Our company contacts to the rescue, again!

Peter Roithmayr bought his wife a new phone for her birthday. It was an excellent gift, but apparently not good enough, at least according to her wireless carrier.

“While she was at an AT&T store backing up her phone, a salesman kept pitching her on various services,” he says. “Finally, he got her to buy a multidevice protection plan, which she was told would provide protection for up to five devices.”

Since the family did indeed have multiple devices, that seemed like a reasonable addition to their plan. And one that would come in handy when their daughter, who was in Germany for a semester abroad, dropped her phone in the airport and cracked the screen.

Or so they thought.

“I called AT&T and attempted to use the service to get the phone fixed,” explains Roithmayr. “But instead of talking with an AT&T representative, I was transferred to a completely different company called Asurion Protection Services, and told that since we were a loyal customer, we were entitled to a 25-percent reduction of the deductible. We were never told anything about a deductible when we signed up for the plan.”

The bottom line is this “other” company wanted $168 to replace the phone, or $89 to get the cracked screen repaired.

And so Roithmayr reached out to our advocates for help.

But that’s not all he did.

At the same time, he was also searching our AT&T executive contact list at Elliott.org and sent an email to the names he found there.

“I’ll bet it wasn’t even two hours after I sent them the email and I got a call from a woman from their corporate offices in Seattle,” he reports. “I was overwhelmed by how nice they were, and how easily they made the whole problem go away. They canceled the insurance, rebated what we’d already paid, and by two o’clock that afternoon we were in an AT&T store and my daughter had a brand new iPhone 7.”

Related story:   His AT&T phone isn't insured, after all

Now that’s the kind of fast resolution we hope lots of folks get from our advocacy website.

We’re always here to help if you need us, but often the most powerful problem solving advocate is you, especially when you’re armed with the right tools.

That’s where this site comes in handy. Look up. See that “contacts” link at the top of the page? That’ll take you to a list of executive contacts for everything from airlines to utility companies.

There, too, you’ll find a link to our forums, where you can post your problem. The forums are regularly monitored, not only by our advocates but also by industry executives and other travel experts, who can often provide valuable insights into how best to resolve you problem.

And you’ll find more answers in our frequently asked questions section.

Our advocates love reading stories like Roithmayr’s. He used the tools at his disposal to help himself — the perfect outcome.

If you have a similar story to share, please let us know.

So grab the tools that you need and start advocating. If you need us, we’ve got your back.

Dale Irvin

Dale Irvin is a semi-retired writer and editor, now living in south Florida after three years roaming around North America in an RV. You can read about those adventures at fabulousfifthwheel.com.

  • cscasi

    This was handled well by the AT&T executive office once it was made aware of the issue. Why? Perhaps AT&T has has previous issues with the “third party” contractor handling the claims and or perhaps it was realized that the training of sales associates did not cover enough of the aspects of the multidevice protection plan to properly explain exactly what the plan covered and about the deductibles. I personally hate most “third party” plans. I would rather the company who sold me the product cover it under its own plan. That way a person only has one company to deal with and I have found (by personal experience) that claims are handled better.
    I am pleased that the Roithmyars got more than they expected when AT&T canceled the plan, rebated the money they had paid for it and even gave their daughter a brand new Apple iPhone 7, rather than just fixing the one she dropped.

  • JewelEyed

    If their training really isn’t sufficient for this, they ought to do something about that. Better training and including a plain English handout created to provide to the customer who is making the decision. Preferably one that is marked at the bottom so that it is clear that corporate is responsible for whatever it says.

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