Cable Company Apologizes for Charging Woman Late Termination Fee After Her Death
DirecTV has apologized to the family of a 102-year-old woman for charging a late termination fee after the woman’s death last year.
When Isabel Albright died last December, the death apparently interfered with a two-year cable contract, her family told KGO.
“Everything was fine until we went to disconnect and that’s when all the surprises happened,” John Manrique, Albright’s son-in-law, told the station, adding that the family was in the process of repairing Albright’s San Lorenzo, California, home to be sold.
“They told us … ‘we’re going to charge you $160 for an early termination fee.’ She’s gone. Nobody’s living [here],” he said. “We’re selling the house. You’re going to tell us we have to keep the service at a house that’s not ours?”
The problem stemmed from the family adding a DirecTV cable box to Albright’s home for her caregivers while she was in hospice care, the family told KGO.
However, Manrique said the family didn’t know they’d be enrolled in a two-year contract as a result.
“We made it clear when we added the TV in the extra room that it was a temporary thing,” Manrique said. “We’re saying my mother in law’s on hospice, we’re not gonna pay, you know, two-year contract.”
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The company held that the family would have to pay because the cable account was in Albright’s daughter, Linda’s, name, which the family said is because Albright was too old to manage her own bills, according to KGO.
All seems to have ended well, though. In a statement to PEOPLE, DirecTV officials said: “We have apologized to the family and resolved this.”
“This was a mistake because of the name on the account, in this type of situation, we cancel accounts and waive all early termination fees,” a spokesperson for the company adds to PEOPLE.