1. ultraluxe's Avatar
    Ok, I have been managing my VZW bill online the same way for years. Paperless billing, and as soon as I get paid once my bill is ready to view online, I log in and pay it off. No problem.
    The last few months have been bizarre because I've added a line, switched between dumbphones and smartphones to play the eBay scramble (to upgrade, had taken out BOGO Storms with my NE2 and starting my nephew's line, but hated the Storm so returned his for a Sway and mine to a dumbphone until I got my 8330 off eBay and waiting for Niagara), and numerous times had to change plans and features to keep my nephew's usage from rivaling my mortgage payment. The last couple bills had been higher and I was expecting credits for some of the feature downgrades.
    So the bill for March's usage was only $100 for my 4 lines, and I had not yet had a normal bill to gauge what to expect. I'd been so frustrated trying to make sense of the bill lately, I made the mistake of not inspecting it. I paid off the $100 a few days after it was available. A few weeks went by and I wasn't thinking about it. I threw a birthday party for my mom and decided I'd pay my phone bill for the last half of March into April with the second paycheck of the timeframe instead of the first, and didn't log in to check the next bill. Then yesterday I got a letter in the mail saying my payment of $283 has not been received. Then I got an ominous text asking to contact Verizon's billing department. I immediately called after work and spoke to a very efficient rep who was able to get to the bottom of it. She said that a payment of $103 was made in-store and incorrectly applied to my account. When the error was caught, my account was of course billed the difference again. And that difference was now past due, and the next $180 was not late yet. She was very courteous and didn't explicitly admit any fault of Verizon but offered to extend the due date if I needed it. I guess if anything, you should always review your bill! I thought I had a pretty good system but it probably wouldn't have failed me if I had inspected the bill. I might have spent a bit less on my mom's birthday if I had known I'd have $283 coming out of this paycheck, and I feel like a loser being late with a payment.
    Oh, and the reason why the first bill wasn't lower because of the credits? My nephew downloaded $40 worth of ringtones, plus various nickel and dime charges I couldn't track online.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    04-14-09 09:54 PM
  2. TwinsX2Dad's Avatar
    Ouch - that sounds like the billing nightmare from San Francisco!

    Switching features on an account is something you want to do as infrequently as possible, as confusion is easy to come by with all of the backdating/prorating and whatnot. Toss in some unexpected extra-cost downloads and a misapplied payment and trouble will come out to bite you.

    I have a question, though - if nephew is so untrustworthy, why are you supporting his phone habit?

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    04-14-09 10:14 PM
  3. ultraluxe's Avatar
    I love him? And his mother is so screwed-up she had to pay a $400 deposit on her own line and would have to do the same to add him. Don't worry though, I'm sending her a $55 bill for his whimsies.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    04-14-09 10:20 PM
  4. TwinsX2Dad's Avatar
    I love him? And his mother is so screwed-up she had to pay a $400 deposit on her own line and would have to do the same to add him. Don't worry though, I'm sending her a $55 bill for his whimsies.
    Okay - I'll give you that. A couple things to consider: depending on his age, is a cellphone necessary? And, have you looked into the download and usage blocks that VZW offers?

    Just thoughts.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    04-14-09 10:39 PM
  5. YourMobileGuru's Avatar
    Okay - I'll give you that. A couple things to consider: depending on his age, is a cellphone necessary? And, have you looked into the download and usage blocks that VZW offers?

    Just thoughts.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    In this day in age, almost everyone has a cel, including teenagers and even some kids. The way of the world is changing. People want/need to stay connected with each other and cel phones are all about staying connected. You may not approve (I've read some of your comments in other posts) but really it's none of your business. If the OP is willing to do this and the kids mom is willing to reimburse her then that's between them.

    I do second your suggestion about the download blocks though, the are free. Only the Chaperon service costs $$$.
    04-14-09 10:52 PM
  6. TwinsX2Dad's Avatar
    In this day in age, almost everyone has a cel, including teenagers and even some kids. The way of the world is changing. People want/need to stay connected with each other and cel phones are all about staying connected. You may not approve (I've read some of your comments in other posts) but really it's none of your business. If the OP is willing to do this and the kids mom is willing to reimburse her then that's between them.

    I do second your suggestion about the download blocks though, the are free. Only the Chaperon service costs $$$.
    In this day & age, there is a lot going on that is contributing to the general decline of all around us.

    When a society starts confusing needs & wants, red flags should go up.

    It has nothing to do with gaining my approval. It has everything to do with spoiling a kid and not having any consequences when they screw up. It is called breeding entitlement

    We see it here everyday.

    My kids & grandkids have them - more for my convenience than theirs. They have strict rules as to whom they are allowed to talk to, what they are allowed to do on them and proper hours. But I can afford it and I back up my disciplinary promises. If any of them so much as texts someone not on their approved list or receives phone calls at the wrong time or downloads a single thing without permission, they know what will happen. $40 worth of downloads would cost them a phone for a very long time - not because of the cost, but because it is sound parenting.

    I can and will swallow an ETF or just lock an active phone in my safe for six months if necessary. It won't hurt me in the least.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    04-14-09 11:39 PM
  7. YourMobileGuru's Avatar
    In this day & age, there is a lot going on that is contributing to the general decline of all around us.
    It's a cel phone not a gun, settle down

    When a society starts confusing needs & wants, red flags should go up.
    Who mentioned needs of wants? I don't see that anywhere in the OP's post. She said here nephew had a phone and it was cost prohibitive for her sis to put it on her account so she agreed to do it. There was no mention as to why the kid had it, just that she did it for him.

    It has nothing to do with gaining my approval. It has everything to do with spoiling a kid and not having any consequences when they screw up. It is called breeding entitlement
    We don't know enough about the OP or her nephew and their circumstances to make any kind of judgment. You're reading into things here that are not there.

    We see it here everyday.

    My kids & grandkids have them - more for my convenience than theirs. They have strict rules as to whom they are allowed to talk to, what they are allowed to do on them and proper hours. But I can afford it and I back up my disciplinary promises. If any of them so much as texts someone not on their approved list or receives phone calls at the wrong time or downloads a single thing without permission, they know what will happen. $40 worth of downloads would cost them a phone for a very long time - not because of the cost, but because it is sound parenting.

    I can and will swallow an ETF or just lock an active phone in my safe for six months if necessary. It won't hurt me in the least.
    Oh wow, that's a bit of overkill if you ask me but it's your money. I suppose you snoop in their rooms and read their diaries or other notes when they are not looking too. I'm glad I'm not one of your kids or grand kids!
    04-14-09 11:52 PM
  8. DesertDogs's Avatar
    In this day in age, almost everyone has a cel, including teenagers and even some kids. The way of the world is changing. People want/need to stay connected with each other and cel phones are all about staying connected. You may not approve (I've read some of your comments in other posts) but really it's none of your business. If the OP is willing to do this and the kids mom is willing to reimburse her then that's between them.
    Oh wow, that's a bit of overkill if you ask me but it's your money. I suppose you snoop in their rooms and read their diaries or other notes when they are not looking too. I'm glad I'm not one of your kids or grand kids!
    Damn dude! You go into all of this because the poor guy asks a realistic question? From that you assume to judge what kind of parent he is? If he has the smarts to ask that question I can imagine he is a far better parent than most. Sure better than some of my friends parents and prolly better than you will ever be. There really are too many people here who need a life and some brains.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    04-15-09 12:42 AM
  9. TwinsX2Dad's Avatar
    It's a cel phone not a gun, settle down
    Knowing guns responsibly is far better than having a cell phone.

    Who mentioned needs of wants? I don't see that anywhere in the OP's post. She said here nephew had a phone and it was cost prohibitive for her sis to put it on her account so she agreed to do it. There was no mention as to why the kid had it, just that she did it for him.
    You went into it, based on a simple question I asked - to requote your overkill response to my simple question - "In this day in age, almost everyone has a cel, including teenagers and even some kids. The way of the world is changing. People want/need to stay connected with each other and cel phones are all about staying connected. You may not approve (I've read some of your comments in other posts) but really it's none of your business. If the OP is willing to do this and the kids mom is willing to reimburse her then that's between them." - and yes, my question was a valid one. If a nephew, not your own child or spouse is abusing a privilege, the question needs to come up. Too many people are handing kids cell phones because they think it is a necessity and often times, the person doing the bill paying cannot afford it. The question was intended to make people think - I didn't once say the OP was wrong. it was a simple question that you chose to go into a moral diatribe over,



    We don't know enough about the OP or her nephew and their circumstances to make any kind of judgment. You're reading into things here that are not there.
    Again - where was I passing judgment anywhere? I repeat my statement: "Okay - I'll give you that. A couple things to consider: depending on his age, is a cellphone necessary? And, have you looked into the download and usage blocks that VZW offers?" Note I said "a couple things to consider." I never once said it was stupid to do so nor in any manner did I degrade the OP. Instead, you chose to attack me based on a single question.


    Oh wow, that's a bit of overkill if you ask me but it's your money. I suppose you snoop in their rooms and read their diaries or other notes when they are not looking too. I'm glad I'm not one of your kids or grand kids!
    I have been a Scout Master, a children's bible study/Sunday school teacher, take all of the kids on extended camping trips in a rather large motorhome and have animals for them. All but the youngest two have been to 6 continents - the youngest are missing Asia. I have an eleven year old who can reload ammunition with the best of us and who can shoot a dollar bill at 100 yards with a 45ACP. Each of them can not only name each state capital, but can also tell you the order the states came into the Union - and they can all find Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, Lithuania and Fiji on an unlabeled map. Last summer, I put two adults and 10 children in my motorhome with me and paid for a fourteen day run through the SoCal theme parks and beaches - why? because the kids all exceled - and not all were mine.

    You have decided to tell me I am judging the OP and seem to know my parenting skills after a single qualifying question I asked - which, by the way, was asked by by Dr Phil not too long ago of a family having similar issues with bills and kids' expenses.

    If you were one of mine, you might have grown up with some manners and a bit better sense of reading comprehension.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    04-15-09 12:42 AM
  10. ultraluxe's Avatar
    Phew. Kind of abandoned this thread because it'd been hijacked by the Dr. Phil police. But anyway.
    At the time, felt no need to justify, but maybe my more recent experiences fit pretty well with the general consensus on parenting.
    I took out the acct for my nephew because he and his mother asked me to. His mother is an alcoholic and can't drive because of having 3 DUIs within 7 years. My husband and I don't live nearby, and my nephew is farmed out on the mother's friends a lot for misc rides and sleepovers. My nephew is 14 and of course most of his friends have cellphones. I think he needs one more than some of his peers anyway.
    His mother flipped out over my paltry bill for his data usage. (I have been paying his full amount as a gift and expected to keep it that way; and yes, we had discussed that any overages should not be my responsibility but that I would do my best to prevent that by monitoring his line).
    His mother "will not be upgrading his account any more" and is taking his phone away because of the ringtones etc. I have told her that with the $5/mo usage controls we shouldn't have any more surprises and he can keep his phone, be able to call her whenever, and not worry about him on it in the middle of the night. I also said that it would cost $175 to "no longer upgrade" his service. I guess she doesn't want to hear that and is ignoring me.
    I love my nephew and don't even really care about the billing discrepancy that was kind of my fault, I just want to be able to help him without being screwed over by selfish nickel-and-dime usage. He has always been a GREAT kid to us, helpful and sensible whenever we have him for a week or so. I feel bad for his situation and I know there's a lot of times that it's hard for him, dealing with peers.
    But not getting a dime from his mother is putting me in a bad situation, and usage for this month has not even been billed yet. I wouldn't have expected it before, but not having payment when I did ask makes me question what the best thing to do would be. Do I shut down the line and kiss goodbye to any effort to be helpful? Or to get even partially reimbursed for any of it (seeing how the mother was the one who decided to lock the phone away, not my choice)? I would like to just see the line being used and keep paying the bill. I don't even really care too much about the extra fees on the last bill, I just wanted to make a point while I could.
    BOTTOM LINE: Take this as a Judge Judy experience, and if you're considering adding a family member to your account and you can't be in control of all aspects, GO PREPAY!!!
    Even though it's not as cost-effective, you never know how it could turn out.

    Hope all that was basically coherent, as it was...

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    04-20-09 09:47 PM
  11. ultraluxe's Avatar
    Oh, and TwinsDad? Your parenting credentials ROCK! I am curious about the day-to-day happenings with your little militia.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    04-20-09 09:51 PM
  12. YourMobileGuru's Avatar
    You do realized that you can block downloads, internet, etc (basically making his phone for calls only) and it does not coat anything. You only need to pay of you limit the amout of KB and stuff like that.

    I would not jump the gun on paying the ETF though, my guess is the next time mom needs to get a hold of the kid and can't because he does not have his phone anymore it will likely come right back out of the safe only with STERN warnings not to do it again.

    @ TwinsX2Dad

    I'm sorry I some how managed to offend you. That was not my intent.
    04-20-09 11:21 PM
  13. iobxchick's Avatar
    Haha my Mother is on my plan. She downloaded 1 ringtone (yeah just one) and I cut her off! Meaning I went online and made sure she couldn't do it again. I love that I can block it free of charge- kind of funny I have to keep my Mom on lock down. Good luck with the youngster- I would block if I were you.
    04-21-09 09:36 PM
  14. Dave12308's Avatar
    In this day & age, there is a lot going on that is contributing to the general decline of all around us.

    When a society starts confusing needs & wants, red flags should go up.

    It has nothing to do with gaining my approval. It has everything to do with spoiling a kid and not having any consequences when they screw up. It is called breeding entitlement
    I think you are perhaps one of the wisest people on Crackberry, Sir.

    I remember being a kid, and if i'd asked my Dad for something like a cell back when I was a teen (early 90s) he'd have taken me in for a drug test to see what the **** I was smoking.....

    Of course, I also remember being disciplined when I did something wrong, unlike these kids today. And funny, I wasn't running around causing all **** to beak loose when I was a kid. ****, I was AFRIAD to cause trouble. It seems like these days, the Kids tell the Parents what to do, and a world like that scares me. It'll be like "Children of the Corn"
    04-26-09 01:32 PM
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