Telstra Billing hits again

I moved about 7 months ago. Being a big fan of the Checkout and of course Choice, I know my consumer rights so when I found out that there were no ports available at my new address and realised that Telstra could not provide adsl2 I rang them (actually I rang them 3 times for about 3 hours to have port discussions because at First they wanted to charge me to look for ports, till I told them that I had already looked online with other service providers and there weren’t any available, I then asked if there was any other way they could provide there service like with a 4g modum and they didn’t have that). So after 4 very long, long, long phone calls we all agreed (after I through in some technical terms like fit for service etc) that they could no longer provide me with the service they promised and would waive the termination fee. All good! Yay!
7 months later I get a cryptic email from a group calling themselves Operations on my email. I think what is this? Is it a virus should I open it? I decide to take the risk. It says please contact our office by email or ring within the next 72 hours and quote … as we need to make a decision that may affect your ability to obtain finance for the next 5 years.
Impact financial services

What?!!! I’ve haven’t been late paying a bill since my 20s! I don’t know what to make of this! Is it real? I write back. What is this regarding?

Next morning 8:30am working up to waking my sick daughter for distance schooling and I get a phone call. This is such and such we are calling because you owe $245 from your last address with Telstra. Ok but I never got a bill or anything? You must not have paid one. Can you explain more? In the end I pay it after first getting her to confirm my previous address.

After an hour of recovery and thinking and checking my emails I think this is not right. I did not receive this bill. I don’t want to pay for something that I don’t even know what it is and never received a bill. Look up Telstra. No phone number on their webpage. Google how to phone Telstra. Found it. Phone them. Talk, ask what is going on. Turns out they made a note not to charge me but charged me a disconnect fee anyway, on top of that they have been charging me $6 a month till Feb for my TBox (which I would happily have just paid off) plus a $15 a month late fee on top of that! Can I just say again I never received an email bill from them and they had my email address in fact that’s where they had been sending the bills previously! Aghh! I got pretty mad at this point. The matter has been resolved but not in writing. I have numbers everywhere and I have warned them that if I do not get my money back I will be on the fu tube and all over the telecommunications ombudsman (as well as my bank who has already sent me the paperwork if I need it) to fix this. The thing that gets me is i was with them 10 years and never late paying a bill. Imagine if you were older and didn’t pick it up the way I did. First I wasn’t sure the email was spam or real, second I did call Telstra and know my rights but how many other people are they billing without them knowing? Sorry for the rant!


For what it’s worth, when I closed my last telephone account with Telstra about ten years ago they didn’t ever send me a final account for payment. No; but instead they sent a debt collector’s letter – pay or we’ll sue! What a nerve! And I discovered later that they had done exactly the same thing to my wife, before we were married. Clearly it was a policy they had operating then. Whether it still is we have no knowledge, because, on principle, neither my wife nor I have been Telstra customers again.


Apparently this is still their preferred method of business whether legal or not. They had my email address and knew how to contact me. My phone number was the same and they just haven’t bothered to send me a bill or any other notification till this weird email. I would like to ask the Choice staff if this is even legal? Can they send debt collectors after you without first trying to contact you or send you a bill? I was lucky, they have done a reversal on the visa amount I paid so it shouldn’t come out of my account and I will only be charged for what I owed on the t-box ($27) but other people I am sure have not been so lucky and I doubt I am the only person this has happened too. I also spent all day on the phone and threw every consumer advocate name I knew at them! If this is something they have been doing for years how can they get away with it?


I quit Telstra many years ago (2005) because I got fed up with how I was treated. They tried to foist a disconnect bill on me that they did not have a right to and I told them that I would not pay it. (In those days you could fairly easily talk to someone at Telstra.)
Over a period of time I got phone calls from various overseas Telstra callcentres and each time I would tell them that I was not paying and that I would see them in court to settle things.
The last number of calls came from Debt collecting agencies and I would tell them the same.
The calls eventually stopped.


I too have had problems with Telstra, namely Bigpond. I am one of Bigpond’s early customers when things didn’t always work. The contract expired but didn’t make a difference to Telstra or myself. Then two or so years ago, Telstra decided that I must go on a 2 year contract. Of course the monthly deal was priced higher than the ongoing monthly fee I had been paying. I said I would but had to be at the existing fee for at least 12 months. This was agreed to.

But some months later, suddenly the fee went up and there was no consideration that I was under an arrangement negotiated with Telstra. Telstra said it could not find any thing in its files about this arrangement.

I was told by Telstra that I had to pay the higher price because I was on fibre cable and there were no other providers. If I want to go to ADSL, then it was a poor service in my area.

Unfortunately NBN won’t come to my area until late 2018, but the moment it does, I will leave Telstra even if I have to pay a higher price. Because Telstra did not respect the negotiated deal, it will lose much more in foregone fees from me than the miserable amount it raked back.

Moreover Telstra lost more fees because of its stupid actions. I switched my company from Telstra to another carrier and its fees are much higher than I will ever pay privately.

Yep, had almost the exact same issue. Fortunately for me, and unfortunately for them, I actually had a letter from them stating that my account was closed and no monies owing, and all previous charges had been reversed, etc, etc.

Of course when they sent me the bill for all the outstanding fees and penalties for a couple of years, I had great pleasure ringing and making some noise.

Interestingly, they had sent the letter to me via email, and yet all the penalty notices and fees and fines and whatever, never seemed to arrive in my Inbox. There seems to be a common thread here about this excuse and method. What I have since found out was that they need to prove that they sent the email, and that it had been receipted… which of course they couldn’t!! Fun and games with the biggest loser of them all.


Since I made the stupid mistake of paying the debt collectors and have no been trying to work out with Telstra how to get my money back. I discovered yesterday the idiots had sent a cheque to my old address when I had specifically told them on the phone not to do that. Then they tried to refuse to cancel the cheque and when I asked to speak to someone in charge they put me on silent hold for 20 minutes so I hung up and rang back. Of course then she panicked and rang me back three times. I spoke to someone who has promised to cancel the cheque and get someone to call me and put the money directly in my account. Since at this point I don’t actually believe a word they are saying and I never actually received a bill etc. Yesterday I decided to stuff them and go ahead and put in a complaint with the TIO since ir may be the only way to actually guarantee that they refund the money to me and it doesn’t disappearsomewhere. This has just been a total nightmare. No wonder there are so many complaints against them!

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I have also had major problems with Telstra in the past, their “HELP DESK” is deplorable I now go straight to the top and contact the CEO then thing get sorted Post Haste.

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I must have been lucky in 2014 when I cancelled my Telstra account because of their appalling service. It was explicit that I CANCELLED my account. However, for some reason Telstra owed me $1.23. So every six months or so I receive a hard copy account in the mail (I had actually signed up for accounts by e-mail) saying no need to pay anything. Mind you, no detail on how to recover the $1.23 they owe me.

Yesterday, whilst travelling in Strahan Tasmania, I received proof Teslstra hang on to their detail about you even after you cancel your account: I was able to use my old Telstra login credentials to buy data on the Telstra Air service!

Did you get your $1.23 credited toward the purchase?

It took me 10 months to finally get their wrong charges credited 10 years ago. I will NEVER use a direct debit for Telstra and hope that I will never have to use them as Internet providers in the future.

Telstra air works??? How on earth did you manage that!.
Been trying to figure out how to use the Telstra network overseas via Fon. We have been "aired up for 3 years and travelling for a total of nine months have yet to be able to connect via Telstra air ap. thank goodness other countries have free wifi everywhere!

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That was simon, not I.

I’m still trying to get my money back. I have sent it to the TIO and Telstra have given me a useless case manager who rings me and sends emails to some department that he tells me does not have phone and they do nothing. They sent a cheque to my old address which I have told them to cancel three times and asked them to just put the money in my account. He keeps trying to send me a cheque. Since its been about a month I lost it today and told him I wanted the money in my account by Friday. I have been asking them to put the money directly into my account for a month and no one has been listening! If it’s not in by Friday I will ring the TIO escalate it again and ring the TIO every Friday till the money is in my account because this is getting ridiculous! I can send money overseas in 3 to 4 days why have I waited a month to get money I never owed in the first place because they threatened me needlessly. I am not happy and if I could I would do more to let other people know how they are treating me. They let me tell them what I want then in a stupid calm voice go back to what they are going to do anyway. I mean can you seriously not transfer money Telstra!


Put your concerns in a petition on and let the world know about the treatment, maybe that will get their notice and make them move.


I would but at the moment I have a sick 13 year old who has a chronic illness. I’m honestly too tired to do too much. I just want the money back so we can use it for the pediatrician if she’s well enough in a few days (she has the flu too at the moment) . I’m always signing those petitions because I try to help. Between trying to deal with everyday and helping her with distance schooling all the time and now this Telstra thing I’m just tired and feel like crying. For some people $250 is nothing but when your child is sick it’s all important. I’m just so over it. I just feel like crying.


Hang in there @dominiquedwards, and feel free to send me a private message if you’d like to discuss the issue further or even if you’d just like a friendly ear.

Have Telstra given you some indication that they will transfer the money via EFT before Friday? If not, I would call the TIO again as soon as possible (if nothing else, just to sort out the issue asap).


Thanks Brendan, they keep saying the same thing they always say. I will call to check how you going on Friday and see if you have received the money. They have said they have to request through email to account to have the money transferred because they don’t have a direct number. This sounds totally ridiculous to me. What sort of telephone company doesn’t have a direct number to accounts? I feel like they are just giving me excuses. I mean I didn’t owe them the money in the first place. I never received a bill for it and now they just seem to finding the most difficult ways possible to not pay it back when they could just transfer. I’ve given them my bank details three times and they have them from my visa account anyway.


A number of companies have instituted such walls between functions where direct communication is impossible unless you are the most senior manager talking to a peer. The reason is supposedly that it enables the staff in each function to work through their inbox of work in an orderly manner without interruptions. nb. It also acts to protect the underachievers and over employed.

I was the victim of this BS between my ISP Level 2 Special Case Manager and her support chain (!!!) and it was most unpleasant. She was as frustrated as I in trying to get meaningful responses.


Totally agree it is ridiculous. In my experience, most of large companies don’t perform too well when you have an anomaly or a problem that’s ‘outside the box’, which sounds like your situation. In any case, it sounds like you have a good plan for getting it resolved. Look forward to hearing how you go on Friday :+1: