US operator Verizon has settled a class-action lawsuit over how it collected administrative fees by agreeing to pay $100 million to affected customers, although the operator denied any wrongdoing.  

According to a website related to the settlement, Verizon customers stated in the lawsuit the operator had charged post-paid individual consumer wireless service account holders “a monthly Administrative Charge and/or Administrative and Telco Recovery Charge that was unfair and not adequately disclosed”.

The complaint stated Verizon used the Administrative Charge to unlawfully charge its customers more per month for its wireless services without having to advertise the higher monthly rates.

The lawsuit stated Verizon first began adding the Administrative Charge to its post-paid wireless customers’ bills in 2005, initially at a rate of $0.40 per month for each phone line on its customers’ service plans.

It also alleged Verizon has increased the amount of the Administrative Charge on a regular basis. The most recent increase occurred in June 2022, when Verizon increased the Administrative Charge by 70 per cent from $1.95 to the current rate of $3.30 per line.

Verizon announced in May 2022 it would add administration fees to monthly bills of $1.35 for each single voice line, up to $3.30 for four lines.

The settlement was reached in November 2023. Verizon is in the process of notifying affected customers by email and letters.

Despite agreeing to the settlement, Verizon continued to deny that it did anything wrong and that the lawsuit has any merit.

“Verizon clearly identifies and describes its wireless consumer Admin Charge multiple times during the sales transaction, as well as in its marketing, contracts and billing,” the operator said in a statement to Mobile World Live.

The settlement pertains to charges issued to customers between 1 January 2016 to 8 November 2023. Customers who were affected have until 15 April 2024 to file their claims.