In the paper “Consumers Telephone Bills” the author analyzes the situation that DWI faces. It is the refusal of the Kettles to pay up delinquent amounts on their phone bill, on the grounds that they did not authorize such charges. The Federal Commission has provided information to consumers…
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Therefore, the Kettles may be able to contest this bill. When a subscriber is billed for calls that he or she did not make, then it is the telephone company (in this case DWI) that will have to absorb the cost of these calls. However, there are also some aspects working in favor of DWI. The Wireless Telephone Protection Act has been signed into law on April 24, 1998 (Public Law 105-172) and the FCC has highlighted the losses to telephone companies arising out of cellular fraud (FCC Report, March 1999). In this instance, although the payments are being collected by DWI, it is actually due to a third party to which DWI has legal obligations by virtue of its contract with the business entity (the dating hotline). Therefore, this scenario also raises the prospect of further losses to DWI through its liability to the third party provider of services. However, there are also certain obligations that are placed upon customers. (a) They can request the facility of “blocking” 900 calls from their telephone for a reasonable fee, which the Kettles did not do (b) Any discrepancies in the bill are to be notified to the telephone company within 60 days by the consumer, failing which the customer will be deemed to have accepted those bills. Therefore, in this case, since the account is already delinquent without the Kettles having indicated to DWI that they contest certain charges, the legal position will be that they have accepted those charges and will therefore be obliged to pay them
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