Verizon sued over N.J. complaints

The State of New Jersey has filed a lawsuit against Verizon Communications, charging that the company's marketing and other aspects of its FiOS broadband and TV services were deceptive. Multichannel News reports that the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs, which has collected 266 complaints related to FiOS so far, says Verizon misrepresented its prices, charge consumers for activation fees that were supposed to be waived, and did not make good on offers of flat-screen TVs and other gifts that its used to entice customers to sign up for FiOS.

Verizon's New Jersey division issued a statement that was curiously free of defensive posturing, saying that "issues raised by the attorney general today are related primarily to the start-up of the FiOS business nearly two years ago in New Jersey and have been largely addressed."

Verizon marketing practices in general have been a target of complaints before, notably from cable TV companies who said the telco was unfairly using information about customers who were switching away from Verizon in order to retain those customers. If Verizon loses the New Jersey suit, the company ultimately could pay civil penalties and other fines worth thousands of dollars per violation.

For more:
- Multichannel News has this story

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