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How would you rate your dealings with Lenovo's Customer Service?
Positive 62%  62%  [ 21 ]
Negative 38%  38%  [ 13 ]
Total votes : 34
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 4:30 pm 
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Let me start off by saying I love thinkpads. I've owned Dells, Sony's, etc, and although I've never had any real problems with other laptops, Thinkpads are by far my favorite laptops ever produced - ever.

Now that thats clear, I'm trying to solicit some advice from some of the forum members here on thinkpads.com as to my recent customer service (Overused word) with Lenovo. It's a rather long story, so please excuse my long-windedness in relaying it all...

I ordered a T60 back in June. I was more than happy to wait the month required for the laptop to be built and shipped to me from Hong Kong, and I eagerly awaited it's arrival.

Much to my dismay, when it did finally arrive, it came sans battery and power cord! I promptly called Lenovo and was informed by a customer service rep that I would have to wait _another_ 3 to 4 weeks to have the power cord and battery that was supposed to have been in the initial order shipped to me. I can understand needing to wait a month for a laptop to be built, but shouldn't they have spare power cords & batteries handy?

Anywho, I called around locally to numerous retail outlets and searched through classified ads to see if I could find an alternate Thinkpad locally. It wouldn't be built to the initial specs I wanted, but at least it would be a thinkpad.

Luckily I found one, again - not up to the specs I really wanted, but at that point it seemed better to sacrifice some speed for the ability to at least have it rightaway.

I figured I would simply purchase this laptop locally and return the one I got directly from Lenovo - no big deal.

I called up Lenovo Customer Support again and spoke to a lady who spoke very good Enligsh, I wasn't really able to decipher for certain if she was from some outsourced call center or not... Anyway, I informed her of the mixup that occured and stated I simply wanted to return the machine back to Lenovo as I had already purchased an alternate Thinkpad elsewhere.

She happily obliged (this is where the whole thing gets 'interesting') and asked me if I had the original box that I received the laptop in. I replied that yes, I did and asked why she asked. "Simply repackage the laptop in it's original box and drop it off at a UPS store." was her answer.

This struck me as odd, she made no mention of an RMA number or anything. I asked her if I needed some sort of 'return number' and she replied that the initial box the laptop was shipped to me in had my Lenovo order number plainly upon it, and that thats what would be used, not any sort of RMA number."

OK, so no RMA number - thats weird but I guess it makes sense. I *thought* they'd be sending me a box or something to send it back in. I asked her if I was supposed to pay for shipping, and she responded with "Oh, no, just 'return to sender.' Wait WHAT?

"Just Return To Sender" she said again. I asked her to clarify what she meant by that, thinking she just meant "Return the laptop to Lenovo." No, she replied back with: "Write Return To Sender on the shipping label and take it to a UPS store." "What about a tracking number? What about Insurance?" I asked. "Tracking number will be Tracking Number we gave you at first, package will still be insured."

Ok, that sounded really odd - like no other return procedure I've ever dealt with in my life, which I guess hasn't been all that many, but even still it was just a seemingly odd way to go about it.

So supposedly my RMA number was my Lenovo order number, my tracking number would be the tracking number I already had on hand and the package was insured. Like I said, I thought this seemed pretty weird, but it sounded like all my bases were covered. Even so I ran over the whole thing all over again with the Lenovo rep and got the same reply. Good enough - as long as they get the laptop back there won't be a problem I figured.

So I did as instructed and wrote 'return to sender' on the package and dropped it off at a UPS store.

I waited... and waited... and waited... about two to three weeks later I called back in and inquired as to the status of the whole thing. "We have no record of you ever having called, that is not the correct return procedure, I'm very sorry but there is nothing more we can do to help you - *click*" was what I was told. They just hung up on me!

Ok, now I'm a little peeved, so I call back and try to figure out what on earth happened. Again, I'm told they have no record of me ever having called and no record of my machine. Although they didn't hang up on me the second time around, I was unable to get any straight answer as to what happened. I asked to speak to a supervisor only to be told that there was no supervisor. Now thats just ridiculous, EVERYONE has a supervisor. I again demanded a supervisor, and again was there was no supervisor. This went on for a good five minutes till the story changed to "the supervisor is not present." I then requested a call back from a supervisor, gave my name, order number(rma number?) and my cell phone number.

24 hours go by, 48 hours go by, 72 hours go by... Finally Friday hit and no one called back. At this point I was utterly PO'd about the whole deal, having already sent the machine back to Lenovo and with Lenovo not even acknowledging that I had done so, it seemed like I wouldn't be able to make any further progress by trying to call them back and being upset.

I called up my credit card company instead, told them what happened and they told me they would initiate a chargeback on my behalf and that I shouldn't worry about it.

At this point I was pleased that at least someone was capable of remedying this situation. I let it the whole matter go assuming it to be resolved... Up until I received a call from my CC company wanting written details of what happened for their records. I promptly complied and didn't think much of it as it was simply a form letter which looked pretty routine.

A day or so passes and I receive my first of many phone calls from Tony Bumarch in Lenovo Executive Customer Relations. Mr Bumarch was exceedingly polite; however, entirely unsympathetic to what had occurred. He told me that they showed no record of me having called to initiate the return process and therefore I must never have called.

I most certainly did call, and I've actually run into this similar situation with my cell phone company. One rep @ Cingular will tell me something but not notate my account of what was discussed, so when I call back in the second time around, no one knows what I'm talking about. A common problem I assume, as I've heard other people complain about the exact same thing with Cingular and other cellular companies. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would run into this problem with a Computer Company tho - I honestly didn't even think to request that the lady I initially spoke to @ Lenovo notate my account detailing what was discussed concerning the return policy.

Mr Bumarch tells me there isn't much he can do and instructs me to call the UPS store that I dropped the package off at. The UPS store I dropped the package off at instructs me to call UPS, UPS instructs me to call Lenovo, and Lenovo again instructs me to contact UPS. (I'm sure you can all see where this is going by now..) Round and round it goes till I get upset and Mr Bumarch tells me HE will call the UPS store on my behalf while I wait on hold. I wait on hold and Mr Bumarch comes back on the phone and says that it sounds like the UPS store might have a way to track my package as having gone out and that I should call the UPS store and talk to the owner.

I call the UPS store and spoke to the exact same lady Mr Bumarch just spoke with moments before. She informs me there there is absolutely no way to track outbound packages dropped off at the UPS store unless that UPS store sent it out with one of their shipping labels. THEN she tells me that she just told Mr Bumarch this moments ago and asked why I was calling back asking the SAME question! Why on earth would Mr Bumarch instruct me to call the UPS store when he himself just spoke to them and they told him that they could not track an outbound package unless it was sent with that UPS store's shipping label?!

I call Mr Bumarch back and ask him why he gave me the misleading information, only to be told by HIM that the UPS store employee did not tell him what she told me, DESPITE the UPS store employee telling me just moments after she spoke to me that she informed him of this. (argh!@#%%)

I told Mr Bumarch that I resented the endless games of phone-tag I've been playing with him, and the additional run around he's made me go through with UPS and that it's to the point where it sounds like I need to file some sort of complaint with the BBB.

His response?

"All the BBB complaints are routed through myself, so I'll be sure to tell the BBB exactly what I'm telling you." (This was said in a polite, yet condescending tone)

That being: Since they had no record of me calling to return the laptop, I must never have done so.

Oh, and by this point my CC company said that the dispute was over and Lenovo had successfully fought the chargeback off because I could not provide a tracking number other than the initial tracking number on the box that was shipped to me in...

So, at this point I do not have the laptop I payed $1600 for, and I'll I've got to show for this entire experience is a massive headache from dealing with Lenovo's customer care.

Realizing I was getting absolutely nowhere with Tony Bumarch in executive care, I placed e-mails detailing this horror story to numerous executives inside Lenovo, namely among them was 'David Churbuck' VP of sales and marketing.

David Churbuck expressed via e-mail initial interest in looking into my case, but I never heard back from him. When I e-mailed him again, I got what seemed like a form letter (although I'm sure it was not) simply stating "I am not responsible for looking into this, Tony Bumarch is handling your case."

So a complete about-face was done, leaving my sole source of contact within Lenovo to Mr Bumarch, who was entirely unsympathetic to my situation and had just recently told me in no uncertain terms that the case was closed.

I filed a complaint with the BBB anyway - Lenovo's response? "Customer Never Sent the Equipment Back To Us"

So Lenovo's offical response is that I'm a liar and that I should be expected to simply eat this $1600 fee for a laptop I already returned to them!

Oh, here are some additional points I think I may have neglected to mention:

I requested that some sort of audit be done at the Lenovo returns center to see if someone could find my machine. Lenovo's response? Thats a wildly unreasonable request. I was also told that unauthorized returns are promptly refurbished and re-sold with a matter of weeks, leaving me with the conclusion that it's entirely possible that Lenovo simply refurbished (slapped a battery and power cable with the machine) and resold it to someone else.

I was told that this situation would never have occurred, as Lenovo has a strict guideline that they follow for refurbished machines. <sarcasm> If said guideline is anything like their return policy guidelines, I'm sure it's always followed to the letter every single time</sarcasm>

Oh, and I was also told that "no one within Lenovo would ever instruct you to return a machine in that manner," Which is entirely laughable, as thats exactly what occurred! I'm left to conclude that Lenovo's reps are probably underpayed and overworked, and as a result don't take all that much pride in memorizing and reciting corporate policies without fail each and every time.

Due to the above excuse being cited over and over, no one within Lenovo will even take responsibility for giving me the incorrect information on how to go about returning a machine to them. I didn't even get an "I'm sorry" out of Mr Bumarch. He DID go so far as to say he'll issue a company wide memo re-iterating the correct return procedures to the front line Lenovo reps, but I suspect this was simply to placate me, as later I got a reply from him via the BBB that bluntly insinuated that I was just a big liar.

And after speaking with Mr Bumarch, I wasn't even demanding a refund at that point, I told him I would settle simply for the return of the machine I sent to them, but since no one will go out of their way to look for it, that doesn't seem possible either.

Holy geez, this is a long winded post. I'm sorry, but thank you for reading over it. I would appreciate anyone's input on what I could possibly do to try and rectify this Overused word.

To sum the whole thing up, it feels like Lenovo lied to me, stole my money and told me to simply 'go away.'

I dearly love my thinkpads, and I really hate to feel like I can never purchase another one from Lenovo again based upon this hellish experience.

As a sheer matter of principle (finances aside, whether it be $1.60 or $1600) I can't just stand aside and let a company railroad me into misfortune. Anyone have any ideas? (Feel free to e-mail me at pernod@ureach.com) I'm simply at my wits end with Lenovo right now...

(Tony Bumarch's direct number is XXXXXXXX and his e-mail is XXXXXXXXXX, should anyone doubt the veracity of my claims, I'm sure he'll re-iterate most everything that I've outlined above.)

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 5:08 pm 
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That's some story! It's hard to know how to respond to it. What Lenovo can do to track the machine, I really don't know. Each machine has a unique serial number, and unless that serial number was changed when and if the unit was refurbished, it would seem that Lenovo should have some record of it if it was resold. But I really don't know how Lenovo handles unauthorized returns.

That being said, I do think you were remiss in not making a second call to Lenovo before sending the machine back to them. With that much money at stake, I would have made a second call to verify what the first CSR told me. Additionally, I would have tried to get the return procedure from them in writing or requested where I could see it online. Due to the following, this was the only prudent thing to do so that all your "bases were covered":

royco wrote:
"Just Return To Sender" she said again. I asked her to clarify what she meant by that, thinking she just meant "Return the laptop to Lenovo." No, she replied back with: "Write Return To Sender on the shipping label and take it to a UPS store." "What about a tracking number? What about Insurance?" I asked. "Tracking number will be Tracking Number we gave you at first, package will still be insured."

Ok, that sounded really odd - like no other return procedure I've ever dealt with in my life, which I guess hasn't been all that many, but even still it was just a seemingly odd way to go about it.

So supposedly my RMA number was my Lenovo order number, my tracking number would be the tracking number I already had on hand and the package was insured. Like I said, I thought this seemed pretty weird, but it sounded like all my bases were covered. Even so I ran over the whole thing all over again with the Lenovo rep and got the same reply. Good enough - as long as they get the laptop back there won't be a problem I figured.

So I did as instructed and wrote 'return to sender' on the package and dropped it off at a UPS store.


One other thing. When I went back to the UPS store, I would have verified with the employee there that there was some way for me to track the package. I am the cautious type - especially when I stand a chance of losing my hard earned money.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 5:35 pm 
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I actually ran into a similar situation. The Lenovo sales rep told me to write return to sender on a newly shipped T61 box. Instead of taking her word for it I called back and the second rep told me that the other rep should never have given that advice. Needless to say, I got an RMA number and shipped the very expensive T61 back on my dime so that I could track it and also to add insurance to cover myself. I think your major mistake is that you took a sales rep at their word...big mistake, and not just at Lenovo. I'm not sure I blame this situation on Lenovo (although they obviously played a small part) as much as I blame it on your error in judgement (and or inexperience). I certainly understand where Tony Bumarch is coming from, anyone could claim they returned a machine and ask for credit.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 5:52 pm 
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I have to agree with Harry and GomJabber. I would never have shipped anything that expensive without some form of tracking to prove it.

While there has been a lot of discussion about when a restocking fee applies, the rest of their Return Policy is pretty clear. You need an RMA, and from a self-protection standpoint, you need to track it.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 6:06 pm 
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Harryc: Thank the gods I'm not alone! Everyone within Lenovo is telling me that this never would have happened EVER, and while it's clear to me that this did happen to ME, it's re-assuring to know that it's happened to others as well.

GomJabbor: I appreciate the advice, and in retrospect you're most correct, but on the flip side of the coin, it really shouldn't be necessary to call back over and over to 'double check' the instructions of a representative of _any_ company. Thats just ridiculous!

Again tho, I completely agree with you, and I do feel foolish for not trusting my initial gut reaction to this situation that something was clearly NOT right with the instructions being given to me.

I've asked via e-mail David Churbuck (XXXXXXX) the very cordial and straightforward question of:

"So the fault rests on the customer for following instructions given to them by a rep @ Lenovo no matter how incorrect and inaccurate that information may be?"

I got no reply via e-mail. (Suprise, Surprise) I posted this same question on his blog at www.churbuck.com/wordpress - it was promptly deleted.

Now bear in mind I realize I'm dealing with high level executives within Lenovo - these are (I would like to assume) intelligent people and I have done my utmost to respond to them on an intelligent level, checking my emotions at the door and keeping it cordial, despite my overwhelming sense of frustration and anger. That seems to have gotten me absolutely no where - I might as well have addressed them as an infuriated babbling loon - I doubt it would have made a difference.

On a quick side note HarryC - if you would - I would very, very much appreciate it if you could e-mail Tony Bumarch (XXXXXXXX) in Lenovo Executive Relations detailing that someone also advised you of the incorrect return procedure in the same manner they did myself. (My last name is 'Collins' - and I've spoken to him so much as of late I'm sure he'll know what you're referencing.) If nothing else, perhaps he'll take it a little more seriously and hopefully sincerely address this issue so at the very least other people don't have this same miserable experience.

(As it stands right now, he has all but outright called me a liar and told me there is no way this could have occurred, so it would be nice to have someone relay that they experienced a similar situation as myself, and that I'm not just some lone crackpot)

I completely understand if you don't want to get involved tho...

Also, if you look at: http://lenovoblogs.com/insidethebox/?p=84 you'll see reams and reams of posts about people who have placed orders with Lenovo and have just been outright lied to by Lenovo reps left and right about everything ranging from system build specs to order dates to return policies. It's insane the amount of issues Lenovo seems to be having right now with providing a just a mediocre level of customer service.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 6:12 pm 
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I honestly believed the instructions given to me by the rep @ Lenovo I spoke with, and when I asked about the tracking number, she informed me that the old tracking number would simply be 'recycled,' so I really thought I _had_ a tracking number.

That was of course incorrect as I later came to find out.

Sigh

nonny wrote:
I have to agree with Harry and GomJabber. I would never have shipped anything that expensive without some form of tracking to prove it.

While there has been a lot of discussion about when a restocking fee applies, the rest of their Return Policy is pretty clear. You need an RMA, and from a self-protection standpoint, you need to track it.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 6:22 pm 
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Note to the moderator:

I apologize, I did not realize I was breaking any rules and won't do that again. (The information I mentioned is found elsewhere on the internet, so it didn't even cross my mind at the time that it could be considered a violation of privacy.)

Thanks for bringing that to my attention.

Regards


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 6:36 pm 
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What a trainwreck.

Do not believe that they do not have a record of you calling about the return. While it is entirely possible that the representative did not enter a summary of your conversation into the system (while that should have happened, this particular action is widely disregarded by reps everywhere), they simply must have some record of you calling that they can find if they look hard enough.

If necessary, call up your phone company and ask for a billing. Show Lenovo the call you've placed to them and ask them to find it in their records.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 6:40 pm 
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Did you try tracking with the old tracking number to see if it was scanned the date you dropped it off? When I drop off anything at a UPS Store (I print my own labels and just drop off) I always have them scan the package and print me a receipt.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 6:51 pm 
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royco wrote:
I posted this same question on his blog - it was promptly deleted.


Now that does surprise me since he usually seems to be open to criticism, but while I remember reading this story there, I don't see it now.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 6:52 pm 
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qviri: thats a great idea! I hadn't even thought of that... I'll see if I can get a detailed copy of my outgoing phone calls through my phone company and just fax it to them with a note. Not sure if it will do any good, but it's worth a shot...

Mr Bumarch seems entirely unsympathetic to my situation, and really doesn't seem at all interested in looking into the matter thoroughly - I really wish I could be put into contact with anyone else within Lenovo who would actually pursue my case, but I've been told that there is absolutely no one else I can contact in regards to this within Lenovo, and everyone who I have been able to get through to @ Lenovo just tells me to contact Mr Bumarch.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 7:02 pm 
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The old tracking number was not 'recycled' in anyway like I was told it would be, so that would seem to be a dead end... I very much appreciate your thoughts on the matter though, thank you for taking the time to read over this long debacle.

When I dropped it off at the UPS store, they just took the package and placed it in the back, so I assumed at the time that it was with all the other packages that UPS would pick up that day.

I've shipped a great many things via UPS in the past and never had a problem with them, so it's really hard for me to consider that someone within UPS just up and stole the package (I know you didn't insinuate that they did, I'm just thinking aloud so to speak) - it seems far more probable that my machine was just delivered to Lenovo and not properly processed.

Like I mentioned, I asked for some sort of audit or inventory to be done at the Lenovo return center, but was told this was a wildly unreasonable request. (But asking a customer to pay in full for a machine that they sent back to Lenovo is apparently completely reasonable...)

tselling wrote:
Did you try tracking with the old tracking number to see if it was scanned the date you dropped it off? When I drop off anything at a UPS Store (I print my own labels and just drop off) I always have them scan the package and print me a receipt.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 7:10 pm 
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My experience with Mr Churbuck was entirely positive at first, and I genuinely believed he would give the matter a thorough looking into based upon his initial response.

I however got no reply back from him and when I tried to inquire what the status of his inquiry into it was, I got the 'cold shoulder.'

I just did a name search for him on Google, and lots of entries show up of him posting to people's blogs who were detailing their own Lenovo Customer Service misfortunes - he seemed entirely helpful and very much interested in righting any wrongs, so I have no idea why this does not seem to be the case in this particular instance.

I hate to be cynical, and I really hope I'm incorrect in this presumption, but it seems to me that he is very quick to remedy problems when there are 'PR points' to be earned, and perhaps if I had a well known blog, his reaction might have been different.

(I would really like to believe that this isn't the case, as from everything I've read about him/from him, he seems like a really good guy - that however has unfortunately just not been reflected in my personal interactions with him...)


nonny wrote:
royco wrote:
I posted this same question on his blog - it was promptly deleted.


Now that does surprise me since he usually seems to be open to criticism, but while I remember reading this story there, I don't see it now.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 7:31 pm 
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qviri wrote:
What a trainwreck.

Do not believe that they do not have a record of you calling about the return.

he can have record of calling lenovo but no proof of the of the actual conversation. and i had my own story with lenovo as well. since then i decided not to deal with their incompetent sales reps. im sorry for your loss.


Last edited by mattbiernat on Thu Sep 06, 2007 7:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 7:32 pm 
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royco wrote:
I've shipped a great many things via UPS in the past and never had a problem with them, so it's really hard for me to consider that someone within UPS just up and stole the package (I know you didn't insinuate that they did, I'm just thinking aloud so to speak) - it seems far more probable that my machine was just delivered to Lenovo and not properly processed.

Packages do get "Lost" with any shipping service. I could be too that a UPS employee realized there was no paper trail on the package and took advantage of the 5-finger discount. There really seems no way of telling with certainty what happened to the package after it was dropped off at UPS.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 7:33 pm 
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royco wrote:
My experience with Mr Churbuck was entirely positive at first, and I genuinely believed he would give the matter a thorough looking into based upon his initial response.

I however got no reply back from him and when I tried to inquire what the status of his inquiry into it was, I got the 'cold shoulder.'


Well, realistically speaking, look at the amount of skepticism you're receiving here even from those who cheerfully criticize Lenovo for many things. While we're all "wow, hate it for you", it takes a leap of faith to believe you since you didn't take the steps necessary to protect yourself. I'm not sure I blame Lenovo as a company for not doing so.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 7:41 pm 
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nonny wrote:
I'm not sure I blame Lenovo as a company for not doing so.

you are right but Lenovo should at least investigate what really happened. they could perhaps ask him for the copy of his cell phone bill and check it with their records. and if no employee entered any kind of information about that record they should fire him/her. they could be at least sympathetic and offer to investigate the matter...


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 7:46 pm 
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mattbiernat wrote:
qviri wrote:
Do not believe that they do not have a record of you calling about the return.

he can have record of calling lenovo but no proof of the of the actual conversation.


Well yes, but it's a considerable change from "we have no record of you ever calling us" to "you did call us, but we don't have the outcome of that call logged in our system so we're going to assume you are lying about what you were told". Asking customers to tape the conversations in the event what they are told is false is a bit much.


Roy: if they won't acknowledge that you have returned the laptop, report it as stolen, assuming you remember / wrote down the serial number. If someone at UPS really did take it, they may get what they deserve if they ever try to exercise the warranty. Little, but it may help.



edit: to expand on what I mean, here is what the conversation looks like now:

Roy: I called you and was told by your representative, whom you had hired to accurately convey your policies and whom therefore I had no reason to distrust, to do blah blah blah in order to get my money back. I did blah blah blah, and I would like my money back.
Lenovo: We have no record of you calling us or you doing blah blah blah. We have no reason to believe this has happened. We are therefore unable to give you your money back.
Roy: :(

With a billing in hand, conversation changes to:

Roy: I called you on this day at this time (here is proof of this from an uninvolved, dependable third party), and was told by your representative, whom you had hired to accurately convey your policies and whom therefore I had no reason to distrust, to do blah blah blah in order to get my money back. I did blah blah blah, and I would like my money back.
Lenovo: We have no record of you calling us, however we have to acknowledge that you did. Since we do not know who you spoke to, we cannot deny that a representative told you to blah blah blah. Here is your money back.
Roy: :)

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Last edited by qviri on Thu Sep 06, 2007 10:39 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2007 7:49 pm 
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While even this is insufficient, you should have at the very least requested a receipt of some sort from UPS at the time you dropped off the ThinkPad. There seems little recourse for you at this point because you did not exercise "due diligence".

I do have sympathy for your plight and I hope that you receive a satisfactory outcome - if possible.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2007 12:47 am 
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royco, you screwed up..

now what..?!

1. go to UPS store and try to pick out the employee you left the parcel with and get that person to admit that you DID leave a parcel..

if you can't find that employee, than ask why the UPS store would "receive" such an undocumented packae in the first place and if so, what would be done with it..
NOTHING goes in or out without a scan..,!!!!!

2. IBM and now lenovo can ston wall you pretty good..
big companies get good at that and ibm was no exception..
to be blunt, lenovo screwed you good, if ANY of that trainwreck is true..

what would i do at this point..?
start gathering all the paperwork i can pertaining to the original order and so forth..

then, in the words of the bard, "Sue the *****Expletives removed by Moderator*****"..
in small claims court, where you can get a pretty fair hearing..

many of the thoughts presented in this thread are excellent and i would follow those that can be followed..

FWIW, i had the same experience with a car cover i ordered..
the rep sdaid the same thing.. "just send it back" and i had to go to amex to get credit..

i'm also in a battle with megamacs over a powerbook AC adapter they sold without the line cord..
but i took screenshots of their web page BEFORE they made changes so i THINK i "got 'em!".. :)

you know, when you call these customer reps and you hear "this conversation may be recorded for training purposes"..?
thats the first lie..

but its a good lawyer lie..
"MAY" is key here..
why am i mentioning this, because someone should do a small accessory for computers to record the call YOU make so YOU have a record..
a device that will advise the same tricky lawyer-speak "this casll MAY be recorder......" and if they ask "IS it being recorded, just say "i don't think so"..

your trainwreck is due to an ALMOST impossible situation of a new thinkpad being shipped without battery or AC adapter..
ALMOSE because a similar thing happened to me when i ordered 8 thinkpad A31p's years ago..
all those items are in the accessory box which i think is made up seperate and just added to the thinkpad in packing and not inspected for correct content..

so you have your work cut out for you..
go play Sam Spade and dig for witness's..
and whatever you do, do NOT mention COURT or SUE until you DO sue.. :)
then sue the *****Expletives removed by Moderator*****..
OH!, a hint: venue usually runs where the transaction took place..
or where the defendant is located..
so you have two reasons to make this a local venue..
sue the UPS store as they should be a defendant (local) and lenovo, chrubuck, et al (transaction initiated from your living room, also local)..

caveat: i am NOT a lawyer and this advice is not legal advice.. :twisted:

sorry for the disconnected logic..
without editing, cordially and with sore fingers, i remain:

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2007 1:04 am 
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Wow. This is horrifying! I sincerely hope that you get some sort of resolution on the matter. Honestly, while I enjoy very much purchasing used ThinkPads and fixing them as needed, I don't think I would ever buy a new one because of the sales representatives and the on-site technicians (or at least pray that if I did buy a new machine that no sort of defect presented itself.)

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2007 2:24 am 
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Location: Singapore.. a tropical country..
No complains about their services. Got free snacks, free beverage, free computer to surf internet and etc... The guys are friendly even though i am quite a demanding customer and they have the patience to serve me... So, A+++ for them..

:P :D

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2007 4:42 am 
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Roy, no doubt your experience is abysmal, please accept my sympathy as well.

At this moment, if you still wish lenovo to look into this matter then you'll have to make people at higher level (other than CR, MKT department etc.) aware of your situation. Mr. William J. (Bill) Amelio can be one of them. In your situation, people in lower position than that would be of little or no help to you as all information gets audited at lenovo.

Nevertheless, without obtaining any RMA number and sending back your machine with no way of proving it to lenovo you did, please be ready to expect your case to dim away in the dark soon.

The lady was very incompetent who advised you about such a non existing return procedure. If you were perplexed with her guidance, you could've come here before and ask for suggestion. I am very surprised you called twice and received the same response about the same return procedure twice!. I am also starting to wonder if by mistake you didn't call UPS store instead of lenovo?. Please make sure was this the # you called: 1-866-428-4465?. If so then honestly I can't decide who to blame, an unqualified rep at whose hands lenovo would take the brunt on forums or a suffering buyer who did his part by getting in touch with lenovo but failed to take precautions.

Good Luck!

P.S. I feel really sorry for you, please make a note, there is no sarcasm involved in my post, it was addressed in a very modest manner.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2007 12:57 pm 
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I'm sorry if I was unclear in anyway: I called Lenovo a total of one time and spoke to one lady who advised me of the incorrect return procedure. She however went over and over the return procedure with me, as I asked her to clarify exactly what I was to do numerous times in my conversation with her.

So this was a situation where I spoke to one lady (@Lenovo) that kept repeating the incorrect return procedure to me. At first what I was hearing seemed really wrong, but she kept assuring me that all my bases would be covered, so as it was repeated to me over and over it slowly seemed more plausible that thats how packages were typically returned. (ie: RMA # = Lenovo Order #, New Tracking Number = Old Tracking Number, etc.)

I apologize if I was in anyway unclear on that.

Re: Mr Amelio, I think I've located a home address for Mr Amelio via Zabasearch, do you think it would uncooth of me to simply snail mail him a letter detailing my experience? If that would be a little too direct, do you perhaps have any other suggestions on how to best go about contacting Mr Amelio in a fitting (polite) manner?






ryengineer wrote:
Roy, no doubt your experience is abysmal, please accept my sympathy as well.

At this moment, if you still wish lenovo to look into this matter then you'll have to make people at higher level (other than CR, MKT department etc.) aware of your situation. Mr. William J. (Bill) Amelio can be one of them. In your situation, people in lower position than that would be of little or no help to you as all information gets audited at lenovo.

Nevertheless, without obtaining any RMA number and sending back your machine with no way of proving it to lenovo you did, please be ready to expect your case to dim away in the dark soon.

The lady was very incompetent who advised you about such a non existing return procedure. If you were perplexed with her guidance, you could've come here before and ask for suggestion. I am very surprised you called twice and received the same response about the same return procedure twice!. I am also starting to wonder if by mistake you didn't call UPS store instead of lenovo?. Please make sure was this the # you called: 1-866-428-4465?. If so then honestly I can't decide who to blame, an unqualified rep at whose hands lenovo would take the brunt on forums or a suffering buyer who did his part by getting in touch with lenovo but failed to take precautions.

Good Luck!

P.S. I feel really sorry for you, please make a note, there is no sarcasm involved in my post, it was addressed in a very modest manner.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2007 2:07 pm 
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I completely agree that I am partially to blame for this scenario. I really, really should have called back and spoke to another rep @ Lenovo to confirm that my gut feeling of 'somethings not right' was indeed correct.

That being said, I also feel that an equal part of the blame for this misfortune rests with Lenovo. I would never, in a million years, have just thought to 'return to sender' this machine on my own, and I was more than prepared to send it in the proper manner, hence my call to Lenovo to garner some sort of official instructions re: their return procedure.

The problem here, in my opinion, is that Lenovo takes absolutely no responsibility what-so-ever for this situation, and I cannot even get an apology from them or an admission that sort of situation could even happen to begin with! Mr Bumarch would rather insinuate that I'm some sort of liar than he would admit that anyone within Lenovo could possibly not have followed the correct procedure.

(According to him, every procedure put forth by Lenovo is handled to the letter each and every time without fail - ever; which as well as know simply is not true: even the most well oiled machines break down from time to time.)

This is really bad customer service in my book - if they cannot even admit that the problem occurred, then they aren't going to be able to prevent it from occurring again in the future.

As is evidenced by this post, HenryC stated earlier that the exact same return procedure was given to him as well, but he (luckily) knew better than to trust that and called back for clarification.

So, if someone else on this very same forum was advised of the dangerously incorrect return procedure as I was, then the odds that quite a few people outside the realm of this forum are being advised of the incorrect return procedure are quite high. (Apparently there are at least *some* Lenovo reps out there who are just advising customers of the incorrect return procedure all willy nilly)

That is outlandishly ridiculous in my opinion. We're not talking about rocket science here, this is a standardized return procedure within a corporation - they could afford thousands of post-it-note with a print out of the return procedure on it and slap them on every employee's monitor if need be. Something *could* be done to remedy this from ever happening again if anyone higher up cared to address this major issue. That would of course require them to admit that theres a problem in the first place, which as of yet, no one is willing to do.

Even if I'm just completely 100% 'screwed over' financially speaking, I would derive great satisfaction from at least being the person that brought about change within Lenovo and made them make sure that no one else ever had to suffer what I have had to suffer through.

I really do fear that I am probably going to just have to eat this $1600 loss and chalk it up to a very expensive lesson learned, as the paper trail that should exist is nowhere to be found. No matter who I talk to: UPS, the UPS store or Lenovo, they all insist that there is not a shred of paper they can provide me with that would aid in me proving that I did indeed drop it off.

I've never been to small claims court, so I haven't the foggiest on how to proceed there - does anyone perhaps have an idea as to where I could read up on initiating a suit? Given the lack of a paper trail, I'm not even sure small claims court would work out, and if it somehow didn't, wouldn't I have to pay Lenovo's legal fees if I couldn't satisfactorily prove what happened? Having Lenovo stick it to me for any more money than they already have is a rather frightening prospect.

Anywho, I'm very, very disappointed with Lenovo,* and it really pains me greatly to say that I will never be doing business with them directly again.

*=I can't stress this part enough - this isn't just an 'oh that sucks,' it's more of a "*sob* lenovo broke my heart" kind of deal. I have intense brand loyalty for the companies and products that I find to be the best of their kind, and up until this point I had the utmost respect and admiration for Lenovo as a company.. I never dreamed that they would put me in such a horrid position :(








BillMorrow wrote:
royco, you screwed up..

now what..?!

1. go to UPS store and try to pick out the employee you left the parcel with and get that person to admit that you DID leave a parcel..

if you can't find that employee, than ask why the UPS store would "receive" such an undocumented packae in the first place and if so, what would be done with it..
NOTHING goes in or out without a scan..,!!!!!

2. IBM and now lenovo can ston wall you pretty good..
big companies get good at that and ibm was no exception..
to be blunt, lenovo screwed you good, if ANY of that trainwreck is true..

what would i do at this point..?
start gathering all the paperwork i can pertaining to the original order and so forth..

then, in the words of the bard, "Sue the *****Expletives removed by Moderator*****"..
in small claims court, where you can get a pretty fair hearing..

many of the thoughts presented in this thread are excellent and i would follow those that can be followed..

FWIW, i had the same experience with a car cover i ordered..
the rep sdaid the same thing.. "just send it back" and i had to go to amex to get credit..

i'm also in a battle with megamacs over a powerbook AC adapter they sold without the line cord..
but i took screenshots of their web page BEFORE they made changes so i THINK i "got 'em!".. :)

you know, when you call these customer reps and you hear "this conversation may be recorded for training purposes"..?
thats the first lie..

but its a good lawyer lie..
"MAY" is key here..
why am i mentioning this, because someone should do a small accessory for computers to record the call YOU make so YOU have a record..
a device that will advise the same tricky lawyer-speak "this casll MAY be recorder......" and if they ask "IS it being recorded, just say "i don't think so"..

your trainwreck is due to an ALMOST impossible situation of a new thinkpad being shipped without battery or AC adapter..
ALMOSE because a similar thing happened to me when i ordered 8 thinkpad A31p's years ago..
all those items are in the accessory box which i think is made up seperate and just added to the thinkpad in packing and not inspected for correct content..

so you have your work cut out for you..
go play Sam Spade and dig for witness's..
and whatever you do, do NOT mention COURT or SUE until you DO sue.. :)
then sue the *****Expletives removed by Moderator*****..
OH!, a hint: venue usually runs where the transaction took place..
or where the defendant is located..
so you have two reasons to make this a local venue..
sue the UPS store as they should be a defendant (local) and lenovo, chrubuck, et al (transaction initiated from your living room, also local)..

caveat: i am NOT a lawyer and this advice is not legal advice.. :twisted:

sorry for the disconnected logic..
without editing, cordially and with sore fingers, i remain:


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 08, 2007 1:47 am 
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royco wrote:
snip..........Even so I ran over the whole thing all over again with the Lenovo rep and got the same reply.......snip


Roy, sorry, I got the impression you talked to two reps. Now your case is even weaker than before. Anyways, I sent you a pm and I truly hope it helps you somehow.

Good Luck!

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With the man who takes me from my horse, and leads me to a bar."
The man who took her off her steed, and stood her to a beer,
Were a bleary-eyed Surveyor and a DRUNKEN ENGINEER.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2007 8:05 pm 
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all i know is that everytime i go to the ups store, i always make sure I have a drop off receipt.

I really find it hard to believe that this story is completely true. Yes lenovo may have messed up, but what are the chances of ups and lenovo messing up concurrently/consecutively?

UPS always gives a drop off receipt. I have dropped off over a 100 packages, and not once they never gave me a receipt


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2007 2:38 pm 
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I feel sorry for your loss, BUT...
Getting a package that is incomplete is not the end of the world, especially when you were told that the missing items would be send later (albeit in another 3-4 weeks).
Going out in a huff and a puff and buying another laptop because you can't wait, sounds a bit surreal, especially since the 'replacement' is not even near your original specs.
You should at least have used that interim-buy and re-sell that once your missing parts have come in.
Then being stupid enough (there, I said what the others are only thinking...) to just do an Elvis (Return to Sender) does also not cut it anymore in this day and age.
Without any documentation whatsoever, you don't have a leg to stand on, regardless of all those phone calls that you made!
In this whole misery, there is only one person to blame and that is YOU.
If you want to absorb the loss of $1600.- as "hopefully a lesson for all, and hopefully Lenovo MAY change its return-policy and how to apply it", that is very noble of you, but it's still stupid and it won't get you your TP or your money back.

PS: after reading this again, I now realize why they did not want me at Diplomat's College. So I became a mainframe programmer instead.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2007 6:41 pm 
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After doing quite a bit of research into the matter, I've come to the conclusion that the bottom line here is that Lenovo reps have a longstanding history of straight up lying to their customers regarding every possible facet of the purchase, ordering or return of a machine from them and that changes NEED to be made in their customer service division so that situations like these don't occur again.

http://www.lenovoblogs.com/insidethebox/?p=84
http://www.consumeraffairs.com/computers/lenovo.html
http://forum.notebookreview.com/showthread.php?t=154317

The above three mentioned websites are just a handful of the internet horror stories related to Lenovo, each one details how Lenovo Customer Service agents have and continue to flat out lie to customers left and right.

I take full responsibility for not looking into the matter more, and blindly trusting what I was told by a customer service agent @ Lenovo, but on the flip side of the coin, no one @ Lenovo takes ANY responsibility or will even ADMIT that this problem could/did occur!

I was indeed stupid for trusting a Lenovo Customer Service Agent over my own gut-feeling of 'something here isn't right with the procedure being outlined.' Nonetheless, I don't feel this excuses Lenovo from having dishonest and/or inept customer service agents who continually give mis-information to customers resulting in all sorts of unnecessarily frustrating situations.

The issue at hand here is horrible customer service: There is obviously a problem with misinformation being continually given to customers and they won't even pull their head out of the sand to acknowledge that problems have happened and will continue to happen. (Not being able to acknowledge a problem means it will never be dealt with)

Even though it would be good customer service to work with a customer that this happened to, it's obvious to me that Lenovo just doesn't care enough to do anything to remedy this situation. (A situation, might I add, that was set into motion when the Lenovo rep I spoke to gave me the initial misinformation.)

At this point I would settle for a simple and genuine APOLOGY and an assurance that measures are being taken to make sure a tragedy of this nature never happens again to anyone else, something which Tony Bumarch & Lenovo simply refuse to do -- Can anyone here honestly tell me that that is asking too much?

And for those of you telling me I should have gotten a receipt from the UPS store - I agree, I should have demanded one - however when I called the UPS store after Mr Bumarch instructed me to do so, I was informed that the UPS store 'official policy' is that packages marked "Return To Sender" are simply placed in the back room of the UPS store and picked up by the UPS driver - there is no receipt generated by the UPS store itself for those sorts of packages... Now if I had known that this horrible situation was going to occur, I would have demanded that the UPS store employee write me a little handwritten note saying "I took possession of this package on X date." However, I've never in my life had a problem with UPS before and really had no reason to distrust them. Much like Thinkpads - I've never had a problem with Customer Support (under IBM) for my Thinkpads, and as such had no reason to distrust them either.

I hate to be so cynical, but the moral of all this seems to be "Distrust everyone you do business with."

Oh, and on a side note to RealBlackStuff: As I've stated numerous times, I was told by the Lenovo Customer Service Agent that the initial tracking number that the package was sent to me with would be the same tracking number used on it's way back to Lenovo - same with insurance. So given that assurance, it left me with a false sense of confidence that there WOULD be a way to track it.

And after waiting 3-4 weeks for the laptop to arrive, not having a power cord or battery to actually make it power on was a painful experience - I simply did not have the patience to wait another 3-4 weeks for the replacement items that should have been included in the initial shipment - I need my laptop for work and having to go without one even longer would have caused further headaches.

It's seems very easy for people to critique how I handled this situation, but I guarantee there are more than a few people out there that if put in the same position as I was and told the exact same mis-information, with the exact same reassurances, they would undoubtedly have succumbed to the same problem.

If you called up your wireless provider and asked what the fee was for roaming abroad and the agent you spoke to said that there was no fee for calls made internationally, and as a result you used your cell phone while traveling - only to find out you had a $10k bill for you from your cell phone company waiting for you when you got back, wouldn't you be upset that the person you spoke with had set into motion a string of events that ended up costing you time and money - a situation which could have been prevented from the get-go if the person you spoke to had simply been knowledgeable about the subject they were acting like an authority figure on?

If you called up your mechanic and asked when you need your four wheel drive transfer case fluid drained/replaced and he quoted you fifty thousand miles, when in reality it was ten thousand miles - and as a result your transfer case was destroyed from neglect, wouldn't you be pretty darn upset with the mechanic who gave you the mis-information that resulted in an expensive piece of your vehicle being destroyed?

Maybe you'd have no *legal* leg to stand on, as you should have done your own research and not trusted someone else's advice, even if they were posing as an authority figure on the matter... but morally speaking is another matter altogether.




RealBlackStuff wrote:
I feel sorry for your loss, BUT...
Getting a package that is incomplete is not the end of the world, especially when you were told that the missing items would be send later (albeit in another 3-4 weeks).
Going out in a huff and a puff and buying another laptop because you can't wait, sounds a bit surreal, especially since the 'replacement' is not even near your original specs.
You should at least have used that interim-buy and re-sell that once your missing parts have come in.
Then being stupid enough (there, I said what the others are only thinking...) to just do an Elvis (Return to Sender) does also not cut it anymore in this day and age.
Without any documentation whatsoever, you don't have a leg to stand on, regardless of all those phone calls that you made!
In this whole misery, there is only one person to blame and that is YOU.
If you want to absorb the loss of $1600.- as "hopefully a lesson for all, and hopefully Lenovo MAY change its return-policy and how to apply it", that is very noble of you, but it's still stupid and it won't get you your TP or your money back.

PS: after reading this again, I now realize why they did not want me at Diplomat's College. So I became a mainframe programmer instead.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2007 7:35 pm 
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I believe the moral of this story is that verbal information from salesmen or CSR's of any entitiy cannot be taken at face value. Many are uninformed or misinformed. Demand written confirmation when your money is at stake. Take the time to check the fine print.

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