WARNING.Tivo adds you to a commitment without telling its customers.

Discussion in 'TiVo Help Center' started by bed, Dec 18, 2008.

  1. bed

    bed New Member

    Dec 18, 2008


    This is just to warn others. I have been a tivo customer for 5 years and my account a has always been in good standing.2 months ago I contacted them to update my credit card on my account.This week I went to cancel my service because I got D_____ tv with a dvr.When I called tivo cust.support they told me that when I updated my CC on my account they automatically signed me up for a 1 year commitment without telling me.I spoke with a supervisor who told me the only way to cancel was to pay a 200.00 cancelation fee.THIS IS CRAZY!He told me its in their policy and He cant do anything.Any one else run into this and did you have any remidies.Thanks:mad:
  2. newskilz

    newskilz New Member

    Jul 11, 2008
    Not sure as I can help you any. But this does sound very unusual for TiVo. Just curious, did you get a discounted price when they signed you up for a year; as in you have been paying less than the standard $12.95/month? I think, then they obviously signed you up for a year contract. Why they did this? I have no idea. Not that it probably helps now, but did they record your conversation when you updated the CC info (you know for quality assurance) they may be able to find that for you.

    Seems odd, especially if there was no mention at all of saving you money or putting you on a contract. Perhaps one of several TiVo people who frequent this site might be able help you by knowing the whole story. 'TiVoJerry' is one of them, you might try sending him a short PM with your problem, though I think he's "out" until after the new year, and he does receive a lot of PM's from my understanding. But if he can, he will help. Others on here can back that up. Whether he can fix your problem, I can't promise for him. Hope you can get this straightened out.
  3. jeepguy_1980

    jeepguy_1980 Unregistered User

    Mar 1, 2008
    They can't give you a bad credit rating, so get a disposable credit card. Put $12.00 on it. Tell them you are "updating" your credit card info. Then when the next month comes around they wont get any money out of the card and they won't be able to charge you a cancellation fee.
  4. lafos

    lafos Well-Known Member

    Nov 7, 2004
    Sioux Falls, SD
    I've updated my credit card on-line and didn't run into this. But two of my boxes already had time commitments.
  5. lew

    lew Well-Known Member

    Mar 12, 2002


    Bad advice, Horrible advice It doesn't solve the problem. Does nothing to prevent tivo from charging your original credit card, taking other actions to charge the OP or giving a bad credit rating.

    The OP would be better served solving the issue with tivo, or doing a credit card charge back and let tivo document the comittment with the credit card company.
  6. gastrof

    gastrof Hubcaps r in fashion

    Oct 31, 2003
    Potato and pen.

    "Warn" is spelled with an "a".
  7. jeepguy_1980

    jeepguy_1980 Unregistered User

    Mar 1, 2008
    They wouldn't be able to charge your other credit card, b/c they would no longer have the authorization to do so. They don't have your SSN so how can they hurt your credit rating?

    Edit: You're probably right. Their policy states that they will use a collection service, which may be able to hurt your credit.
  8. lew

    lew Well-Known Member

    Mar 12, 2002

    I'm not going to take the time to read all the fine print but I don't think changing your credit card removes the authorization to use your first card, if your new card isn't accepted.

    You already got the second point, tivo can send the account to collections.

    The OP has to take the time to solve the problem. It's possible the customer got a month or two free service, or a couple of free Amazon D/Ls in exchange for an annual comittment. Even then I'd complain to the extent the termination fee exceeded the value of free service or free movies.
  9. bed

    bed New Member

    Dec 18, 2008
    Thanks for all the replies.I am paying full price and received nothing free for the commitment.They never told me I was entering a commitment until I tried to cancel.I am in the process of contacting corp.headcorders of tivo to resolve this.Will update on the responce from corp .Thanks
  10. newskilz

    newskilz New Member

    Jul 11, 2008
    That is very odd indeed. A commitment with no monetary benefit? Didn't know they were ever doing that (ok Bob, we signed you up for a year of service just because we wanted to, not because you get a discount of any kind. Definitely sounds like a glitch of some sort... computers, can't always trust them huh?
  11. jrm01

    jrm01 New Member

    Oct 17, 2003
    Actually all TiVo Service Contract have a minimum one year commitment, even the $12.95 monthly plan. However, that commitment should not have been started all over just by changing the credit card number.

    I would call TiVo back (on Monday) and see if you get a different person with a different story.
  12. jjberger2134

    jjberger2134 Member

    Nov 19, 2002
    I agree, that an updated CC should not create a new 1 year term. With that said, the original rep must not know what he is talking about. B/C, if you are on a NEW one year contract (for some strange reason) the cancellation fee in your case should be around $129.50 (12.95 * 10) based on the Service Agreement (Item 5 of the attached link) and the fact that you should have about 10 months left on your contract (you said you updated the cc info about 2 months ago). You stated the original TiVo rep said the cancel fee would be $200. :confused:

    My advice, call TiVo back and try a different rep, and find out WHY you were put on a new service plan. Then escalate the call. If that does not work, then absolutely try PM'ing TiVoJerry.

  13. RetentionSquadIN

    RetentionSquadIN TiVo Retention Squad

    Dec 19, 2008
    New Albany,...
    Updating your cc info will not renew your commitment. JJ was right the max ETF on a monthly is like 15x.40. TiVo policy is $200 or the remaining months of the contract, wich ever one is cheaper.
  14. Adam1115

    Adam1115 Well-Known Member

    Dec 15, 2003
    Denver ish
    Call them back, ask for a supervisor, tell them you did NOT renew your subscription, you did NOT authorize the charges, and you will NOT pay for them, and demand they remove them immediately.

    If they refuse, contact your credit card company and disput the charges as unauthorized, the burden of proof will be on TiVo.

    If they won't take care of it, I would open a BBB complaint. For me, that's been successful at cutting through the 'front line' csr's and getting someone who can actually take care of it to look at it...

    They can't report incorrect information to the credit bureaus. If this happens, write a simple letter to both the collection agancy and the credit reporting agency telling them this was an unauthorized charge that you despute, and demand they remove it immediately.
  15. sundevil98

    sundevil98 New Member

    Nov 3, 2003
    I am in the same boat as OP...

    However, my situation MAY be different.

    I recently moved from MI to TX. During the process of moving, I changed banks and debit cards... Old card (linked to TIVO) account got cancelled. Tivo service was shut off and a few months went by before I noticed/cared. I called Tivo to give them my new account number when I started watching TV again.

    Apparently, at that time I entered into a service "commitment". I use the term commitment loosely. I gave them my new number to authorize charges to, so I could re-instate my service. (I should point out I bought my TiVo ~ 2 years ago at a discounted price with a 2 year commitment at $12.95 a month - which I gladly paid, and enjoyed the service... Those two years were up around the time I moved, and changed my billing information).

    I was unaware that I entered into this new 1-year "commitment". I was unaware that if I decided to leave the said "commitment" that I could surely cancel the service, but would be charged a $150 "early termination fee".

    Last month, I moved again. I'm without TV service for the first time in years. I don't want/need TV... Nor do I need my Tivo anymore. I called today to cancel my service. I talked with a customer service rep, and she looked up my account history, which has been good, and saw where I changed my billing info. She said that it appeared to her that I entered this "commitment" at that time. I told her I had no recollection of entering a 1-year commitment. She put me on hold and connected me with Lisa, the Retention Supervisor.

    I talked with Lisa for approximately a half hour. She explained to me that when my account went without payment for 30 days, that my original service agreement was cancelled. When I called to re-instate my service, is when I entered into this new service "commitment".

    I asked Lisa for proof of my "commitment" as to me, this commitment seems rather one-sided. She said that it happened electronically, so there is no proof... Basically, because I receive the service from Tivo, I agreed to the "commitment".

    My problem with this situation are thus:
    1) Tivo is the Judge and Jury as to who entered a "commitment".
    2) There is no physical proof that I, a Tivo user, entered into this "commitment"
    3) If giving my new billing information is my "acceptance" of this "commitment" I was un aware.
    4) I never received the "commitment" that I "accepted".

    This was all done over the phone. I have no recollection of either entering into a 1 year agreement, nor do I have any recollection of agreeing to pay an early termination fee if I decided (which I have now done) to end the "commitment".

    I was also told by Lisa to go to the Tivo.com webpage and click on the "contact us" link. From there, she recommended that I contact Corporate headquarters. I asked Lisa who specifically I could contact at Corporate HQ... and she was unable to provide me with a name, e-mail address, or phone number.

    When I logged into tivo.com and clicked on contact us. I found the number for the California corporate headquarters. Upon calling, I received the message that I needed to enter the last name of the person that I was trying to contact. I got nowhere fast, since Lisa was unable to provide any names of individuals who could help me. Lisa could not even provide me with the name of her immediate supervisor (who was unable to talk to me directly on the phone.).

    I called back again, and spoke with another customer service representative (Rena). She was friendly, and appologetic about my situation. I asked her to talk to Lisa again. She came back and said that Lisa was "in a meeting". She also explained that was the reason why I couldn't talk to anyone at corporate as well. They were apparently all in the same meeting (yeah, right!).

    Anyway, I contacted the other people on the "contact us page" who had first and last names. I explained that I was unhappy with this situation. I left them all my contact information. I also explained to them that Lisa had sent me to the contact page, and they were the only people that I could find to contact regarding this situation. As far as I can tell, they're the only people at Tivo who have a first and last name.

    I'll be watching this thread...

    I assume that we are not the only ones who entered into this "commitment" without our knowledge.

    I think there are going to be a LOT of unhappy Tivo customers out there who are in the same situation.

    I plan on e-mailing the links on the "Contact Us" page. If I continue to get no response, I'm contacting my Attorney General's office, Better Business Bureau, and whoever else I can think of. {edit} After reading the above post, contacting my credit card company is a good idea as well. Burden of proof is on Tivo... I can't imagine how they will come up with any documentation or other proof that I ever agreed to this "commitment".{/edit}

    I suggest that others do the same.
  16. bradleys

    bradleys It'll be fine....

    Oct 31, 2007
    The OP's situation is slightly different then Sunds.

    OP - I would call back and try to work it out with them. Indicate that you did not agree to a new contract period, request proof that it was explained or documented clearly that changing a credit card would initiate a new committment period.

    If neither can be provided - indicate that you will be filing a protest with your credit card company.

    This is very common with Cell Phone company's, the procedures are very well documented.
  17. computerdude1032

    computerdude1032 New Member

    Dec 25, 2008
    I would go ahead and just call the credit card company right away. Often times when you initiate a chargeback on your credit card, they will setup a 3 way call between yourself, the company (Tivo), and the credit card company where things can hopefully be worked out without the CC company actually needing to do a chargeback... So in other words, the CC company will have the name and number of somebody at Tivo who is responsible for credit cards, and can hopefully help you out.

    To me, this would be easier than messing around trying to find somebody's last name by yourself.
  18. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

    Jan 2, 2004
    yep = your situation is different. Since service dropped for more than 30 days you started new service and all TOS documents clearly state that nay service gets a minimum 12 month commitment period. The only thing TiVo did wrong was to not reiterate that to you on the phone

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