Verizon customer charged $1,500 for nonexistent POTS line

A Verizon (NYSE: VZ) customer is going to receive a $1,500 refund from the telco after it charged every month for over five years for a POTS line that she thought she cancelled.

Lauraine Hollyer, according to a report in, asked Verizon to turn off the landline voice service in 2000. She and her husband purchased a second line in the early 1990s -- a time when cell phones were still an expensive option for the mainstream public.

When her two children went to college in 1999 and 2001 they both had cell phones so there was no longer a need for a second POTS line.

However, when the telco updated its billing format in 2010, Verizon's computer system started charging her $26 a month for a second POTS voice service that did not exist.

The woman only realized the charges when she was assessing why her Verizon bill was so high.   

"When I was paying the April 2015 bill, I looked to see why my bills were so high," Hollyer said. "I realized that my bill included a charge for message rate service and line maintenance of $25.94."

Hollyer actually did file suit in small claims court but filed it in the wrong jurisdiction and never refiled.

A Verizon spokesman told FierceTelecom that the company was happy to provide her with a refund. 

"The Verizon representatives she spoke with told her that they would issue credit back to the time she identified the issue, which is very fair," the spokesman said. 

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This article was updated on Aug. 26 with additional information from Verizon.