ATT group plan w/4 lines for $120 - but each line has a $40 balance. How will renewal handle this?

yellowdog

New member
Joined
Feb 18, 2004
Messages
144
Location
Seattle
Carrier(s)
T-Mobile prepaid
Device(s)
something free
I currently have 4 lines on the $40/line plan. It's $120 with "group" discount. Due a number of screw ups on my line over the past few months, ATT gave me a "free" month to make up for their incompetence. But instead of just adding a $120 balance to the "parent" line, the rep added a $40 credit to each line. Right now, my statement (on Paygo) for the "master/parent" line is showing:

Your Plan Amount$120.00
Total Charges$120.00
Current Balance ( Expires on Feb 1, 2025 )$40.00
Payment ( Due Mar 6, 2024 )$80.00

The three child each lines show:

Total Charges$0.00
Current Balance ( Expires on Mar 6, 2024 )$40.00
Payment ( Due Mar 6, 2024 )$0.00

I'm concerned that the credits on those child lines are basically "marooned" and will expire on March 6 without being used, since there are no "charges" on those lines (again, no charges because the plan is associated with the master/parent line and not the child line).

I'm concerned that when renewal happens, it'll charge that $80 to my autopay credit card to cover the balance on the "master/parent" billing line (and expire the other balances). I said this to the rep and asked them to move the credits to the master line, but they insist that the system will grab the balance from each of the member lines and use those balances before charging my autopay. They did say that "if" the system charges my autopay they can straighten it out later, but I'm not hopeful (plus I'm going to be traveling and don't want the hassle of trying to explain how I had credits, but they were in the wrong place, and now they're expired, etc... sigh).

Is the rep right? Am right? Thanks in advance for any light you can shed.
 
Last edited:
I have had a family plan for a couple of years now. You are correct:

The auto-renewal process only charges the "parent"/primary account (after applying the group discounts), regardless of any balance that the member accounts may have themselves. That's also why "payment due" shows as "$0" for them. Nothing will be charged to them.

Based on my own experience, those member balances appear to be only good for add-ons you buy for each individual member line (extra data, international data etc). Since they cannot be bought from the parent account. That's how I have had to buy them.

The balances in each member line will expire on the date stated for each member line (March 4, 2024) in your case, unless you add some more money to each account to extend it.

I'd try to plead the case again to at&t and explain the situation. Hopefully you'll get a CSR who helps you.

Edit: another "solution" is to remove the member lines from the group temporarily to deplete those balances. But this may be worse then the problem you are trying to fix: More expensive at the end. Prone to system mishaps. Hassle to do and undo it etc.
 
I have had a family plan for a couple of years now. You are correct:

<snip>

The balances in each member line will expire on the date stated for each member line (March 4, 2024) in your case, unless you add some more money to each account to extend it.

Thanks for the confirmation and the reminder about keeping the balances alive.


I'd try to plead the case again to at&t and explain the situation. Hopefully you'll get a CSR who helps you.

I have a feeling that after the outage CSRs aren't going to be in the greatest of moods.

Edit: another "solution" is to remove the member lines from the group temporarily to deplete those balances. But this may be worse then the problem you are trying to fix: More expensive at the end. Prone to system mishaps. Hassle to do and undo it etc.

Yikes, yeah, I don't want to attempt this. Too many potential places for automated mishaps.

(edit: weird -- I quoted your post and the quotes show up in edit view, but not on the site)
(edit2. Quotes are back. Still weird, tho)
 
Last edited:
Update: new rep confirmed balance on child accounts would expire without applying to bill on parent account. They cheerfully got approval for an "exception" and moved the balance. The whole process took 15 min, including initial 10 min hold in the queue. Quite a contrast to the last rep who basically argued with me for 30 minutes, saying it wasn't necessary.

Bonus: since they moved over $100 at one time, the "extra" $40 has a year expiration date!
 
Back
Top