Vox Cancellation of service, a warning to read the fine print, and some advice please

Megaton

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Jan 9, 2008
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59
Hi everyone. This is a warning to others to read the fine print of your contract! Apologies for such a long story, but I would appreciate some feedback.

I had a VOX fibre service from 2018-03 until 2019-04, a 200/200 package that included a router from Vox. When I cancelled the service in April 2019 I specifically asked if there would be any penalties or fees, and I received an email saying there wouldn't be, I'm all paid up and everything was fine, so that's where I left it

VOX never contacted me to collect the router, and I didn't realise that I even needed to return it. After nearly a year of this router laying in my cupboard, unused, I gave it to a friend when he needed it, and didn't think of it again.

And then suddenly, in 2020-02, nearly a year later, I get email invoice from Vox for an amount of R2000 "penalty fee for non-returned mikrotik router".

I was quite surprised, queried it, and was informed simply that it was for non-return of equipment. Their answer was simply that equipment remained the property of VOX, as per the contract, which they quoted: "6.6 Ownership of the Equipment vests in the Vox; Equipment is not subject to a rent-to-own contract". I am not sure what "vests in the Vox" means, that's not a typo.

I queried asking what my alternatives were because I no longer have the router, asked why I was never contacted to return the modem. My ticket was closed, "Closed: as per courier feedback there was nobody home upon collection - billing for hardware not returned"

We exchanged a few emails, sometimes a week would pass with no answer to my questions. Last week I received a final demand for the amount, threatening legal action and that I would be liable for legal costs if I don't pay up or return the router. But, I was also told that because I was not home when the courier came to collect, I would have to drop off the router at VOX's offices, in Johannesburg. When I told them I stayed in Cape Town, they said they will email me the address of the Cape Town office.

The email I received back was "no drop off at any of our offices are allowed during lockdown", it didn't present any other alternatives. I asked a few other questions (some of which I have asked multiple times without answer):

- With no way to drop off the modem, will the legal action deadline be extended?
- If I can't recover the router from the friend I gave it to, can I make a payment arrangement to pay over a couple of months (Lockdown has impacted many of us financially)
- What is the current value of the used router accounting for depreciation over a 2+ year period.
- Where is the proof (an email perhaps?) that the courier company arranged for a pickup of the router in the first year after I cancelled the service?

I have yet to receive an answer to these questions, and the deadline for payment is tomorrow.

So, a warning, read the fine print, make sure you return the equipment even if the ISP makes no effort to do so themselves so you don't end up in the same mess as I am in.

Do you think there is anything I could do? They claim I need to return the modem in person because they already attempted a courier, but also says I can't return the modem because they are closed. So my only option is to pay. Should I just pay the amount now to avoid legal proceedings?

Update 2020-06-02 : https://mybroadband.co.za/forum/thr...-and-some-advice-please.1085867/post-25544779
 
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Chris_SA

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Jun 11, 2009
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Interesting response from them. I have been with them for 2 years now (no intention of leaving), but I still have their mikrotik in the cupboard as use own mesh system. I had a look at my contract and actually don't see anything regarding router, other than the clause you mentioned.
 

cavedog

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Oct 19, 2007
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Good luck. Vox reminds me of creditors. If you owe them they WILL hand you over for debt collection. I'm talking from from experience. They did that to me for R600 for an account that they did not cancel. I sent a cancellation email which they never acknowledged or replied too and said that sending an email is not the procedure to follow when cancelling an account and I'm still liable. They would not make any exception no matter what and weren't entertaining an option to meet me half way even though the capped account was completely unused and they had suffered no losses from it.

3 days after that debt collectors started harassing me. The debt has now gone to R750. They added R150 because of debt collection process at which they gave me a deadline before blacklisting me on the credit bureau. I caved and just paid the R750 they wanted from me.

If they were willing to everything in their power to get that money from me for a capped account that was not even used at all and was allegedly suspended after the first non payment so the consecutive months no one could use the account anyways even if anyone wanted too I bet they will leave no stone unturned to recover the money they allege you owe them.
 
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ngoni615

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Jan 1, 2019
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Good luck. Vox reminds me of creditors. If you owe them they WILL hand you over for debt collection. I'm talking from from experience. They did that to me for R600 for an account that they did not cancel. I sent a cancellation email which they never acknowledged or replied too and said that sending an email is not the procedure to follow when cancelling an account and I'm still liable. They would not any exception no matter what and weren't entertaining an option to meet me half way even though the capped account was completely unused and they had suffered no losses from it.

3 days after that debt collectors started harassing me. The debt has now gone to R750. They added R150 because of debt collection process at which they gave me a deadline before blacklisting me on the credit bureau. I caved and just paid the R750 they wanted from me.

If they were willing to everything in their power to get that money from me for a capped account that was not even used at all and was allegedly suspended after the first non payment so the consecutive months no one could use the account anyways even if anyone wanted too I bet they will leave no stone unturned to recover the money they allege you owe them.
So best option for me is to follow every channel possible when it comes to cancelling . Calling them, email, whatsap everything. Just to be sure lol Especially when the time has arrived. I can only cancel after 12 months right? router clawback fees right?
 

xrapidx

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Feb 16, 2007
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37,988
Goodluck - their service is terrible, they promised to refund me for months on end for the last month I wasn't with them - and never did.
 

PsyWulf

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Nov 22, 2006
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Your mistake was not asking about the router when you asked about the fees or penalties - which technically there wasn't so they weren't wrong there. Had they confirmed there that it wasn't needed back you'd be clear
 

mister

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Jul 21, 2008
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They are greedy little bastards... I had an account with them that would not perform as advertised from day 1, and they would not budge on the 30 day's notice cancellation policy. They also threatened me with legal action.
 

mister

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Megaton, ask them what model the router was. Some of them are really cheap...
 

lestoran

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Dec 30, 2007
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Between their incompetence and greed eventually VOX will have pissed of everyone in the country and go bankrupt.

Only then will you be free of them.
 

Megaton

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Jan 9, 2008
Messages
59
Megaton, ask them what model the router was. Some of them are really cheap...
I tried to find the exact one on Scoop, it was one of those small 5 port hAP AC something ones, but it did have gigabit ethernet ports because I was on a 200/200 connection.

The one that looks like it has similar specs on Scoop's website is the hAPac2 Dual Bnad 5 Gigabit Wifi Router, which retails for R1595 including VAT, cheaper if you go with dealer prices, and that's brand new, not a router that's over 2 years old now.
 

PsyWulf

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Nov 22, 2006
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9,036
I tried to find the exact one on Scoop, it was one of those small 5 port hAP AC something ones, but it did have gigabit ethernet ports because I was on a 200/200 connection.

The one that looks like it has similar specs on Scoop's website is the hAPac2 Dual Bnad 5 Gigabit Wifi Router, which retails for R1595 including VAT, cheaper if you go with dealer prices, and that's brand new, not a router that's over 2 years old now.
https://scoop.co.za/mikrotik-hap-ac...bit-1sfp-wifi-router-rb962uigs-5hact2hnt.html ?
 

Megaton

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Jan 9, 2008
Messages
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Your mistake was not asking about the router when you asked about the fees or penalties - which technically there wasn't so they weren't wrong there. Had they confirmed there that it wasn't needed back you'd be clear
Yep, my mistake, I should have been clear, so you learn. I just didn't think of at the time. I certainly didn't expect a penalty fee a year later though!

I am still going to try and see if I can recover the router, but Vox is currently making it impossible for me to return it. Because they insist they sent out a courier and I was not home I have to deliver it to their offices. But right after telling me that they followed up saying I can't do that because their offices are closed due to lockdown, now forcing me to pay.
 

zoozi

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Nov 11, 2019
Messages
409
I still have Vox's router here, cancelled a month ago, haven't heard anything, all during lockdown though.
 
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