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As of July 1, 1998, state law makes slamming illegal in Georgia. Slamming happens when a local or long distance telephone company switches your service provider without your knowledge or consent. Previously limited to long distance service, slamming is on the rise as competition expands to local service and local toll calling markets. The Georgia Public Service Commission may penalize a phone company up to $15,000 for each violation. Additionally, a penalty of $10,000 may be assessed for each day on which said violation(s) continues.
Be wary of sales pitches. Telemarketers may tempt you to sign up for a contest promising big prizes. Your signature may be represented as an agreement to switch telephone carriers. Slammers also may promise children, housekeepers and other persons who answer your phone lower rates and better service if they switch. Sometimes service is changed without any customer contact.
There are many ways you may be unknowingly switched, including:
Call 1-700-555-4141 (toll free) to verify your long distance provider or call 1-(your area code)-700-4141 to verify your local toll provider.
Tell your local phone company that you did not request a change in your long distance service. Ask the company to reconnect you to your previous carrier and have unauthorized charges removed from your bill.
Call the company listed on your telephone bill as the service provider. Inform the company that caused the slam that you did not request its service, that you want it canceled immediately and that you will only pay the charge your preferred carrier would have imposed. If you have actually paid any charges billed by the carrier, inform the carrier that you are entitled to a refund unless the carrier can provide proof of your authorization for the carrier change, and you want all switching charges removed from your bill.
Call your preferred long distance carrier and ask to be reconnected with no "change charges." Contact the Georgia Public Service Commission, if the issue is not resolved to your satisfaction.
Georgia Public Service Commission
244 Washington Street, SW
Atlanta, GA 30334
Fax: (404) 656-2341