The company name is "Integrated Alarms", a division of "Integrated
Alarm Services Group, Inc.". located at, 4545 Spring Mountain Rd., Las
Vegas, Nevada 89102.
They have increased their rate last month by $5 for the residents of
Fremont California. When you ask for canceling your service, they say
that the 2-year contract that you signed five years ago, are
automatically re-newed by itself each year on the anniversary date of
your contract. You are stuck with their rate increase and they have
forced you their services if you miss a tiny 30 day cancellation
I am going to see a lawyer to file a class action lawsuit against
Integrated Alarm Services Group. They can not force us to pay extra $5
charge for their so called "added security/verified response". They
need to stop being EVIL. If they were a decent company they would have
asked the customers to opt-in for the added security and give the
customers a choice if they want to opt-in or not. But, apparently they
are forcing the customers and all the Fremont, California (and Modesto
Calif.) to opt-in to their rate increase.
Also, their content of their service contract is evil. After a two
year contact, it automatically gets re-newed for the next 12 month and
you only have a tiny 30 day period to cancel the next year's contract,
and if you miss it, guess what, you are stuck with them.
Avoid these crooks if you can.
On Wed, 16 May 2007 14:57:31 -0400, "Bill Kearney"
Or cancel early and on time.
The OP did not do something and the rest of the world is a villainous
He will not get ( I'm no lawyer ) a judge to declare the case "class
action", because all folks failed to follow the cancellation policy.
He woke up with turds in his corn flakes and is pissed.
"I don't have anything against work. I just figure, why deprive somebody who
really loves it."
Check the contract carefully. In most cases where
there is provision for periodic rate increases the
client has the option to cancel if the increase is not
acceptable. Otherwise they could arbitrarily decide
to raise the rates by $100 per month and you'd have
to pay it. If the contact allows them to raise the
price without notice and without you having the right
to cancel, any court in the land would strike it down
Note, however, that the 30-day cancellation notice
is the minimum. In other words, you can cancel any
time *before* the last 30 days of the term. Many
alarm companies require 60 days' notice. That is
actually worse for the client than the 30-day term in
You can do that if you like. However, if the town
has instituted a requirement for verified response
and that causes the alarm company to incur added
operational costs, it may be difficult for you to prevail.
Most alarm monitoring agreements include a clause
allowing the alarm company to pass along to the
customer any added cost due to taxes or
governemental regulations. This may seem unfair
but without it the alarm company could be forced to
opperate at a loss (worst case scenario).
To be clear, I'm not defending your alarm company's
actions -- just explaining the contractual basis for
what they are doing. Without benefit of having read
your particular contract I can only surmise what is in
it but the things I mentioned are pretty standard in
I hope you are able to resolve this issue to your
satisfaction. Best of luck with it.
What part of all this did you not understand when you read and signed
the contract? You DID read it before signing right? RIGHT? Oh, you just
thought that it would say what YOU wanted it to say and then now you're
surprised that it doesn't? YOU signed it - NOW be a man and abide by
it. NEXT time you might even read what you're signing! But I won't bet
In any case, a price increase usually means you have a cancellation
option. But then that clause would be in the contract that you haven't
read so you wouldn't know about it.
Good luck finding an attorney who will work on contingency for the class
action. You might find that you agreed to binding arbitration on any
disputes. That'll be in the contract too.
I know it's all an EVIL plot but you DID agree to it by signing the
contract didn't you?
On 16 May 2007 11:24:48 -0700, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
I am not a lawyer, by any means.... I doubt you have any chance at a
class action, because even though there are many people in your
general situation, most were ready to pay the higher price, and most
of the rest cancelled according to their procedure, and most of the
rest don't want to bother with a lawsuit. The amount to be recovered
won't be very much, unless there's something I'm missing, so you'll
have to pay a lawyer, and the rest of the class won't want to chip in
on that. I suspect you can't have a class action in small claims
It's also very possible that you won't find another company you like
better. They may all charge for verified response now, and any reason
you picked this company in the first place might still apply. So if
you can't find a better place, you may want to stay where you are.
Or, you might have a chance to cancel the contract, maybe, maybe.
What you probably have is a contract of adhesion, one that the
corporation writes and which you have no chance to negotiate or modify
before signing. If there is an ambiguity in a contract of adhesion,
such ambiguities are usually interpreted against the party who wrote
the contract, not you, so that might help. So if you can come up with
any way to interpret that clause or another one so the contract
doesn't require you to cancel when they say it does, even if most
would say they meant what they say they mean, if it could possibly
mean something better for you, that could help you a lot.
Even if you could negotiate some of the terms, like will they monitor
for fire as well as burglars (is that negotiable?) you probably had no
chance to negotiate the cancellation terms (although they may say that
you could have, or they may agree that you couldn't have. Did you
try?) Regardless of whether you tried or not, a small claims court
may decide not to enforce that clause, but IANAL.
If you give them 30 days notice and stop paying at the start of the
next payment period following the 30 days, they might dun you or send
the rest of the contract to a collection agency, and they might sue
you or report you to a credit bureau. The credit bureau thing would
be bad, I think even if you later win in court. Thne suing would be
bad if the contract requires you to pay legal fees. Property leases
often do, but I don't know about this.
So I would suggest you don't stop paying unless they agree to it. I
would suggest that you give them 30 days notice, certified mail return
receipt, and politely tell them you are cancelling and giving 30 days
notice (don't include any of this EVIL nonsense) and ask them if they
will let you out of the contract.Ask them to do it for the sake of
customer goodwill.** Keep your own copy of the letter. Then you can
change to the new company. Do you get monthly bills, or are you
expected to pay without getting a bill? If the former, which seems
most likely, if they continue to send you bills, call them up and talk
to the clerk's supervisor and say you are not using their service
anymore, as of such date, and you had asked to cancel, and "Would you
let me do so?" Note the time and date that you called. If he says no,
or continues to send bills, .I would pay them. Then when the contract
period is over, you can sue them to get your money back. This way you
can't damage your credit. There won't even be on the credit report a
complaint about you and a notation that you won in court later, if you
do. Because you will have paid. Bring to court the bills from the
other company that run simultaneously with the first company's bills.
Otherwsise the court will figure you were paying the first company and
using its service. That's more likely than what I'm suggesting. And
the court will give you nothing.
And maybe some way to show you can't use to monitoring companies at
the same time, although maybe the judge will alreday know that.
**They won't actually be losing any money, unlike a landlord who would
if someone breaks a lease and he has to advertise again, or paint
again. I never know if it helps or hurts to point out someone is not
going to be losing any money. I think it depends on who you are
talking to, if he's a rationalist, or if he is annoyed when someone
else is. I don't know who it is more likely to meet.
Make sure that the amount on the rest of the contract when you cancel
is less than the limit you can sue for in small claims court.
This means if you lose in court, you'll have paid twice.
Sort of related: I once visited my brother, who had bought a house but
not signed up with any alarm company. When I was testing the siren,
which I thought he might want to use even if had no monitoring
company, it worked. I turned it off and went to go bike riding.
Maybe 10 or 15 minutes after the siren, the police showed up, just as
I was leaving. Even though my brother had never signed up, the alarm
company still called the police, even though they hadn't been paid for
almost a year. (If there was verification in effect -- probably was
-- they couldn't have called me because my brother had a different
phone number from the previous owner.)
Before just cancelling the contract check to be sure you have access to
make changes to the panel. Most companies put a code in the panel to
lock out changes in service providers. So if you cancel without getting
the password you may need a new panel to work with another company.
On May 16, 2:24 pm, email@example.com wrote:
I kind of like these kinds of contracts. There is a very good reason
why I like them and I will be glad to share it with you.
These kinds of contracts allow the company to offer their service at
the lowest base rates. Customers which are irresponsible, cannot plan
ahead, and who choose not to read are effectively subsidizing
customers who do all three. If a person such as myself rented a home
for a period of two years I could sign up, cancel at the end of the
term, and pay a lot less because others were subsidizing the system.
The same service with a "cancel anytime" plan would cost more per
month and for someone like me more overall (even if it would be less
overall for you). It's kind of like rebates ... if you know you are
not going to send in the rebate form then don't buy the product. If
you don't send in the rebate form in time or you don't follow the
stupid little rules like circle the purchase on the receipt then you
don't get to complain. If you pay your credit card balance every
month it's free. If you pay your balance late every month there is a
$35 late fee plus interest. As far as the rate increase goes please
take a look at how fast the post office has been raising rates, and
they don't even offer more service! You did, after all, have 30 days
to cancel and not pay the fee.
Hope this helps in the future,
Tsk, tsk, tsk... You cross-post this same message to multiple Groups
and for what? Because you were STUPID and didn't read your contract (or
the termination clause). I wonder... Are you in business? Do you
recognize that because things like gasoline, electricity and rent are
*increasing* (almost daily) that *businesses* have few options open to
them that will allow them to *stay* in business. If the cost of a
keypad goes up by 10 or 15 percent, do you think that the business
should simply absorb the cost? And the alarm company is "evil" because
they're trying to protect their revenue stream? I'd call you an
"idiot", but that would demean all the other idiots out there.
Well, fwiw, yes, you should have read the contract, but unlike others, I
think this form of agreement is horrible and I refuse to sign ANYTHING
which does an automatic renewal or gives you a short window in which to
cancel. Am I right? Doesn't matter, I just refuse to sign. I believe
it is called "opt-out".
No under no circumstances, I think those terms are awful. Some
companies will eliminate the clause if you make enough noise.
However, I have something better than an alarm service: I am connected
directly to the local police dispatch for which I pay $0.00. I have a
rather elaborate system which also records live video and transmits it
to a site in another State. Anyone with the talent to get past my
system should be stealing professionally from museums, etc. There isn't
nearly enough here to make it worthwhile!
Congress recently held hearings that revealed the average credit card
contract is written at a level requiring post-graduate education to fully
understand. Many of the provisions concerning which rates apply to what
balances are nearly impossible to comprehend.
If you pay off your card in full and never have a payment go astray, you're
probably safe. But God help you if you run a balance. The "opt" out
options of other card companies aren't very good since they all tend to use
the same horrendously complex boiler plate. You basically have to opt out
of having a card to avoid signing an onerous contract. Living without a CC
is getting harder and harder to do in today's world unless you carry
thousands of dollars in cash.
A lot of times, when dealing with entities like cell phone companies, car
lessors, insurance companies, alarm companies and others, it's virtually
impossible to *find* a contract that doesn't seriously screw the consumer.
You usually sign away your rights to sue, your rights to consequential
damages and often to damages of any kind (in states that support such
nonsense!) even if *they* have been grossly negligent. I don't know if
anyone's ever been to arbitration, but those who have could easily believe
the word's roots are from the Old French meaning "to have a tree rammed up
one's butt." (My apologies if there are any professional arbitrators in the
audience but it's not my opinion alone:)
That is not true. Gross negligence is tortious
and in most states (Pennsylvania is a notable
exception) gross negligence will over-ride
contractual waivers of a right to seek damages.
Alarm industry case law is full of decisions where
alarm companies' contractual protections have
been tossed out because of gross negligence.
IIRC, Pennsylvania is one of the few states
that do not recognize gross negligence.
Following is an excerpt from a NY State case:
"New York law generally enforces contractual
provisions absolving a party from its own
negligence." Colnaghi, U.S.A., Ltd. v. Jewelers
Protection Services, Ltd., 81 N.Y.2d 821,823
(1993); Sommer v. Federal Signal Corp., 79 N.Y.2d
540,553 (1992). Public policy, however, prohibits a
party from insulating itself through a contractual
clause, for damages caused by grossly negligent
conduct. Id.; Sommer at 553."
"Gross negligence, when invoked to pierce an
agreed-upon limitation of liability in a commercial
contract, must "smack of intentional wrongdoing"
(Kalish-Jarcho, Inc. v City of New York, 58 NY2d
, at 385). It is conduct that evinces a reckless
indifference to the rights of others (citations omitted)."
The key is in the definition of gross negligence.
It is much worse conduct than the common negligent
behavior of some alarm companies. For example,
a relative of mine who has an ADT system (it was
in the house when he bought it) says that they
usually take about 10 minutes to call when the alarm
goes off. That is certainly negligent behavior. It
is not gross negligence, however.
I also have experienced problems with ADT here in north Texas. When my
wife died suddenly in July '04, I had great difficulty in getting them to
fit two talking control panels (I have no eyesight for some years).
They also had to completely replace the old system, which had been put
in for my late parents-in-law many years ago, as it was found to be
totally nonoperative. I paid for the work done and the new panels and
signed a new contract/agreement but did not realize it was for three years.
I had plenty on my plate at that time, Will, cremation, estate admin
and so on.
So, on selling that property in June'05, I assumed the agreement would
expire around September of that year and if thenew owner wanted it he
could take out a new contract.
Some weeks ago I had a phone call one evening from someone who said he was
from ADT and that he had "been going through some old paperwork and
found the sum of 380 dollars outstanding. Seemed it was for "services and
I told him I didn't just write out checks for anyone who phoned me with
no documentary proof, and next day phoned the local ADT billing office.
I was told there was an account for that address but in my late wife's
name, not mine, but they could not tell me if any money was owed, and the
promised call back to confirm or deny the debt was never made to me.
I e-mailed them with full details and giving my full postal and e-mail
addresses, and received a brief e-mail acknowledgment.
Next, a debt collection agency pme honed and avery offensive bullying type
tried to frighten me into sending the money. This kind of approach
doesn't work with me. His threat that I 'would lose my credit
rating' is irrelevant (in the extremely unlikely event that I ever
need to borrow money, I could raise
plenty as I have substantial equity). Another guy claiming to be from
ADT phoned another day to suggest that if I paid 251.74 by credit card,
he would close the account. I told him I don't pay by credit card if I
can avoid it, and certainly not over the phone, but would send a check
for that amount to the address he gave. This was sent off a couple of days
later, but the check has still not been cashed some 3 or 4 weeks later
The debt collection agency has rung repeatedly, but on seeing their
out-of -State - or rather hearing it! - number on my talking caller id,
I just let it ring. They haven't callef for a couple of days now, unless
the ones that are 'Number unknown' are fromthem.
They can take me to court if they like, it won't
bother me and for a sum of that amount, I doubt if it would be worth
Incidentally, I have never once received any written communication from
ADT or the debt collection outfit, although as I said above, ADT
have been given my new address.
I don't have a security alarm system in this (new-built) house; don't
need it as it is part of a gated community with security guards. And I
don't have anything in here worth breaking in for anyway! (frugal
Oh, and for the record, I am completely free of debt of any kind and
have been since well before I came to America.
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