TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Last Laugh! Sprint Finally Quits Charging Dead Man for Cell Phone

Last Laugh! Sprint Finally Quits Charging Dead Man for Cell Phone

Patrick Townson (
Fri, 02 Feb 2007 17:11:49 -0600

Sprint Stops Charging Dead Man
Apologizes for poor customer service

Posted (elsewhere) on 2007-01-30 14:29:07 by Karl tags: [Oddities] [business]

A few weeks ago we mentioned how one man was having a hell of a time
getting Sprint to stop billing his dead brother, because the release of
a death certificate had been delayed. After the story got ample press,
someone at Sprint contacted the Consumerist to apologize and quickly
resolve the issue. "I am truly sorry for the level of customer service
you experienced from our representatives," says the employee.


[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: Most of us here could have told you
that months ago, when this problem started. According to the original
article, the brother of the dead man fought with Sprint over this
issue for almost a year with dense Sprint representatives.

Similar thing happened in my case: my sister, Katharine E. Jones of
Orlando, Florida died in March, 2004. A totally, absolutely incorrect
death certificate was issued to her son (my nephew) a month later by
that county in Florida. I attempted to help my nephew Justin get a
corrected copy of the document. Orange County, Florida refused to
re-issue on their mistakes, saying we could not prove who we were, and
they wanted Katharine's _birth_ certificate -- a notarized, certified
copy yet -- to 'prove' our relationship. I contacted Chicago, where
my sister was born in a hospital which no longer exists -- Englewood
Hospital -- and was informed the government there would only issue a
birth certificate to a living parent. Dad has been dead since 1991,
and mother is still living, in the old people's home here in Independence.
I wrote a letter for mother to sign; they wanted her social security
number and a copy of _her_ birth certificate to prove who she was.
We put that all together, along with cashier's check for thirty
dollars for the 'privilege' of getting this copy, and sent it off to
the state of Illinois. It arrived back later, and we sent it to Orange
County, Florida with their requested fee to correct their original
mistakes. Finally, fifteen months after Katharine had died, been
cremated and her ashes scattered over dad's grave in Coffeyville, the
state of Florida sent the corrected copy. Of course, they blamed the
mortuary in Florida which handled the cremation, the mortuary in
turn blamed the state offices. Illinois blamed 'terrorists' and the
Homestead Security Act and the problem of identity theft. I blamed
them all as a bunch of idiots.

The brother of the Sprint customer was luckier than most: it only took
him a litttle under one year to get someone to deal with it. Personally,
I would have let it go, to collection, or wherever Sprint wanted to
send it. There are advantages, you know, to being judgment-proof and
obnoxious, to boot. When I die, I expect to be intestate; let the
creditors scream all they want. PAT]

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