New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs Announce Settlement with Verizon Regarding Company’s Marketing and Sales of Fios Services

 Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin and the Division of Consumer Affairs (“Division”) announced today that Verizon New Jersey, Inc. (“Verizon”) finalized a settlement agreement resolving the Division’s investigation into whether the company violated New Jersey’s consumer protection laws in connection with the marketing and sale of its Fios services.

Under the terms of the settlement, Verizon agreed to pay $175,000 to the State to resolve allegations that, among other things, the company failed to honor advertised prices for service, failed to deliver promotional gifts, failed to provide promised refunds, and engaged in other unlawful business practices.

“When companies make promises to consumers, whether through advertisements, sales pitches, or other means, they are required by law to make good on those promises,” said Attorney General Platkin. “We will not allow companies to lure New Jersey consumers in with promotional pricing, gift incentives, or other enticements and then fail to deliver.”

“If you’re doing business in New Jersey, you must comply with the laws and regulations that protect our consumers against deceptive sales and advertising practices,” said Cari Fais, Acting Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs. “The settlement announced today holds Verizon accountable for its alleged violations of the law and requires the company to satisfactorily resolve existing complaints from affected New Jersey consumers and promptly address future complaints.”

The Division opened the investigation into the Basking Ridge-based telecommunications company in response to a high volume of complaints from New Jersey consumers regarding the company’s business practices.

The State alleges that Verizon, among other practices:

  • charged consumers more for services than the advertised price;
  • failed to honor all cancellation requests that comply with Verizon’s cancellation policy in a timely manner;
  • failed to provide refunds to New Jersey consumers who were entitled to such refunds;
  • automatically renewed consumers’ contracts without the consumers’ consent;
  • failed to provide consumers with advertised Verizon promotional gifts; and
  • failed to clearly and conspicuously disclose the limited supply of advertised Verizon promotional gifts.

Verizon has denied the allegations. The Division reminds consumers to read contracts and disclosures before agreeing to promotional offers.

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