Arkansans join thousands of complaints regarding AT&T, DirecTV overcharging customers

Sen. Rapert calls for investigation after AT&T, DirecTV complaints

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - A recent investigation by CBS News found over 4,200 complaints lodged against AT&T and DirecTV regarding their deals, promotions, and overcharging in the past couple years.

When we posted the story to our Facebook page, over 1,200 comments were made. Several of our viewers complained of similar problems with bundling their AT&T services with DirecTV. Bry Baker said his bill was supposed to increase to $250 a month after an initial 12-month promotional period, but his prices skyrocketed soon after he bundled his service together.

"It constantly has gone up and up until it went up to over $300 and this was before the promo ended," he said.

Amber Cifaldi said she spent 12 hours on the phone trying to correct the issue, but was only told "something completely different" with each phone call and that her issue is still unresolved.

State Senator Jason Rapert was another person who said he too has had problems after bundling the services together. On Facebook, Rapert said he is going to investigate the issue and "have a hearing in the Arkansas Senate Insurance and Commerce Committee."

"I had, just literally before you ran the story on KTHV, had actually talked with an AT&T official about my own personal bill with AT&T," he said in an interview. "I had already considered having AT&T come and talk to our committee about the situation."

But can the Arkansas legislature really do anything about the price increase and complaints? The state senator said the state has some options.

"That's actually part of our jurisdiction, part of the coverage that we do for the people of Arkansas. So, what I'd like to do is have them come and talk to us about this, because when I see over 4,000 complaints, which you had in that report, it makes me think there's a more widespread problem out there,” he explained.

Rapert encouraged anyone with legitimate billing concerns regarding AT&T, DirecTV, or any other company to call the Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division. That way they can keep track of concerns in the state.

The Attorney General's office said they can't confirm whether or not they are currently investigating AT&T or DirecTV, but said they've received hundreds of complaints about the companies.

There were 488 complaints against DirecTV before AT&T merger and 45 since. AT&T has had 309 complaints against the wireline (cable and internet) and 59 complaints against AT&T Wireless. (These numbers are since 2011.)

If you wish to contact the Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division, please call 1-800-482-8982 or emailing consumer@ArkansasAG.gov. You can also file a consumer complaint online by clicking here.

© 2017 KTHV-TV


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