My question involves a consumer law issue in the State of: Iowa/ Entire U.S.
Since I am not certain of the validity of this potential case, I will refrain from mentioning the name of the wireless carrier involved. Because of a semi-related issue I've been having with my wireless carrier, I have discovered that my current carrier is falsifying their coverage area at the phone end and am hoping this can be termed false advertisement. However, I'm no legal expert and thought I should get a second opinion before I proceed any further.
(Wireless Carrier)’s phones are programmed to always indicate that they are connected to their towers, even when they are connected to partner towers.
The legal definition of False Advertisement:
To establish that an advertisement is false, a plaintiff must prove five things: (1) a false statement of fact has been made about the advertiser's own or another person's goods, services, or commercial activity; (2) the statement either deceives or has the potential to deceive a substantial portion of its targeted audience; (3) the deception is also likely to affect the purchasing decisions of its audience; (4) the advertising involves goods or services in interstate commerce; and (5) the deception has either resulted in or is likely to result in injury to the plaintiff. The most heavily weighed factor is the advertisement's potential to injure a customer. The injury is usually attributed to money the consumer lost through a purchase that would not have been made had the advertisement not been misleading. False statements can be defined in two ways: those that are false on their face and those that are implicitly false.
Please match the statements below to their corresponding numbers above. How this relates to all users on (Wireless Carrier)’s network:
1) All phones on (Wireless Carrier) are programmed to always indicate that they are connected to said provider's towers, even when they are connected to partner towers. (Wireless Carrier) has the power to show partner coverage at the phone end, but has chosen not to.
2) As there is no way to tell who you're connected to, this affects all users under (Wireless Carrier) service.
3) User's looking for cellular service may think twice about getting service with (Wireless Carrier) if they know who's towers they're actually connected to during the 30 day trial period; especially those living in partner coverage only areas.
4) (Wireless Carrier) provides service in the majority of this United States.
5) This will affect different people in different ways, but in my case this false advertisement is basically forcing me to drop (Wireless Carrier)’s service in favor of another provider’s service. As passing the usage caps in my case was unavoidable, this is something I would have eventually needed to do. However, if I had known that I was not connected to (Wireless Carrier) at home, I could have better prepared to limit my usage at home and been able to save the appropriate money to switch services. If this does not change, users will continue to exceed ridiculous data and voice caps under partner coverage that they are unaware that they’re even using. This has the potential to lead many users into the same situation that I’m now experiencing and trying to resolve.
I believe that the stature of this problem warrants a class action suit, but as I have already indicated, I am no legal expert. I would appreciate it if someone could tell me if I have a solid case.