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Verizon New Jersey Settles Class Action Alleging Overbilling [08/19/2006]
A New Jersey court approved a groundbreaking settlement in a class action lawsuit against Verizon New Jersey, Inc. The lawsuit alleged that Verizon continued to bill customers for circuits that no longer existed. The settlement agreement provides significant benefits to Verizon customers throughout New Jersey.

In a complaint filed in 2003, Plaintiffs Junto Investments and James Cogan alleged that Verizon continued to charge them for non-switched analog circuits even though the circuits had been destroyed or otherwise ceased to function. Non-switched analog circuits are non-dialtone phone lines that are routinely used for burglar alarm services, monitoring, telemetry, and other similar services. These circuits may become non-operational due to a variety of causes, such as the customer's discontinuance of burglar alarm service or the destruction of the wiring during remodeling. Junto and Cogan alleged that Verizon continued to bill customers for these circuits.

Under the terms of the settlement, all New Jersey customers billed for non-switched analog circuits will be notified by Verizon. Customers can request that their circuits be disconnected and, if they believe that Verizon took the circuit out of service, have the right to request that Verizon technicians conduct an on-site inspection of the wiring. Following this inspection, if it is determined that the circuit is unusable, the customer will receive a refund of two years' worth of charges. Customers whose circuits are usable or that were destroyed may request that charges cease immediately.

Having received final approval by Judge Alexander P. Waugh, Jr., the settlement will be implemented and customers will receive benefits in a few months.


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