Class Action Certified Against DIRECTTV over Early Cancellation Fees


Los Angeles, CA: A lawsuit by DIRECT TV customers who were illegally charged "early cancellation penalties"--fees of up to $480-- has been granted "class action" status by a California court, potentially leading to millions of dollars in refunds. DIRECTTV is the largest satellite TV provider in the US with over 16 million customers and its principal place of business in located in El Segundo, CA.

The suit, filed in September 2008, was certified April 22, 2011, on behalf of DIRECTTV customers who were charged a cancellation penalty when they cancelled service. DIRECTTV applied its unlawful penalty provision to all of its customers including, in some cases, customers who terminated because the satellite equipment stopped working or they were no longer able to receive service when they moved. IN other cases DIRECTV would unilaterally extend to a consumer's "programming commitment" by a year or two if malfunctioning equipment needed to be replaced or the customer decided to upgrade receivers and then charge the fee if the customer stopped service after that. In some cases, according to the suit, DIRECTTV took the fees from their customers' bank or credit card accounts without their permission.

The lawsuit alleges that the fees are illegal under California's consumer protection laws. Certification of the class action means that all California consumers who were victimized by DIRECTTV's unlawful actions and do not choose to opt out of the action will be represented in litigation.

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Reader Comments

Posted by
Julie lInn
on
DirecTV just unlawfully took all the money I had left in my bank account for a early termination fee I did not request because I am on a payment agreement. But because my temporary disconnect shows as a disconnect they assumed I closed my account and charged me $500 plus past due. I had paid them $100 on 11/5/16 and agreed I am on a payment agreement and service restored when paid. My bill went to collections but apparently notes from a customer service are not seen in billing? I tried calling and got no where. A manager even hung up on me when I asked to speak to one. A service rep hung up on me because she wouldn't listen and I got upset at her. She just wanted to make a sale. I could hardly understand anyone either and that was frustrating as hell. Don't call then on a weekend. It goes overseas. I finally sent an online complaint to the corporate office and mentioned I was contacting the CA Attorney General to complaint as well. I sent that last night. Because of DirecTV taking all the money I had, $287.77, which part of was for my car payment, I can't make that payment in which I have never been late with before let alone not make. I have no money now. I am 68 on social security and collecting unemployment from a part-time job of 15 hours a week.

Posted by
Michael Naselli
on
I am unfortunately a Direct-TV customer.
I am writing about the class action suit. I live in Illinois, and I wanted to find out if the suit strictly applies to California customers.
I know that California consumer protection law applies, but I wasn't sure if an Illinois resident had a leg to stand on here.

Posted by
Gary Hays
on
I cancelled my account with DirecTV becasue I live in Florida where it constantly rains and I was always losing reception. Last night they took $245 from my account with no authorization to do so. I am elderly and surviving on Social Security. My next check does not come until the 13th and now, my wife and I have no way of even eating becasue of their immoral actions. I have tried and tried with customer service to the point of exhaustion, but they obviously do not care. I never even saw their agreement and certainly never signed any tyype of authorization allowing them to do this.

Posted by
Ann Gavin
on
Direct TV just charged my bank account $398.78 without my permission as I cancelled their automatic withdrawal from my account way back in November 2015. Now my bank account is in overdraft. I cancelled my service because my new landlord said according to my lease agreement, I could not have an antenna attached to the house.

Posted by
Larry Daws
on
Direct TV promised a merger of their entertainment service with my existing Century Link for broadband service. Direct TV said no cancellation fee from Century link for the PRISM entertainment system because this was a bundle with combined billing. They would take care of everything (Direct TV), just sign on the dotted line for two years. They haven't done any of that. So far it has cost me $106.00 for PRISM which I haven't used and only recently found that they had left it on.

Posted by
BIll Evans
on
I sued Direct Tv and Nationwide Collections for violations of the Fair Credit Reporting act in 2012. So far my legal bills exceed 30,000$ and I'm not in court yet. I cancelled service because they sold me a 39.00 service and tried to collect 150$+ monthly. Then refused to bill properly and charged a cancellation fee of 450$ There was no signed contract. I argued, wrote letters, and refused to pay so they turned it over to collections who also got letters and denial. They notified the credit bureaus that I had defaulted on a legitimate obligation. I sued. By the end of 2012 the account had been send, in succession, to three additional collection agencies who all, without any contact at all, put notice in the three bureaus. Had to get a judge to jump their asses on that. Damages to date exceed one hundred thousand plus legal bills. I am going to court, no settlement. The lawyers are toast

Posted by
kevin carnes
on
Hi direct TV has robbed me more than once I just found out that no payment from me has been recived at all also they are false advertisement with service they also have to many number to call regarding your acount I demand that they be investigated and have them pay all consumers who had this kind of situation of inconvenience

Posted by
kevin carnes
on
Hi direct TV has robbed me more than once I just found out that no payment from me has been recived at all also they are false advertisement with service they also have to many number to call regarding your acount I demand that they be investigated and have them pay all consumers who had this kind of situation of inconvenience

Posted by
gina sixkiller
on
I was just asking Directv when my contract ends via online support and they would not provide that information to me but instead referred me to a 1-800 number. The last 2 times I've called the date was different. one march 2015 and now august 2016. How do I break away from these leeches without getting charged?

Posted by
Karen Rose
on
I have been charged early cancellation fee's also. It is on my credit report.

Posted by
Cody Conn
on
Mr. Conn ordered Direct TV service in 2013 at an apartment he was renting. After his room mate opted out of paying for her part of the rent, Mr. Conn decided to move to a different location. Although Direct Tv advertised for their services to be moved for free, they asked a large fee in order to move the service. Mr. Conn asked them to freeze his account until he got settled and inquired about canceling the service altogether. He was never told there would be a fee/penalty for canceling his service. While checking his credit report recently, he found that Direct TV had charged a large cancellation fee which they turned over to collections unbeknownst to him. He called Direct TV and asked about the claim, but they have not been cooperative or polite.

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