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Sprint to Pay $2.95 Million for Failing to Notify Lower-Credit Customers They Were Being Charged Extra

The settlement, which requires court approval, also requires the carrier to give earlier notice if it plans to charge a customer more than those with better credit.


The Federal Trade Commission said Wednesday that Sprint will pay $2.95 million in civil penalties to settle charges it failed to give proper notice to those with lower credit scores that they were being charged higher fees than more creditworthy customers.

In its complaint, the FTC said that Sprint put some such customers in a program that required them to pay a $7.99 monthly fee on top of their other charges.

“Sprint failed to give many consumers required information about why they were placed in a more costly program, and when they did, the notice often came too late for consumers to choose another mobile carrier,” FTC consumer protection bureau director Jessica Rich said in a statement.

The FTC said Sprint failed to provide timely notice, often alerting consumers only after the time period in which they could cancel their service without a fee.

The proposed settlement, which is subject to court approval, would also require Sprint to provide customers with earlier notice of being placed in a higher-priced plan.

Sprint, for its part, said it was including almost all of the relevant information in its disclosures, but made changes in July as part of its effort to settle the matter.

“Sprint puts its customers first and is always working to provide clear and necessary information to customers,” the company said in a statement. “We appreciated the dialogue with the FTC and we have already implemented the changes requested.”

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