Three Companies to Refund Consumers For Phone Bill 'Cramming'


Three companies in three states have agreed to pay consumers back for what amounts to years of unwanted, unauthorized charges on their local phone bills, a practice commonly called "cramming." In some cases, the charges had nothing to do with using the phone.

The companies agreed to refund a total of nearly $250,000 to more than 1,700 Vermont customers and businesses, and to each pay $10,000 in fines to the state.

Between 2005 and 2010, customers found charges on their bills for voice mail services about which they were not notified, and online business-directory listings for which they did not know they were paying, according to the office of William Sorrell, Vermont's attorney general.

Originally published