MagicJack Refund Lost in Customer-Identity Snafu
Earlier this year I ordered a MagicJack Voice-over-IP USB phone hub from MagicJack's Web site, planning to use it with a Mac laptop. The unit came with a 30-day no-risk refund policy, so when it did not work as advertised with my Mac, I obtained a return merchandise authorization on the site and sent the product back via UPS. A month later, with no refund in sight, I contacted via online chat a customer service rep, who confirmed that the unit had been received and assured me that the refund would be forthcoming. To date, I have gone through five tech chats, and each representative has promised to take my problem to the next level of support. Anything you can do to help?
Bob Green, Los Angeles
OYS Responds: MagicJack told us that at least some of the confusion stemmed from the presence in its database of several customers surnamed Green--compounded by the fact that
MagicJack says it recently upgraded its RMA system to use bar codes, which should help
Mint.com Terms-of-Service Complaint
James D. Wick of San Leandro, California, wrote
Wick, an attorney, was concerned about the combination of a requirement that users grant Mint.com a limited power of attorney and agent status, and a $500 limit on liability. User terms
Anton Commissaris, vice president for revenue and business development at Mint.com, says the company believes it is "prudent and appropriate" to insist on power-of-attorney authority in order to access information on financial institution sites on the consumer's behalf.
"The power of attorney is not authorization to defraud the consumer," Commissaris says. He adds that should Mint.com abuse this power to commit fraud, "the Mint.com consumer would be protected by federal antifraud banking law," so the $500 liability limit would be moot.
Eric Goldman, assistant professor and director of the High Tech Law Institute at the Santa Clara (California) University School of Law, says that Mint.com's power-of-attorney requirement might address bans on password sharing in some online-banking agreements. But he understands Wick's concern. "This might not be the right service for some," he says.
Yardena Arar contributed to this story.