State News

AT&T settles “cramming” case for $105 million

By Hilary Niles,

About 45,000 Vermonters stand to collect roughly $1 million from a national settlement with AT&T Mobility. The $105-million deal settles allegations that the company improperly charged customers for services they had not authorized.

Known as “cramming,” the practice entails third-party companies signing up accounts for text-message services ranging from celebrity gossip to flirting tips to trivia notes, according to the Federal Trade Commission. The account holders are not aware they have been subscribed. AT&T Mobility gets a kickback—35 percent or more—for the charges, which typically hover around $10 per month.

The total settlement will be split among consumers ($80 million), states ($20 million) and the Federal Communications Commission ($5 million).

Vermont Attorney General Bill Sorrell traveled to Washington, D.C., Wednesday Oct. 8 to attend the settlement announcement in person. As the lead state in the consumer protection action, Vermont will receive an additional $1.61 million for its role.

AT&T Mobility is the first mobile telephone provider to enter into a national settlement to resolve allegations regarding cramming, according to a press release.

Vermonters can submit claims online. If consumers are unsure whether they are eligible for a refund, they can contact the claims administrator at 1-877-819-9692.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Mountain Times Newsletter

Sign up below to receive the weekly newsletter, which also includes top trending stories and what all the locals are talking about!