Shocked by $2,700 phone bill, man turns to Call for Action

FORT MYERS, Fla. – A Lee County family shocked by its $2,700 bill from the cell phone company, turned to our volunteers at Call for Action for help.

Married for 59 years, Larry and Eva Cornthwaid have been through their fair share of ups and downs. But what they saw when they opened up their most recent Verizon Wireless bill was a first.

“The sky is falling,” said Larry about what he thought after seeing a bill for $2,700.

The Cornthwaids said they tried calling the company and failed to get the bill lowered. Larry said he did not understand why his bill ballooned so drastically, nor did he know how he was going to pay it. Then, a friend made a suggestion.

“She says call WINK, Call for Action… she said them people, if anybody can, will help you,” he said.

Our WINK News Call for Action hotline is manned by volunteers Tuesday through Thursday. They help consumers like Larry understand what happened, and hopefully resolve their issues.

Less than an hour after calling us, Verizon offered to lower the Cornthwaid’s bill from $2,700 to just $100.

Meanwhile, Larry had this advice to anyone who finds themselves in a similar situation.

“If you run into a situation like this, call WINK! Because this is the only place that I know of that you will get an honest answer,” he said.

We reached out to Verizon and although they could not comment specifically on what happened in this specific case, they sent us this statement:

In working with the Cornthwaid’s [sic] to review their account and activity, it was determined that the overage on their bill was the result of an increase in data usage.
As Snowbirds will soon be flocking to the Sunshine State, that means family and friends will be visiting as well. It’s important for everyone to know how their technology works and how to protect their account from unwanted overages and fees.
To protect your account, Verizon offers several resources to its customers to help safeguard devices and plan usage.
Verizon’s Family Base services allow customers to set usage controls that require passwords and permissions for access.
Additionally, customers can visit one of our stores for a Wireless Workshop, which offers insight about devices and accessories or speak to one of our associates about the many ways to protect your account.



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