Cramming it Back Down Their Throats: An AT&T Story


AT&T recently settled a lawsuit filed by the Federal Trade Commission as well as federal and state entities regarding the deceptive practice of “cramming” consumers who had mobile phone service with AT&T.  The whopping $105 million settlement is the largest settlement ever with a mobile phone carrier.

According to the FTC, AT&T Mobility, LLC allegedly charged consumers’ mobile phone bills for third-party subscriptions or services that they never ordered or authorized. Many consumers weren’t aware they had been paying — up to $9.99 per month — for seemingly random horoscope text messages, flirting tips, celebrity gossip, wallpaper or ringtones that showed up on their phones.”

No cramming!   Read the FTC press release here.  The FTC press release provides a replica of an actual AT&T bill that hid the unauthorized charges.  Pretty slick but it cost the company dearly.

If you were an AT&T customer click here to see if you are entitled to make a claim for a refund.  Moral of the story: play by the rules and be fair or else you may be get a megadose of payback.

It’s That Time Again..UNCG Homecoming!


Homecoming is coming…..October 27th thru November 4.  Check the event schedule, make your travel/lodging plans, and go back to your alma mater.  While there be sure to interact with current Spartan students and share your memories, experiences, and wisdom. And note that you can learn some things from these talented Spartans too—a true win-win situation.

UNCG Homecoming 2014 And spread the word about Homecoming via your use of social media.  Hashtag for the big Spartan event is #uncgHC14.

Nothing like a Spartan party.  North Carolina A&T State University’s homecoming may be billed as “The Greatest Homecoming on Earth” but UNCG homecoming is a unique event with its own charm and sense of purpose. Take part and show your Spartan pride…..and Aggies (and others) are welcome to attend too.  Go Spartans!

ENC: Call on Me!


Many of you know that I am originally from New Bern, North Carolina.  I love Eastern North Carolina and still have plenty of family and friends who live in this wonderful area of the state.  Eastern North Carolina spans a wide territory which seems to be generally defined as all points east of the Raleigh/Triangle area—a large territory indeed.  The two main area codes for Eastern North Carolina are 252 and 910 but 919 stretches into the ENC region as well.

The 252 area code spans (more…)

Consumer Clarified: Thanks to Our Court of Appeals


In a recent opinion by the North Carolina Court of Appeals, a 3-0 panel held the definition of the term “consumer” under the North Carolina Debt Collection Act (N.C.G.S. 75-50 et seq.) includes persons who are alleged to owe debts.  In Green Tree Servicing LLC v. Locklear two members of a Robeson County family held interest in a manufactured home and became behind in their payments.  The creditor began a campaign of harassing phone calls and threats and questionable (to say the least) communication with the family members which led to litigation and counterclaims.  (more…)

Debt Collection A to Z: J is for Judgment


Debt collectors and creditors love judgments.  Not as much as they love money but pretty close.  Judgments can be the final chapter of a long tussle to get a debtor to pay on a debt.  Judgments provide debt collectors and creditors with some leverage and additional remedies.  Consequently judgments usually mean the closing of many doors for debtors.

If you owe on a debt and are sued you should immediately (more…)

Score Update: North Carolina Voters Win, 2-1


In what can be considered a victory for voting rights and common sense, the U. S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit struck down recent North Carolina legislative changes prohibiting same-day voting and voters voting outside of their districts on Election Day—2 wins.  The one loss was the Court’s decision to (more…)

Lawyer Treating You Right? and.. Are You Treating Your Lawyer Right?


If you have a lawyer-on-call or are in the midst of legal representation you should be familiar with the attorney-client relationship.  It is obviously a very important brief info for your briefcase arrangement which often embraces some of the most important matters in one’s life.  Wrongful death, serious personal injury, divorce, bankruptcy, workers’ compensation……….to name a few.

Over the course of life many people have the need to consult and engage a lawyer.  If you hire a lawyer you should be mindful it is a two-way street and be sure your lawyer is giving you what you need (not what you want; the two are NOT always the same) while you provide the resources and assistance needed for your case.  For a six-point checklist on your relationship with your lawyer click here.

If you are in need of legal services in any of my areas of practice please contact me at your convenience.  I am glad to consult with you and help you determine whether I can help you.  Best wishes to you and yours………….and thanks for a few moments of your time.

How to Determine if You Have a Valid Used Car Case


Weekly and virtually daily I receive phone calls and emails from consumers who have problems with vehicles they purchased.  Most of them purchase a used vehicle and do little, if any, inspection or investigation on the vehicle and instead place a significant amount of trust in what the dealer/seller says about the vehicle’s history and condition.  As you can imagine this “I trust you” approach frequently results in problems—mainly for the buyer.

If you or someone you know has a problem with a used vehicle (more…)

Weekend Recap


Weekend recap…..I get to see my Pittsburgh Steelers beat the Carolina Panthers (thanks Rashad Blossom!)…my Washington Nationals are champs of the National League East and headed to the MLB playoffs…..my UNC Tar Heels give up 70 points and lose to ECU.

And I was able to get in two rounds of golf, one with a good buddy of mine from New Bern High School (Joseph George). I am richly blessed in many ways. Weekend over….now it’s back to work for my clients. I have wish you all a great week and a stellar upcoming weekend.