misleading alarm monitoring company practices


Old 12-11-01, 11:47 AM
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misleading alarm monitoring company practices

I am in a quandry. I am a new homeowner.

I paid for one year of alarm monitoring services from a local alarm monitoring company about a year ago. I want to switch to another alarm company after what I thought my one-year service contract is up. The alarm company said I signed a 72 month contract. I do not recall the representative telling me that when he came to check the wires last year. I do not even have a record of those terms. I have called many times to speak to a representative on this matter. So far, I have not gotten a single response.

I have heard from many people that some Alarm companies have mislead many homeowners into signing these kind of agreements.

I would have never committed to a 72 month agreement term, had the representative told me upfront. Can you imagine still paying for telephone, cable, electric, and gas service years after one moves? This is pretty outrageous.

I live in New Jersey. Is there some Consumer Protection law that anyone is aware of? Has anyone else gone through this?

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Old 12-14-01, 02:02 PM
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Ask the vender to produce a copy of the signed agreement.
Old 12-14-01, 03:51 PM
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The contract which you should have read should have the amount of time in print. If it does then you are possibly bound by the terms. If their is not a written contract then they are possibly in violation of the oral contract laws which vary state to state. If their is not a written contract then how do they know you agreed to it?

Visit WWW.freeadvice.com post in the forums for free legal advice. They should be helpful. A suggestion for a quick reply is to keep you post short and include the information ommited here in regards to whether you signed a contract......or if it is an oral contract.
Old 12-26-01, 03:22 PM
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I agree with Ron. Ask them to produce the contract where you signed agreeing to the long term. I live in NJ also, and my company offers one year contracts. Good luck

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Old 01-27-02, 06:59 PM
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Hi, I am sorry to hear of your problems. I am an exec in the security alarm industry and have heard of this happening many times before. Even though the company may be reputable and honest, many times a sale person does not want to draw attention to the small print that binds you to a long term contract. Most companies will require a 24 to 60 month agrement depending on the company and their plans with your account. Back to your problem, in most cases the company should be willing to work with you one way or another. Here are a few common options that should be available to you. 1. If you have moved from your home has the home been sold to another party, if so it should be possible for the new home owner to assume the balance of contract. Most homeowners are willing to do this although it should be negotiated with the sale of the house whenever possible. 2. Many alarm companies will allow you to purchase a system for your new home and transfer the balance of contract to the new home. 3. If the system is a wireless system it should be possible to have thje system moved to yo9ur new home. I hope this info helps in some way, if none of these options are available try negotiating with the company for a buyout settlement.
Old 01-27-02, 07:57 PM
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Thank you for the all the replies.

I sent a letter asking the company to reproduce the contract but I did not hear from them nor receive another invoice. I also noticed that the lights on the panel of the system are off. So it seems that they have cancelled the service with the central monitoring system. I hope that that is the end of it.

I have seen other alarm companies aknowledge, in bold-face type, in their advertisements stating the contractual obligations of time. Those are probably better companies to deal with.

This serves as a lesson for all to be very careful of the services and company that a homeowner will encounter.
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