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Nationwide Class Action Lawsuit Filed Against Charter Claiming False Advertising, Deficient Equipment

Phillip Dampier April 3, 2017 Broadband Speed, Charter Spectrum, Consumer News 6 Comments

Charter Communications is facing a second lawsuit related to false advertising about its ability to provide fast internet service and allegations the company knowingly supplied customers with deficient equipment.

Hart et al. v. Charter Communications Inc., is seeking certification as a nationwide class action from a judge in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.

The suit claims that Charter’s subsidiary Time Warner Cable purposely leased out modems and wireless routers it knew were incapable of achieving Time Warner Cable Maxx broadband speeds, consistently oversold its broadband network — resulting in slower internet speeds and performance than the company advertised, and raised customers’ bills without adequate notice.

The California lawsuit closely mirrors one filed in February by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, and focuses on similar claims that Charter is engaged in “false representations and other wrongful business practices.”

The complaint claims:

  • The company willfully and intentionally advertised internet service it could not provide, claiming customers would receive internet service that was “fast” with “no buffering,” “no slowdowns,” “no lag,” “without interruptions,” “without downtime,” and “without the wait.”
  • Charter leased older generation modems and wireless routers to many of their customers that were incapable of supporting the promised internet speeds. Older technology modems could not provide the full benefit of Time Warner Cable Maxx speeds of 100-300Mbps, and company-provided network gateways delivered Wi-Fi service at speeds considerably lower than advertised.
  • Charter regularly failed to manage their network in a manner that would give customers consistent broadband speeds. Instead, “Defendants included too many subscribers in the same service group and provided too few channels for such subscriber, thus causing an internet ‘traffic jam’ (particularly during peak hours) that slowed every subscriber’s connection to speeds substantially below what was promised and paid-for. Indeed, even when consumers resorted to using wired connections, their Internet speeds still fell short of the promised speeds.”
  • Defendants also have adopted an unlawful and unfair practice of adding new fees or other charges to consumers’ bills without adequate notice and outside of the terms promised upon sign-up. In 2016, one customer signed up for a promotional “Spectrum Internet with Wi-Fi” plan with a fixed rate of $64.99 and a $10.00 “Promotional Discount,” making her plan cost a total of $54.99 per month. This amount was reflected in her February 2017 bill. However, on her March 2017 bill, the customer was automatically charged $59.99, a $5.00 increase of which she was not given adequate notice and which was improperly charged to her credit card automatically.

The lawyers bringing the case propose to include as class members anyone who purchased internet service from Time Warner Cable/Charter Communications nationwide, those who believed the company’s advertising that claimed speeds were fast and reliable, and customers enrolled in auto-pay who were not properly informed of changes in price or the terms of service. If certified, the potential size of the class action case could involve millions of customers.

Currently there are 6 comments on this Article:

  1. dev dugal says:

    how does one take part in the lawsuit? i was baited and switched without my knowing. complete fraud.

    • Julia says:

      Dev,

      Are you in NY? I know of a company called SendDavid who can help you demand a refund if you were billed more than you were expecting. You could also submit a FCC Complaint through them. Here’s a link: http://bit.ly/2oX8VmU

      Hope this helps!

      Julia

      • dev dugal says:

        i’m in california. is there only a class action in NY or is there one nationwide?

        • Julia says:

          The recent class action is in California, and the one from February is in NY. As of now there is no nationwide lawsuit. David only works in NY for the moment 🙁

  2. Bobby says:

    Spectrum sucks ass. With the switch from TWC our total bill has gone up nearly double. The TV is what is killing us, we needed to upgrade to a higher priced “Tier” to get the same channels that we had with our TWC service months prior. Complete bulls**t.

  3. Gina says:

    I live in WI and because I have been a loyal customer for over 35 years to TW now that they became Spectrum I have been issued equipment that continues pixeling on my TV’s modems that do not update, and I over the last 6 mos have had tech out here to swap equipment and also pixeling issues…I have been told that the modem had not updated , had boot file issues and was not working and called the next day to see if they were fixed. With TW I never had to call in for tech support once in almost 35 yrs…that issue was due to a faulty American receiver and they had the issue fixed. TW was great Spectrum NOT GOOD…

    They were however the TV was found to have the 6 dvr recorder was showing correctibles as they call it, which is the box trying to fill in the blocks for information causing the pixelation issues….
    I never had to call with TW and when I did the issue was fixed by phone.

    Now it’s been every week, I never got the discounts until a year later as it took 30 hours of talking to spectrum to get my service switched over and now find out they use all the crappy boxes TW and refurbished them which do not work with your TV’s.

    Spectrum says it does not charge for service calls yet now I get a letter from them stating that they will charge me to have a tech come out for their equipment issues….???

    Can we get a Class action suit against Spectrum in the midwest going please? People i KNOW are leaving them left and right, they are going to Digital or Uverse
    Or sling TV and hulu and Roku….Spectrum has lost over 100,000 customers in less than 6 mos and have had over 7,000 complaints against them including 400 from their own employees!!!

    Please contact me to see if we can get a class action suit started in the WI midwest area for false accusations and faulty equipment, customer service that does not know what to do and gives you pricing at different prices..My g/f was told 3 different prices and when she called to install the gave her the highest prices and she said no and gave them the price they quoted her…she went to AT&T .

    I live in an apt complex and daily there are people leaving Spectrum and going to AT&T Uverse and Direct TV , Sling…my friends have Direct TV here and no issues not compared to Spectrum.
    HELP EVERYONE LETS DO THIS!!

    SPECTRUMS NEW COMMERCIALS SHOULD SAY DIRECT TV BAD SPECTRUM WORSE
    OR AT&T BAD SPECTRUM WORSE….!!

    Gina







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