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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

Telecom bureau cites Liberty Mobile for probe into customer migration issues

By The Star Staff

The Puerto Rico Telecommunications Bureau has ordered executives of Liberty Mobile to appear at a hearing on Feb. 28 to answer questions about problems with the migration of AT&T clients to Liberty.

On Oct. 9, 2019, AT&T announced plans to sell its wireless and wireline operations in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands to Liberty. As a result, AT&T wireless service and other agreements in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands became part of Liberty, not AT&T Mobility LLC or any of its affiliates, as of Oct. 31, 2020.

AT&T said it would support a smooth transition of support functions to Liberty. While services are moving from AT&T to Liberty, the company said clients may continue receiving messages referencing AT&T.

“We’re confident that Liberty will continue bringing high-quality communications services to the people of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, and that it’s equally committed to supporting these communities,” AT&T said.

In October 2023, the Independent Office for the Protection of Consumers of the Public Service Regulatory Board asked the island Telecommunications Bureau to investigate the problems confronted by AT&T customers with their mobile service as part of the migration to Liberty Mobile.

“Top executives of Liberty Mobile, in remarks to the media, acknowledged that they are in a process to update their systems and, as a result, customers have had inconveniences with their service,” the bureau said in a recent order.

The Telecommunications Bureau said it has received 66 complaints from Liberty Mobile Clients about the migration, which Liberty officials said has gone smoothly most of the time.

Some of the problems clients have confronted include the lack of service, not receiving calls, coverage, lack of compatibility with Android, broken equipment, issues with billing, poor service from customer service, and problems with phone calls when leaving Puerto Rico, the bureau said.

The regulatory entity seeks to investigate Liberty Mobile’s handling of the problem before and after the migration, the number of consumers who have been affected, the appropriate notification process for consumers before and after the event, the corrective measures used by Liberty Mobile, the existence of a mitigation plan and compensation to consumers for damages suffered.

Liberty Mobile was also required to explain in detail if it granted credits to customers in the municipalities of San Juan, Carolina and Trujillo Alto, whose service was affected by a breakdown that occurred on Dec. 9, 2023, when more than 28,000 customers experienced a lack of internet service for over 12 hours.

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