Verizon Wireless to Pay Up to $90 Million in Refunds

By Alex Johnston
Alex Johnston
Alex Johnston
October 4, 2010 Updated: October 1, 2015

A Verizon  Wireless store that people are walking past in New York City. Verizon Wireless said it would pay as much as $90 million to cell phone customers who were wrongly charged for Internet use.  (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
A Verizon Wireless store that people are walking past in New York City. Verizon Wireless said it would pay as much as $90 million to cell phone customers who were wrongly charged for Internet use. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
Verizon Wireless said it would pay as much as $90 million to cell phone customers who were wrongly charged for Internet use and data sessions, according to reports.

The move is one of the largest refunds ever in telecommunications industry. More than 15 million customers will receive extra payments between $2 and $6, the company said in a statement. Customers who are no longer Verizon customers will receive a check.

The refund will reimburse customers who did not have data plans and their phones’ built-in software accidentally engaged in activities that cost them.

"As we reviewed customer accounts, we discovered that over the past several years approximately 15 million customers who did not have data plans were billed for data sessions on their phones that they did not initiate," Verizon said in a company statement.

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission in the past three years received complaints from Verizon customers who said they were billed extra for Internet access and data usage.

Sources close to the settlement told the New York Times that the total refunds will be more than $50 million.

“Verizon Wireless values our customer relationships and we always want to do the right thing for our customers,” Mary Coyne, deputy general counsel for Verizon, stated, according to the Times.

Verizon Wireless is a joint venture between Verizone Communications Inc. and U.K.'s Vodafone Plc, and the second-largest wireless carrier in the United States behind AT&T Wireless.