Many of our readers have told us crazy stories about how their free government cell phone service was cut off despite filling out all the paperwork. Most of them end up giving up. They should be inspired by the story of Gerald Messier.
The feisty vet, a Massachusetts resident, was enrolled in Lifeline with Assurance Wireless. He was well aware of the rule that said, “Once every 30 days you must make a call, send a text or go online (not using Wi-Fi) from your Assurance Wireless phone to keep your free Lifeline service.”
That’s where the trouble began. Messier didn’t use his account for 30 days back in September 2017. He also knew the consequences of not using his phone for 30 days or more. His service was terminated and Messier was required to re-enroll. No problem. He knew he had violated the rules. He understood what the problem was.
He did as the rules required. He filled out an application to reinstate his free government cell phone account and mailed it to Assurance.
However, his free government cell phone plan was not reinstated because the company said they had never received the first one.
So he filled out the paperwork and sent it in again.
Once again Assurance said they never received it.
So he enrolled once more.
And Assurance once said said, “We never received it.”
He end up sending in 19 different applications.
And Assurance gave him the same answer each and every time.
SouthCoastToday.com gives us Messier’s side of the story:
“They gave me a lot of lip,” said the feisty 92-year-old WWII veteran, adding he would call the company and get a different person each time.
“Each time they told me I needed to fill out an application, so I did, and then…nothing” Messier said.
“I started this two years ago and no one can find my applications,” he said.
He made 19 calls to the company and each time they sent him a form to fill out and mail back.
Messier did that all 19 times from September 2017 to February 2018.
We would advise you not to get in a dispute with Mr Messier because he is one of those tough old birds who won World War II for us. He never gave up. He fought like his life depended on it.
He contacted Massachusetts State Rep. Bob Koczera in 2018 and the representative’s office was able to apply a little pressure. Voila! Messier got his free government cell phone account reinstated.
“How many people my age stand up?,” Messier. “I fight back!”
Messier wrote a letter to Gov. Charlie Baker dated Feb. 18, 2020 telling the governor about the ordeal he had to go through to get his cell phone reinstated.
The letter said in part, “I and 16 million other guys and dolls saved their asses in WWII
We hope Messier’s story serves as an inspiration to all the other FreeGovernmentCellPhone.net readers who’ve faced similar problems.
We don’t necessarily point fingers at the Lifeline companies in this situation. Bureaucracies are bureaucracies whether they are in business or government or even in charitable institutions. The bigger they get, the less responsive and more incompetent they seem to be.
But please let this be a lesson. If you find yourself in Gerald Messier’s situation, do what he did.
Never give up. Never give in.
h/t: South Coast Today