How To Get Out of the Verizon Wireless Early Termination Fee

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I recently bought an iPhone and decided to cancel my Verizon wireless service. When I called verizon to terminate they informed me they would charge me for the remainder of my month under contract (30 days) as well as a $90 pro rated early termination fee. I have been a customer with Verizon for over 8 years and was quite perturbed at the cancellation fees they wanted to charge me.

Federal regulations require cellphone carriers to allow you cancel your wireless service if there is a rate change within 60 days. Use this to your advantage and tell the customer service reps you wish to cancel your cell phone contract.

All you need to do is call Verizon Wireless and tell them you wish to terminate your plan because they raised sms rates. I did this by email. It took 3 emails, each one politely explaining the fee increase and copying their terms of service in each email.

Verizon Wireless Terms of Service

Our Rights To Make Changes Your service is subject to our business policies, practices, and procedures, which we can change without notice. UNLESS OTHERWISE PROHIBITED BY LAW, WE CAN ALSO CHANGE PRICES AND ANY OTHER CONDITIONS IN THIS AGREEMENT AT ANY TIME BY SENDING YOU WRITTEN NOTICE PRIOR TO THE BILLING PERIOD IN WHICH THE CHANGES WOULD GO INTO EFFECT. IF YOU CHOOSE TO USE YOUR SERVICE AFTER THAT POINT, YOU’RE ACCEPTING THE CHANGES. IF THE CHANGES HAVE A MATERIAL ADVERSE EFFECT ON YOU, HOWEVER, YOU CAN END THE AFFECTED SERVICE, WITHOUT ANY EARLY TERMINATION FEE, JUST BY CALLING US WITHIN 60 DAYS AFTER WE SEND NOTICE OF THE CHANGE.

In the 3rd email I requested my case be escalated to a senior customer support representative, and that evening a Verizon rep called me to tell me they were releasing me from my contract effective immediately.

THIS WORKS even if you do not have a text message plan.

I am now with ATT Wireless and they are better than I expected. They offered me a free ringtone for signing up for their web based account management, and when they informed me that the offer was not good on an iPhone, they credited my bill $1.98.

So far AT&T customer service has been good, the website works well (much better than Verizon’s) and the cellphone coverage is better.

Verizon has a serious case of iPhone envy and they are not surprisingly loosing scads of customers to AT&T Wireless. I’m happy with my iPhone and happy with the network provider.

I thought the FCC was a meaningless organization run by telco lobbyists, but this is one telecommunications law that actually serves the people, not corporations.

Verizon wireless increased sms text message fees last may, and are increasing sms fees from 3rd party providers. The new fee increase is $.03 and will be applied to MT (mobile terminated) messages processed on its network beginning Nov. 1. MT messages are sent by mobile web service providers including Google, ESPN, ChaCha, Cellfire, CNN and some financial institutions. MT messages include interactive voting notifications, text alerts, and SMS search results.

verizon text notice
The fee is in addition to current MT-messaging fees, which typically cost the sender anywhere from a fraction of a penny to a few cents.

Consumerist has more tips on how to get out of your Verizon Wireless cellphone contract.

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15 Responses to “How To Get Out of the Verizon Wireless Early Termination Fee”

  1. Barrett Velez Says:

    Sounds good, but are we looking at say $10 + fees = $30 ?

  2. ChidNAi Says:

    Apple iPhone 5 Specification and Release Date will allow app developers to reach a new audience.

  3. ChidNAi Says:

    Apple iPhone 5 Specification and Release Date.

  4. Chris Says:

    Apple iPhone 5 will be released at the end of June 2011 as usual in WWDC 2011 in San Francisco.

  5. ChidNAi Says:

    So I bit the bullet and got an iPhone 4, hopefully there won’t be problems with my cellphone contract.

  6. Yasuko Chatman Says:

    To understand the legal textual content messaging capability of your verizon cellphone contract, start by looking at the conditions you signed up under. If the terms stated undue burdens and conflicting changes then you can break the contract.

  7. Casey Says:

    Okay, I really want to do this, but I hate talking to Verizon customer service. (It takes FOREVER and they can just be RUDE!!) So I was wondering what the email was that you emailed them about your problem. Thanks
    -casey-

  8. Sylvester Says:

    Great tip for getting out of your old Verizon contract, even though they now have the iPhone.

  9. sasha Says:

    I’ve never had issues with a rude Verizon rep. It sounds like many of you have. You know, if you don’t want to be in a contract, don’t accept the subsidized upgrade price of a mobile phone. Pay the full retail price of 500 – 700 dollars and you’ll be set!

  10. Waton Says:

    It is appropriate time to make some plans for the future if you wish to get out of a verizon mobile contract, and this is a good method. The customer service reps have to listen to your story.

  11. Emanuel Campfield Says:

    Verizon on the web has come a long way from the days of easy signups, we were finally able to switch to ATT.

  12. Sandy Says:

    I want to get out of my Verizon contract. we have NOT been happy with them and are going over to AT&T…I still have more than a year in my contract we only came to VZ in the spring of this year. is there anyway I can get out without paying ETF? Thanks

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  15. moncler Wisehart Says:

    Thanks much for offering this! I’ve been pulling my hair out trying to resolve this challenge with verizon wireless service reps.