Pacific Bell/AT&T Landline class action settlementA federal judge on Friday preliminarily approved a class action lawsuit settlement with AT&T Inc. over allegations it illegally billed thousands of landline customers for third-party services they didn’t order, a practice known in the industry as “cramming.”

The AT&T cramming settlement will resolve a 2009 class action lawsuit, titled Nwabueze v. AT&T Inc., that alleges AT&T purchased accounts receivables from other billers, billed its customers for third-party services, took a cut of the collected money and gave the remaining money to the original services. According to the class action lawsuit, however, AT&T had no system in place to make sure the third-party charges were legitimate. This allowed companies to piggyback onto AT&T’s bills just by using a customer’s phone number, without having to prove that the customer actually owed them money.

AT&T denies wrongdoing, despite eliminating third-party billing on January 1, 2011.

The practice of cramming has come under fire in recent years, leading the FCC in April 2012 to pass new regulations requiring telephone companies to inform customers of their right to block third-party charges from their bills. The FCC also mandates that third-party charges appear separate from the telephone company’s charges on bills.

“Most consumers don’t know when there are crammed charges on their bills,” the FCC said in a statement. “Crammers often avoid detection by charging a small amount to each consumer — as little as $1.99 per month — or describing charges in a manner that makes them appear to be for services from the phone company.”

Under the AT&T landline cramming class action settlement, AT&T customers who were billed for third-party services from 2005 to the present will be able to file claims to receive a refund. Current AT&T customers will receive the refunds as phone-bill credits, while former customers will receive checks.

Details on how to file a claim for the AT&T third-party billing class action lawsuit settlement can be found in our Open Class Action Lawsuits section.

The AT&T Landline Cramming Class Action Lawsuit Settlement case is Nwabueze v. AT&T Inc., et al., Case No. 9-cv-01529, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California

Plaintiffs are represented by Jeffrey F. Keller of Keller Grover LLP, John G. Jacobs and Bryan G. Kolton of Jacobs Kolton Chtd. and Michael W. Sobol and Jahan C. Sagafi of Leiff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein LLP.

UPDATE: The AT&T landline class action settlement was approved at the Final Fairness Hearing but settlement distribution was delayed by an appeal filed by a single Class Member in December 2013. That appeal was voluntarily dismissed in March 2014, allowing the Settlement Administrator to begin processing claims and payments.

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Please note: Top Class Actions is not a settlement administrator or law firm. Top Class Actions is a legal news source that reports on class action lawsuits, class action settlements, drug injury lawsuits and product liability lawsuits. Top Class Actions does not process claims and we cannot advise you on the status of any class action settlement claim. You must contact the settlement administrator or your attorney for any updates regarding your claim status, claim form or questions about when payments are expected to be mailed out.

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83 Comments

  • Jennifer January 14, 2013

    I never received any type of notice from AT&T about filing a claim for the AT&T third-party billing class action lawsuit settlement. I distinctly remember having issues with AT&T (then Bellsouth) over the years while I was a landline customer about third party billing charges on my phone bill. How do I become part of the lawsuit? Any help is appreciated. Thank you.

    • Brenda Fulmer February 21, 2014

      Since 2006 I’ve had at&t homeline. I would like to be part of law suit.

  • Angie January 15, 2013

    ydep3

  • Christine January 15, 2013

    I have never recieved any type of notification either. I have, however, questioned ATT many times over the inconsistancy and constant increases on my bills.

  • PABLO January 20, 2013

    How does one become part of this class action lawsuit.

  • Lynetta Haynes-Olive January 21, 2013

    My monthly bills have continued to increase with no explaination or comments. I have found it difficult to understand and am very unhappy with their service.

  • Lynetta Haynes-Olive January 21, 2013

    I have continue to receive billings with increases and no comment or explaination. I wish to become a part of this lawsuit.

  • Susan January 22, 2013

    I had this happen to my phone bill once a year since 2005. I usually showed up on the statement between Sept to December.

  • barry January 22, 2013

    it looks as if in April they will have more info on how to be apart of this class action

  • lnda lawson February 15, 2013

    My husband and I stopped ALL contact with AT&T because of this billing issue. It took over three months and the help of our techie son to track these charges down. We now let everyone we know about the problem and how inflexible AT&T is to help remediate it.

  • Brian Patrick Fromme February 20, 2013

    AT&T is till double billing, engages in false advertising regarding Internet speeds and has consistently strong armed us into keeping their service. I’m kind of glad we did for the time being. I can now go back and look at I cloud updates (I have them under several accts) and compare the Internet usage per update and compare what AT&T has on record for billing, vs what the usage was on my wifi at home and on the satellite card. I now have comcast Internet and am in the process of still collecting the data just for us alone. Don’t mess with unemployed tech geeks who have nothing better to do than look over my bills and compare usage on line vs AT&T records vs wifi and satellite cards. I’m still collecting data and could use assistance in ensuring the info gets to where it needs to go.

  • Al April 29, 2013

    n April they will have more info on how to be apart of this class action

  • angela April 29, 2013

    i ask att line line to put a restriction on my home phone i didnt want long distance nor wanted the 900 numbers or anything else on my bill. the next month i got my phone bill ot was 397 ad some cents. i called them and ask why this was on my bill because i had a restriction on my line. The answer was some how that company came thru and you will have to pay for it. and after i paid them 230.00 plus my bill they still turn my phone off because they wanted it in full, plus my other bill and i was on life line.

  • Frankie Hansford April 30, 2013

    I deffently want to be a part of this lawsuit!!! My bill is never the same with AT&T. But it does go up every month and nothing changes when you call. They just ignore you. so count me IN!!!!

  • stephanie May 1, 2013

    yes give me my money when you get it im needing it right away. harrrrrry up and settle love pay backs.

  • Peggy May 1, 2013

    I find it interesting that, yesterday, I received a card in the mail regarding the fact that I am a member of this class action suit.
    today I got my bill from ATT and my wireless rates have been raised by $4.00 per month.. Just who is winning and who is losing out here!

  • julane decker May 2, 2013

    att kept billing me for global-tel which is long distance from a prison where my son is incarcerated. This was since 2005 thru 2012. I then got charter and had to go to global tel ad pay a bill each month. When the bill was on Att it was always around $15.00 for 15 minutes. I now get 15 minutes for about $2.47 a month. Since I am on social security, what a savings this is. All parents who have someone incarcerated in Calif. should make sure they get their money back. What a rip off. Carma bites you att.

  • lashonda May 7, 2013

    I had a phone with at&t but now your just telling me that the reson for all the high bill that did not make any census to me and now I now what that was alout I fell beatter now that I now.but there needs to be a nuther way to tell if someone is useing or open a acct in your name think you for all your help. Thank you agine

  • glyn forbes May 8, 2013

    received a card in mail. just responding.
    EDITOR’S NOTE – Glyn, we are not settlement administrators and do not process claims. You must contact the settlement administrator (if there is a settlement) for any assistance filing a claim or to request a claim form.

  • Louis Dean May 10, 2013

    Received a 3 X 5 card in the mail, and am just responding

  • Karen May 10, 2013

    Received post card today.

  • PALMER May 10, 2013

    happy to know that it happened to others not just me . maybe something can be done about some of these other companies. att finally some carma can you hear me now?

  • delagum May 10, 2013

    I was also part of the AT&T scam but years ago. When I started noticing an inconsistency on my phone bills I called AT&T and had my phone disconnected. I am now reliant on my cell phone and Magic Jack. Can’t be any happier!

  • Michael Brasher May 10, 2013

    Its things like this happening every where,with all venders.Watch out people.Check every invoice and compare it with last months.Thanks to the “Watch Dogs”……..

  • Obrey Smith May 12, 2013

    my name is obrey smith i received a notice of this class action lawsuit I am so glad the some one is doing something about it, I know att has been third party billing me.

  • Obrey Smith May 12, 2013

    How do i become part of this lawsuit.

  • Rodney Y Waldrop May 13, 2013

    Received post card in mail last week and I’m responding.

  • JJABRS May 14, 2013

    Guys – just DUMP AT&T, that’s the only way to send a message to a unscrupulous and profit hungry organization.

    Switch TMobile – great network and great prices.

  • JJABRS May 14, 2013

    BTW you can KEEP you number when you switch -it’s easy.

    Better yet use Vonage or MagicJack if you don’t need a cellphone.

    Steer clear of AIOWireless

  • Bharti Patel May 14, 2013

    I am so glad the some one is doing something about it, had continue to receive billings with increases and no comment or explaination than finally disconnect, and internet facility has also same problem,AT&T is till double billing, engages in false advertising regarding Internet speeds and has consistently strong armed us into keeping their service. I wish somebody sue against the AT & T internet service. Most people have been tired for this money making organizaation.

  • mary see May 15, 2013

    How do i fill a claim?it say’s there is a claim form here but I don’t see it

  • debra jones May 15, 2013

    U verse is even worse. Still being charged for U verse for TV and don’t even have it. Att needs to get a new CEO, or put someone who knows what their doing in charge!!! How do they come up with these extra charges constantly.

  • hi kimberly ladom May 16, 2013

    i received my card and send it back they gave it back to me i do’nt understand whats going on

  • rose cramblet-moore May 18, 2013

    do we really expect a monetary reimbursement of any kind, really.

  • larry cottingham May 20, 2013

    I received a card from you about a third party settlement. I have no idea what this is about. EDITOR’S NOTE – TOP CLASS ACTIONS IS NOT A SETTLEMENT ADMINISTRATOR AND DOES NOT PROCESS CLAIMS. YOU MUST CONTACT THE SETTLEMENT ADMINISTRATOR TO UPDATE YOUR ADDRESS. ONLY THE SETTLEMENT ADMINISTRATOR CAN UPDATE YOUR INFORMATION OR ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS ABOUT YOUR CLAIM.

  • Mary Lafontaine May 20, 2013

    I do not understand what this mean please explain it to me Thank you

  • Betty Obrian May 20, 2013

    Your process is to complicated ,if they owe me money, you have my address, just mail it to me! EDITOR’S NOTE – TOP CLASS ACTIONS IS NOT A SETTLEMENT ADMINISTRATOR AND DOES NOT PROCESS CLAIMS. YOU MUST CONTACT THE SETTLEMENT ADMINISTRATOR TO UPDATE YOUR ADDRESS. ONLY THE SETTLEMENT ADMINISTRATOR CAN UPDATE YOUR INFORMATION OR ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS ABOUT YOUR CLAIM.

  • gloria williams May 21, 2013

    i been charge over the years what do i need to do to be a part, of this lawsuit.

  • edward m gregory May 22, 2013

    dropped att march 2011, can i be elegible

  • james blair May 23, 2013

    how do I become apart of this law suite

  • j#39 James Blair May 23, 2013

    How do I become part of this law suit. I never did received any type of notice from AT&T about filing a claim for the AT&T third party billing class action lawsuit settlement. I had issues with ATT&T Internet computer services thats still in my apt. Any help is appreciated. Thank You.

  • j#39 James Blair May 23, 2013

    concerning the class action lawsuit

  • daniel lewis May 23, 2013

    i will happilly get involved with lawsuit. i knew they were ripping me off for years. when i tried to resolve billing issues, they sent it to collection agency. there name is bay area collections. please send me forms to get into this lawsuit.

  • Lamont May 28, 2013

    To trust a company of this magnitude is very appalling to here of such practices, especially when you’ve been with a entity as long as I have. Compensation is very much so warranted with interest.

  • Mary E. Reece wife June 3, 2013

    I did receive my card throught mail, about the law suit. My Husband has passed away. If you dont mine send it in my name. Mary E. Reece . We had good service with Bell South, and ATT . We got a better deal with the Company we have it with now.

  • Sherry Greene June 4, 2013

    received the card in James Kenneth Greene Jr name ( my husband) but he lost the postcard. please email me the link to file a claim form. Thanks. Sherry wGreene

  • kathystevenson June 7, 2013

    just received my class action settlement in the mail in April 2013.

    • wanda evonne bridges June 4, 2014

      has att already begun sending settlements out and if so please send mine to po box 7601 oxford, Alabama, as I don’t have acess to my e_mails. my phone number is 256_525_5927 thankyou!

      • wanda evonne bridges June 4, 2014

        when shall I receive this settlement?

  • Salmon Ela June 18, 2013

    I have not received any notices from AT&T, but will not be a part of the at all.
    AT&T has always been a great phone company, still is my phone company of choice and for the service they provide, they should really be charging double what they do.
    You do what you think is right, of course, but AT&T ROCKS!

  • Lillie Walker June 29, 2013

    does my sister need form to fill out. She needs to update
    her address: 2891 Sprindale rd. sw apt303
    Atlanta, Ga 30315

    she doesn’t have an email acct.

  • marcia sweatt July 16, 2013

    i have not recieved any money yet my phone number these charges 870-572-9150968 and 870-572-9183968

  • john s July 22, 2013

    I got into several heated discussions with at&t representatives. I signed up for a free long distance service plan that never took affect. I called at&t to complain but they told me I would have to take the matter up with this third party billing company. By the time the dust settled at&t said I owed them 1500.00. This ended up going on my credit report as a collection. AT&T ON YOUR SIDE

  • LESLIE WRIGHT August 17, 2013

    Issues with AT&T bills keeps going up with no explanation. And when I was slightly behind they moved the due date sooner which really screwed me up. So many charges of $25.00 or $30.00 due to them temp disconnecting my internet,.Tried to get rid of the phone completely but they never followed thru with my request.Nebver received a notice either. My friend just received a letter that she was overcharged 700.00 and they will send her a check. Don’t want my account credited. Want $ back or they just collect interest on the money owed to US! Please tell me how to find out if I am part of this. Thank you.

  • Kim August 19, 2013

    Got my card and paperwork to figure what is owed. When do they distribute the money

  • Kim August 19, 2013

    Filled out all the paperwork they sent to figure out what was owed waiting for check. Hell will freeze first.

  • tony shears September 4, 2013

    my third party charges is 267.74

  • Rich September 11, 2013

    From Oct,2009 until Dec,2011 they billed me for all sorts of services I never authorized. They got me for 245.90 and I hope to get it ALL back. Corporate greed, the bane of our society.

  • sheila madison September 27, 2013

    l will like my whole Refund because l have been with ATT Company For seven year. The amount is not clear until I receive my paperwork in 75 days.

  • Mary J. McLaughlin October 6, 2013

    10/5/2013
    I have my phone and Internet with AT&T.
    Great Service from both.
    Mary J. McLaughlin
    1121 Back Bay Drive 116
    Newport Beach, Ca 92660
    mclaughlin1918@sbcglobal.net

  • Linda Williams October 7, 2013

    At&t is very guilty for over charging its customers. I had to cancel the service because each month my charges would go up until I just could not afford the service anymore. I never paid the price I was quote it was always at least 50% more than what I was quoted.

  • teneka ray October 14, 2013

    They have overcharged me so. I had to close my acct.

  • Willie E Burleson Sr October 19, 2013

    I have used ATT since 1993 at Two (2) Different Address and each time I submit a claim form the tell me something is wrong. I always make copies of all of my information and I don’t agree with them . I think that they just stall to kill time.

  • Edward M. Bolchalk October 26, 2013

    been with att&t since 1988. I know I was over charged. Received the card in the mail today, and at&t says they are running behind to send me my information, it will be way past the deadline? What should I do?

  • Bettey Craft October 27, 2013

    I am having problems with there third party billing although my billing was the U-verse TV and internet, I received a bad bill and I almost paid it but I knew that my bill was not what they requested me to pay I stopped payment, and requested a bill summary to show me how much I needed to paid, and cancel my service because we could not come to any understanding of how much I really owned AT&T. I had AT&T U-verse and internet for several years;in 2009 I started experiencing problems with the TV and internet this cause me to change my service plan AT&T began to bill me for service that I did not have, my plan was $56 it became double so I cancel my service and returned my equipment in about a 3 month period my bill was $800 plus, I call them repeatedly attempting to correct my bill with know success. There was a Class Action lawsuit was filled that I was apart of . I notice that when I went to get a cell phone from AT&T I still had that large bill on there files. This bill in accordance with the Class Action lawsuit should not be on there records, I had paid my last bill and returned there equipment, so why will there still be a bill. My problems with that service was when I watch a channel for several hours, the channel will freeze and then go black and the same with the internet.

  • Patricia Oakley Beas October 29, 2013

    Hello,
    I have already mail in my claim form,
    How long would I have to wait till I receive a refund check…?
    Also, will intrest. or, late fee’s be included in check…?
    Thank you

  • George R. Davis II November 8, 2013

    Received billing summary of third party charges and credits on your AT&T landline telephone number (BTN): 7402827547525. The net charges to my account were from American Select/USBI-Clearinghouse in a total amount of $15.19. I’m questioning lately from Clearinghouse with non-stop e-mail of you’ve won the lottery, like spam mail??? Thank you

  • George R. Davis II November 8, 2013

    I’ve been billed with no accuracy with two accounts for the past few years and my bill keeps going up on both accounts: Phone/internet U-Verse that i’m have been close to canceling my service as a full-time student. I’ve made several complaints about my bill not being combined into one. I, don’t know exact how much i may been taken for granyed until hearing so many people in my community upset with the billing department and extra charges. We have enough scams going on with identity thefts???????????

  • Tonya s Elliott November 30, 2013

    I’m. Just wondering when the overcharged people will begin receiving monies due to us?

    • Gwendolyn. Daniels July 15, 2014

      When will we get our money

  • Shaneeka Montford December 20, 2013

    I would like to know when calling in to ATT they never said anything in regards to any third party billing. I would like to have all of my money back.

  • Granny R. December 23, 2013

    Yes, I received the card in the mail and I send in the claim form , now waiting for the check.

  • Angela D. Wilson March 6, 2014

    To whom it may concern:

    I called AT&T, late in February 2014, and I told them that I sent a billing form, late last year, 2013. I saw on that form, before I sent it, that I would be receiving at check in late January 2014. I didn’t receive it. So I called late in January, AT&T, and I was told that they had to wait for the Court to approve of sending the checks. I as I stated called late in February, and I was told that the Court approved of sending out the checks, and that I should go on-line to see when the checks would be sent out. I don’t see on-line when the checks will come.

    Very truly yours,

    Angela D. Wilson

  • 7850 April 29, 2014

    I constantly was on the phone with ATT about my bill being so expensive. They lied and told me something else. I have been with att all my life trusted this company. I want back everything they taken from me. I trusted ATT. Shame on this company.

  • Gladys Johnson May 1, 2014

    Where’s the money, I’ve been waiting to get paid. I wish I could pay my bill the way they keep us waiting.
    Mother Johnson

  • Top Class Actions June 10, 2014

    UPDATE: The AT&T landline class action settlement was approved at the Final Fairness Hearing but settlement distribution was delayed by an appeal filed by a single Class Member in December 2013. That appeal was voluntarily dismissed in March 2014, allowing the Settlement Administrator to begin processing claims and payments.

  • Top Class Actions June 10, 2014

    Important Alert from the Settlement Administrator:

    The Garden City Group, the claims administrator for the Nwabueze v. AT&T Inc. settlement, has recently learned that individuals representing themselves to be associated with the Nwabueze v. AT&T Inc. settlement have contacted one or more class members and sought to obtain full social security numbers and bank account information. Please be advised that these individuals are not acting on behalf of the Nwabueze v. AT&T Inc. settlement. No one associated with the Nwabueze v. AT&T Inc. settlement will ever request that you provide information regarding your full social security number or personal bank account. Therefore, please be careful about releasing your full social security number and bank account numbers to others.

    If you receive a call requesting such information or if you are concerned about a call you receive, please write down the phone number and contact the Garden City Group at Nwabueze v. AT&T, Inc. c/o GCG, P.O. Box 35045, Seattle, WA 98124 or by email at info@ATTthirdpartybillingsettlement.com.

  • rhonda June 13, 2014

    I mailed my card back in on 10 25 2013 and still looking for my check not only that they billed me for something that I had know idear that was on their and they turned my internet off and left my phone on called and ask why they turn off internet and not phone they said that’s the way they do it

  • sue coleston June 25, 2014

    i want to know are the check come out i dont want my moneyto go on no phone bill

  • Rachelle Price July 9, 2014

    I filled out my information on line in 2012. I want to know when are we going to get paid. I have not received any information regarding when the settlement checks are going to be sent out. I do not want my money added as a phone credit on my phone bill. I want my money sent directly to me because that’s money that I could be using toward bills and household expenses and food. Att should pay for overcharging the customers. I do not like paying high phone bills. I am unemployed and I need all the money that I can get. In addition to paying phone bills I also pay utility bills, cell phone,internet, mortgage,auto insurance. They need to hurry this along we consumers should not have to wait anymore than we should for this money. Sincerely, Rachelle Price

  • H.E. Pierce July 14, 2014

    My mother is a long time ATT customer and in June of this year she received a credit for almost $21,000 and contacted the customer support that there was a problem with her bill. She was informed that she was part of the class action lawsuit and that she would not have to do anything so now she is getting bill showing that she is paying some company called GPSPS, INC., another long distance service that she never authorized. She currently has ALL DISTANE with ATT, so why would she add another service. Both last month and in the month of July she has had extra long distance charges which she never made, we want to know if she is entitled to the moneys owed to her for services she over paid for and if not how to resolve these issues…

  • Annette August 15, 2014

    I filed a claim but never got the check? How do I follow-up.

  • Ralph Smith October 1, 2014

    I have a charge support 15.00 per month since Jan2014 that I did not ask for.I think it,s called Cramming.
    When I called 866 294 3464 that they would only reimburse me for 3 month’s and I half to wait for it.
    What happened to the other 6 months and that they might make me lee the service until Dec.
    Im looking for help in this matter.I have never used this service and didn’t know I had it.
    My bill Goes Up an Down Like A Rubber Ball!!!!!

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