A Houston woman received this curious letter recently. Curious because she says she’s never done business with “United Online” or Juno. A quick search online turns up a ton of other consumers who also received similiar letters, with no explanation. Each letter is an attempt to collect a relatively small amount of money, usually less than $20. Does the company just hope consumers will think it’s such a small amount, they’ll just send it in?
Of course, a call to the toll-free number only gets you a recorded message with instructions on how you can pay.
I have an email into the company, since this seems to be the only real way to make contact with a human at United Online.
If you receive one of these letters, but do not believe you owe the money, here’s what you should do:
1) Send a letter back to the company (they do include a self-addressed postage-paid envelope) requesting proof that you owe the debt within 30 days. The proof should explain when you agreed to pay the amount and what you bought.
2) In that letter, cc: the California Attorney General and the Houston BBB (The Houston BBB will get it to the appropriate bureau.).
I will follow up and let you know if United Online ever gets back with me.
If you’re bored (and maybe a little irritated at the company), you can always stuff the self-addressed, postage-paid envelope with other junk mail you don’t want… and send it to United Online Collections Division.