DENVER (CBS4) – Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser announced on Thursday that DIRECTV will pay more than $1 million in refunds to Coloradans who were overcharged during the Altitude Sports blackout. More than 204,000 Coloradans will receive a portion of the payout.
DIRECTV will provide a $5 credit to current customers and mail a $5 check to former customers. The settlement comes after DIRECTV continued to charge for Altitude Sports while the channel was unavailable due to a contract dispute between the two companies. DIRECTV is also accused of charging an obsolete fee for high-definition service when HD is considered a household standard.
“DIRECTV used these fees to take advantage of Coloradans, charging them for services they weren’t getting or were no longer relevant, and only refunding those who noticed and reached out to the company about the issue,” said Weiser. “Consumers should not be penalized for being too busy to wait on hold to demand fair treatment. Today’s settlement remedies the harms caused by DIRECTV’s actions and will provide refunds to consumers.”
A DIRECTV spokesperson told CBS4, “While we’ve reached a compromise in favor of our customers, we strongly disagree with the basis of the challenge.”
Altitude Sports was unavailable to DIRECTV customers in September and October of 2019. Comcast and DISH stopped carrying Altitude in September 2019 and it has yet to return to those services. DIRECTV says it has provided credits to fans in 2019 who called to express concern about the blackout.
The Colorado Attorney General’s Office says more than 15,000 Coloradans were charged DIRECTV’s HD fee. As part of the settlement, DIRECTV will provide these Coloradans with a $1-$3 monthly credit for more than two years. Weiser’s office says DIRECTV will contact affected customers in the next 30-60 days with more details about the credits.