NEW ALBANY, IN (WAVE) - Do you think your Insight bill is too high? Maybe
not after you hear from a small business that claims Insight Communications
overcharged it thousands of dollars over several years and wouldn't right the
Insight said it had to search back through its records to see what went
wrong and is now offering thousands of dollars in refunds.
At TIMCO Marine in New Albany, internet service keeps the business afloat, from
accounting to online orders. But TIMCO says its bottom line was being run
aground by an Insight Communications billing error that went on for almost a
TIMCO employee Tina Martin said the problem came to light in February 2012 in a
conversation with an Insight representative.
"He basically said, ‘You have two internets there?' and I said, ‘No,'"
Martin recalled. "And he goes, ‘It looks like you're being double billed.'"
Martin and the small business have been fighting the corporate giant to get the
money back ever since. Martin dug through TIMCO's records and found Insight
billed them $199.90 for business internet all the way back to 2003. Martin said
that's double the actual price of $99.95, which would mean TIMCO endured 109
months of paying two $99.95 charges for just one internet line.
Martin said the overcharge adds up to more than $10,000.
"They offered one year free internet, which is $1,200 dollars,"
Martin said. "I said, ‘No.'"
TIMCO's president, Tim Swinney, wrote emails and letters to Insight and its
parent company Time Warner Cable, telling them their $1,200 offer was
unacceptable. Martin said Insight told TIMCO to take the offer or leave it.
"'How are you gonna get us to pay?' That's basically what they said, ‘How
are you gonna get us to pay?'" Martin said. "And we were at our wits
The WAVE 3 Troubleshooter Department went back and forth with Insight/Time
Warner Cable for more than a month, trying to uncover why the company was
offering just a fraction of what TIMCO said it was owed. Spokesperson Dan
Ballister sent a statement that said their records showed there was a billing
error, but it did not go on as long as TIMCO claimed.
"There was a work order change on the account in July 2008 which is when
the billing error began," Ballister wrote.
Before that, Ballister said, "(TIMCO's) rate was higher because construction
costs were included to cover the costs of bringing service to the
building." Those construction costs were never noted on TIMCO's bills.
Other companies in the area were charged the lower rate during that same time
period. Ballister said that is irrelevant.
"Business rates, like residential rates, can vary from location to
location," Ballister wrote. "We have different rates for different
In response to questions about the TIMCO situation, Insight initially upped its
offer from $1,200 to more than $4,300 in credit. That still didn't satisfy
"I don't believe you can do business like this," Martin said. "I
don't believe you can stay in business when you treat people like this."
Swinney also said he was angry with Insight's reluctance to refund the full
amount that TIMCO claims it is owed.
"Frustrated is the best single word to describe how TIMCO feels regarding
Insight Communications lack of adequate response and unwillingness to refund
the amount it overcharged our company," Swinney wrote in a statement.
Insight finally relented.
"Insight takes customer concerns seriously," Ballister wrote in a
follow up statement. "We feel it's important to conclude this matter and
will do so in the coming days by issuing a credit for the service amount in
Ballister also asked consumers to help Insight monitor billing irregularities
that may result in overcharges.
"We feel that there is a shared responsibility between our company and a
customer to ensure the accuracy of billing," Ballister said.
Tuesday, May 21 2013 6:05 PM EDT2013-05-21 22:05:26 GMT
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