The suit in Cal. Superior Court, L.A., (Case BC303355) by the Foundation for Taxpayer & Consumer Rights charges Cingular and its collective owners SBC and BellSouth owe consumers restitution and damages for allegedly locking customers into long-term service contracts with large termination penalties while it knew that its network lacked the coverage and capacity needed to keep pace with the growth in its subscribership.
The Cal. PUC last month said it planned to fine Cingular $12.5 million for not allowing a grace period in its service contracts during which a customer could cancel without penalty, even during times when Cingular should have known its network couldn’t keep up with customers needs. Cingular contested the PUC action and said it would appeal the fine.