Dealing with a billing error can be frustrating. But giving up too quickly will only cost you money. If you’ve got an erroneous bills to settle, here’s what to do:
- Write a polite letter. Control your irritation if you want results. Describe the problem and ask for help. Customer service personnel will be more willing to work with you if you don’t attack them.
- Follow the chain of command. Addressing a letter to the CEO of a bank, for example, may only delay a resolution. Start at the bottom, and work your way up until the problem is resolved.
- Write within 60 days of receiving the erroneous bill. The Fair Credit Billing Act will protect you only if you follow its limits. That means writing to the company within 60 days after the bill was sent to you.
- Give full information. Include your name, address, account number, a brief description of the problem, and copies of the sales slips and other documents that support your claim. Try to keep the letter to a single page.
- CC a regulator. If you show that you’re sending a copy of the letter and documents to the Comptroller of the Currency or the Federal Trade Commission, you signal that you mean business.
- Confirm delivery. Send the letter by certified mail with return receipt.