NYC Sues T-Mobile Over Deceptive Sales Practices
New York City has filed a lawsuit against T-Mobile on Wednesday. The city is accusing one of the largest mobile phone companies of engaging in “rampant” sales abuses of customers for its lower-priced, prepaid wireless brand, Metro by T-Mobile.
The complaint filed with the state supreme court in Manhattan,claims more than 2,200 violations by T-Mobile. The “pervasive” illegal activity spanned 56 Metro stores in all five boroughs, including authorized dealers and stores run by its MetroPCS NY unit. New York City said it had evidence that many Metro stores sold used or reconditioned phones as new, and charged taxes that were excessive or appeared to be “made up,” including “device change taxes” and “device activation taxes.”
The lawsuit also claims that T-Mobile has partnered with third parties to enroll unsuspecting consumers in expensive financing plans without their consent.
Reuters cited one example in which a woman thought she had bought a phone advertised at $599 from a Bronx dealer, only to learn later that she had signed up for a 12-month lease costing $2,191.30.
The “30 day guarantee” advertised by Metro by T-Mobile was also deceptive. The fine print said the guarantee was just seven days and covered only a “small sub-category” of transactions.