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AT&T Thinks You Should Pay Their Disability Claims when TECH gets injured on your property

submitted on March 4, 2010 by orangearrows in "Member's Lounge"
http://consumerist.com/2010/03.....laims.html


LINK to the CONSUMERIST

Not only does AT&T give you service you can't use and then continue to bill for it, they also apparently want you to pay the disability claim when one of their employees injures himself on your property.

A few weeks ago, an AT&T tech arrived at a customer's Chicago-area home to hook up his new phone service. And in spite of the fact that it hadn't snowed in several days and the owner hires a snow-removal service for the property, the tech slipped and broke his leg while walking down a paved path.

Two weeks later, the owner gets a letter from Sedgwick Claims Management Services, which administers AT&T's workers' compensation program.

"Our initial investigation indicates that you may be at fault for these damages," read the letter. "The current extent of these damages to our client is currently being determined but to date, we have paid $2,761.07 in disability."

Not surprisingly, the building's owner was less than pleased.

"I never heard of such a thing where they would sue a customer," He said. "You do everything you're supposed to do and this still happened."

The owner decided to contact WGN Radio's Problem Solver program, who then attempted to contact a rep for AT&T.

Lo and behold, a few days later he gets another letter from Sedgwick. This one is much different in tone.

"After further investigation... we will discontinue our pursuit with regards to subrogation of this claim... Please accept our sincere apologies for any inconvenience this may have caused."

Responding to the radio show, a rep for AT&T had this to say:
"AT&T has policies and procedures in place to address workers' compensation and disability matters, and we work with all parties involved to review individual claims. In this particular instance, proper protocols were not followed."

What do you think? Is the homeowner financially responsible for any injuries the tech might have suffered? If not, at what point — what kind of incident would have to occur — for you to hold the homeowner liable?

Snow shoveling rules confuse homeowner after AT&T threat [Chicago Tribune]
        

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  Comments
  • 54715
    pablos17
    deity
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    Posted by pablos17 on March 4, 2010
    [reply] 4 0
    That' s a bunch of BS. I see stupid lawsuits like these all the time at my job. Civil prosecution is taken too far at times to recover money at the expense of someone else who is not really at fault. I have been working on a case where someone slipped and fell at a business and is now trying to sue even after having been paid through worker's comp. He was also told by an employee to not use the entryway that was icy. Plus, the guy shouldn't have even been working because he had been experiencing fainting spells and even driving a semi while on Rx drugs. Some people -j***! Confused
  • 54719
    Solstice
    professor
    1 6 2
    11 4 1
    Posted by Solstice on March 4, 2010
    [reply] 5 0
    Stupidity like this is why I carry home owners/renters insurance combined with an umbrella.

    My insurance company sends a mouthpiece instead of me dealing with this kind of hoo-hah.
  • 54727
    WhattaDealBlog
    professor
    1
    1
    Posted by WhattaDealBlog on March 4, 2010
    [reply] 5 0
    I don't think it is any real shock. Think about it how many federal, state, regulatory, and administrative fees are you charged on each phone bill?

    Our local water department got caught with some minor EPA violation, so of course they just got a rate hike approved to pay for the fees, and needed fixes. It would be insane to believe that the company may have to use some of its profits from the past decade or so they ignored the problem before getting caught by the EPA.

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