received.

The other, is that it is policy for Verizon to charge a HD Box fee for people using their HD service, even if the receiving units are Tivo boxes.

Anyone know the real story here?
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Old 05-08-2014, 01:41 PM   #2
Diana Collins
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I assume you are also being charged for the Cablecards? That should be the only rental charges.
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Old 05-08-2014, 02:06 PM   #3
NJRonbo
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I am being charged for 4 cable cards and a set top box that I do not own (but once did).

They are saying (or at least one of 2 reps are saying) it is their policy to charge for a single set top box when using cable cards with other units outside of theirs.
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Old 05-08-2014, 03:36 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJRonbo View Post
I am being charged for 4 cable cards and a set top box that I do not own (but once did).
They are saying (or at least one of 2 reps are saying) it is their policy to charge for a single set top box when using cable cards with other units outside of theirs.
They are full of it.. that's not the way it works.
I have never had a Verizon STB, I have 5 CableCARDS and am charged $4.99 each, that's it.
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Old 05-08-2014, 04:17 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJRonbo View Post
I am being charged for 4 cable cards and a set top box that I do not own (but once did).

They are saying (or at least one of 2 reps are saying) it is their policy to charge for a single set top box when using cable cards with other units outside of theirs.
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They are full of it.. that's not the way it works.
I have never had a Verizon STB, I have 5 CableCARDS and am charged $4.99 each, that's it.
+1

In fact, if your package includes an STB, you should be receiving at least one "Customer Owned Equipment Credit".
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Old 05-08-2014, 04:24 PM   #6
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"full of it" rhymes with what I was going to say. $5 per card is bad enough without paying for a box you don't even have.

NJRonbo, you need to get a straight answer on whether they received your box back or not. Did you save your UPS tracking number? (or however you shipped it) If you didn't track it, Verizon will still know whether or not they received it, you'll just have to trust them. If the box got lost (or they lost it after receiving it), you'll have to deal with that.

If they did get the box back, then they need to stop charging you for it. At least for now (we probably shouldn't give them any ideas), Verizon does not charge you for cable boxes you don't have.

Ask for a supervisor, or try the live chat. They will usually take the time to find the correct answer instead of just trying to get you off the phone. If they try the "its our policy" crap again, demand to see it in writing (e.g., on their website). If that doesn't work, ask them, politely, "who do I need to speak to to cancel my service?" Give them two options: (1) remove the $8 fee they aren't supposed to be charging you, or (2) lose the $100+/month you are paying. Don't worry, they are going to pick option (1) eventually.
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Old 05-09-2014, 09:08 AM   #7
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Verizon used to have a policy where you had to rent at least one of their boxes if you owned any of your own cablecard equipment. I believe that policy was overridden with new FCC regulations that allowed you to own 100% of your hardware if you only required cablecards. I got rid of all of my Verizon hardware except for renting three cablecards. I'm no longer being charged for any of their boxes.

FWIW, $5 per cablecard is not an unreasonable amount if the device it's being used in has multiple tuners. Compare that to a single set top box for each tuner and it's not a bad deal. Comcast may give you cards for free but they charge you extra outlet fees, which is highway robbery. Verizon doesn't charge any such fees so all you're paying for is the cablecard rental.

BTW, last time I checked, the fee for a Verizon HD box was about $10-12 and not $7.99.
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Old 05-09-2014, 10:40 AM   #8
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The same thing happend to me. I turned in their crappy DVR and got 2 cable cards for my TiVos. For the next 6 months, I was still charged for their DVR. 2 calls and 2 visits to a Verizon store and they fixed it and credited my account. Keep on fighting it. You should only be paying one ripoff fee (the cable cards), not two.





Quote:
Originally Posted by NJRonbo View Post
I have four Tivo units in my home.

Been slowly replacing all the Verizon HD Set Top boxes that I had.

I have no more Verizon HD Set Top boxes.

I am renting 4 multi-stream cards from Verizon.

....but there is still a $7.99 Rental HD Box Charge on my account.

There is a conflict of explanations as to why, pending who I talk to at Verizon Fios....

One explanation is that the HD Box I mailed back was never received.

The other, is that it is policy for Verizon to charge a HD Box fee for people using their HD service, even if the receiving units are Tivo boxes.

Anyone know the real story here?

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Old 05-09-2014, 01:06 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJRonbo View Post
I have four Tivo units in my home.

Been slowly replacing all the Verizon HD Set Top boxes that I had.

I have no more Verizon HD Set Top boxes.

I am renting 4 multi-stream cards from Verizon.

....but there is still a $7.99 Rental HD Box Charge on my account.

There is a conflict of explanations as to why, pending who I talk to at Verizon Fios....

One explanation is that the HD Box I mailed back was never received.

The other, is that it is policy for Verizon to charge a HD Box fee for people using their HD service, even if the receiving units are Tivo boxes.

Anyone know the real story here?
If they claim there is a box given to you that they never received back then I could see them charging you for that however I would fight that hard, escalate it if needed up the chain to management
If you no longer have any VZ Set top boxes then you shouldn't be charged anything other than the 4.99 Cable card charge for each card you have.
I myself am on a Roamio Plus with 3 minis and only pay 1 card charge from them.
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Old 05-09-2014, 02:19 PM   #10
NJRonbo
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Yeah, the box was lost when sent back via UPS.

Hard to prove that. I have no receipt and no claim was escalated at the time other than attempts to leave voice messages at the local Verizon office which went unanswered.

They are looking into the lost box and how to deal with it.
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Old 05-09-2014, 02:56 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by NJRonbo View Post
Yeah, the box was lost when sent back via UPS.

Hard to prove that. I have no receipt and no claim was escalated at the time other than attempts to leave voice messages at the local Verizon office which went unanswered.

They are looking into the lost box and how to deal with it.
I'd bet the farm that Verizon lost it in their system after receiving it. Keep complaining and tell them there was no value in the box for you, I.e. There is nothing you could use it for or sell.
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Old 05-10-2014, 07:06 AM   #12
mr.unnatural
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How did you return the box to Verizon? You can either turn them in to one of their store locations and pay a fee or drop it off at any UPS store and they'll ship it back for you at no charge. In either case you should have gotten a receipt from Verizon or UPS. UPS would have also provided a tracking number.
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Old 05-10-2014, 10:41 AM   #13
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Comcast may give you cards for free but they charge you extra outlet fees, which is highway robbery.
That's not true for all Comcast franchises (for better or worse since they don't have a nationwide consistent model). I have 2 Series 3 OLED which require 2 CableCards each. The first one is free and I'm only paying $1.00 for the other 3 with no additional outlet fees.

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Old 05-10-2014, 11:46 AM   #14
mr.unnatural
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That's one area where Verizon has a huge advantage over Comcast. At least with Verizon you already know what they'll charge, regardless of your location. Comcast franchises seem to charge whatever they feel like with no regard for consistency.
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Old 05-10-2014, 12:04 PM   #15
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That's one area where Verizon has a huge advantage over Comcast. At least with Verizon you already know what they'll charge, regardless of your location. Comcast franchises seem to charge whatever they feel like with no regard for consistency.
Helps when you build new infrastructure and services versus growth through acquisition where you need to merge billing and infrastructure services. It seems like Comcast has their packages and pricing more consistent than CableCard and additional outlet requirements and costs so I wonder how much of that latter difference is due to legacy systems or even specific franchise agreements from acquisitions.

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Old 05-11-2014, 01:51 AM   #16
NJRonbo
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How did you return the box to Verizon? You can either turn them in to one of their store locations and pay a fee or drop it off at any UPS store and they'll ship it back for you at no charge. In either case you should have gotten a receipt from Verizon or UPS. UPS would have also provided a tracking number.
Dropped the box off at UPS. It had their shipping label on it.

Did not ask for a receipt. It was only going a few towns over.

Verizon claims they never received it. I am now in "hold" mode as Verizon is looking into what to do about the unreceived box and if they will credit me for the months I have not had it.

I suppose I will get a phone call about it later this week.

There is still multiple answers from different reps about the question of whether I need to be charged a box fee for the 4 cards I am using. That is another issue I will have to keep pressing upon.
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Old 05-11-2014, 08:33 AM   #17
dianebrat
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There is still multiple answers from different reps about the question of whether I need to be charged a box fee for the 4 cards I am using. That is another issue I will have to keep pressing upon.
There's no question on this, you get charged per cableCARD, not for a DVR or STB that doesn't exist, in that respect VZ FiOS is pretty clear compared to cablecos.
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Old 05-12-2014, 12:42 AM   #18
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Agreed, once you get the missing box issue cleared up, you should only be charged for each cable card.
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Old 05-14-2014, 02:39 PM   #19
NJRonbo
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Just wanted to provide you helpful folks with an update....

Finally got a competent Verizon Fios rep.

He removed the box from my account. He credited me for the months I was charged for it.

Also told me that I do not need a set top box charge on my account when using just cable cards.

Finally...someone who knew what the *F* they were talking about.
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