Maine consumers who have had issues with satellite radio company SiriusXM may be eligible for restitution from the company. The New York company has agreed to pay $3.8 million to 46 states, including Maine, and the District of Columbia as part of a settlement over claims that the company engaged in misleading advertising and billing practices.
According to Maine Attorney General Janet Mills, the multi-state investigation focused on consumer complaints involving, “difficulty canceling contracts; cancellation requests that were not honored; misrepresentations that the consumer’s SiriusXM service would be canceled and not renewed; contracts that were automatically renewed without consumers’ notice or consent; unauthorized fees; higher, unanticipated rates after a low introductory rate; and SiriusXM failing to provide timely refunds.”
As part of the settlement, SiriusXM is also required to pay restitution to eligible customers who have complaints about problems addressed by the settlement. That’s in addition to the $3.8 million SiriusXM will pay the states in penalties.
Tim Feeley, a spokesman for Attorney General Mills, said Maine’s share of the settlement is $15,000.
To be considered for restitution, Maine consumers should follow these steps:
- File a complaint about eligible issues (see above) that happened from July 28, 2008, to December 4, 2014, involving an identifiable loss that has not been previously resolved
- Send complaint by mail to SiriusXM, P.O. Box 33059, Detroit, MI 48232-5059 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Contact SiriusXM directly before May 3, 2015
Consumers in California, Hawaii, Wyoming, and New York are not part of the settlement.
SiriusXM will also make “significant changes” to how it does business, under the terms of the settlement.
Specifically, Sirius XM agrees to:
- Clearly and conspicuously disclose all terms and conditions at the point of sale, such as billing frequency, term length, automatic renewal date, and cancellation policy.
- Make no misrepresentations about the available plans in advertisements.
- Provide advance notice via mail or email about upcoming automatic renewals for plans lasting longer than six months.
- Revise the cancellation procedures to make it easier for consumers to cancel.
- Prohibit incentive compensation for customer service representatives based solely on “saves,” or retaining current customers who attempt to cancel.