Bell Mobility’s phantom services

Lawyers pushing a class-action lawsuit against Bell Mobility are trying to expand it to include rural Yukon. The lawsuit accuses the telco of charging customers for 911 services they couldn't receive.

Lawyers pushing a class-action lawsuit against Bell Mobility are trying to expand it to include rural Yukon.

The lawsuit accuses the telco of charging customers for 911 services they couldn’t receive.

Whitehorse is the only jurisdiction in the North that has 911 services.

Yellowknife resident James Anderson filed the original lawsuit in 2007.

He was always bothered by the fact he was being charged for a service that he couldn’t access.

“At the time there wasn’t much competition for cellphones, Bell Mobility was the big player,” said Anderson. “You either paid the monthly fee or you didn’t get a phone. “

Last year, the lawsuit was certified as a class action.

It started in the Northwest Territories, but Tuesday a motion was presented to expand the suit to include Nunavut and rural Yukon communities.

Bell no longer charges for 911 services on new plans in regions where it’s not available.

But for several years Bell Mobility had been charging northern customers 75 cents a month, $9 a year, for 911 services that didn’t exist.

Individually it’s a small amount of money, but spread out over several years and thousands of customers, it could be millions of dollars.

“The action was commenced for $6 million,” said Keith Landy who is representing the class action. “It’s sort of a round number until we actually find out what it is.”

On Tuesday, Landy argued all customers who were charged for non-existent 911 services should automatically be included in the suit.

The lawsuit has been in the works for several years, but it could drag on for several more, said Landy.

“It really depends how strongly Bell continues to oppose this claim,” he said. “But we’re hopeful that they will want to treat their subscribers fairly and try to get this matter resolved as soon as possible.”

Bell Mobility refused to comment on the case because it’s still before the court.

Contact Josh Kerr at

joshk@yukon-news.com

Just Posted

Northwestel says it is investigating into the cause of the total communications blackout throughout the territory after a power failure in Whitehorse on Wednesday night.
Internet outage prompts criticism on Dempster fibre project delays

The Liberals responded that they have proceeded cautiously to avoid high costs.

A motorcycle with driver pulled over on the right side of the North Klondike Highway whose speed was locked in at 171 kilometres per hour. (Courtesy/Yukon RCMP)
Patrols of Yukon highways find poorly-secured loads, intoxicated drivers

The ongoing patrols which police call ‘Operation Cooridor’ is mainly focused on commercial vehicles.

Awaken Festival organizers Meredith Pritchard, Colin Wolf, Martin Nishikawa inside the Old Firehall in Whitehorse on May 11. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Performing arts fest plans to awaken artistic talent in Whitehorse and the rural North

‘A value of ours is to make theatre as accessible as possible.’

April Mikkelsen tosses a disc during a ladies only disc golf tournament at Solstice DiscGolfPark on May 8. John Tonin/Yukon News
Yukon sees its first-ever women’s disc golf tournament

The Professional Disc Golf Assocation had a global women’s event last weekend. In the Yukon, a women’s only tournament was held for the first time ever.

Dave Blottner, executive director at the Whitehorse Food Bank, said the food bank upped its services because of the pandemic. (John Tonin/Yukon News)
Food Bank sees Yukoners’ generosity firsthand

“Businesses didn’t know if they could stay open but they were calling us to make sure we were able to stay open.”

More than 25,000 people have received the firsdt dose of the vaccine, according to the Yukon government. (Black Press file)
Yukon has now vaccinated 76 per cent of eligible adults

The territory has surpassed its goal of 75 per cent as a first step toward ‘herd immunity’

A prescribed burn is seen from the lookout at Range Road and Whistle Bend Way in Whitehorse May 12. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
Editorial: Are you ready for a forest fire?

Citizens for a Firesmart Whitehorse have listed some steps for Yukoners to boost safety and awareness

Caribou pass through the Dempster Highway area in their annual migration. A recent decision by the privacy commissioner has recommended the release of some caribou collar re-location data. (Justin Kennedy/Yukon News)
Privacy commissioner recommends release of caribou location data

Department of Environment says consultation with its partners needed before it will consider release

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Family pleased youth will be able to get Pfizer vaccine

Angela Drainville, mother of two, is anxious for a rollout plan to come forward

Safe at home office in Whitehorse on May 10, 2021. (John Tonin/Yukon News)
Federal government provides $1.6 million for Yukon anti-homelessness work

Projects including five mobile homes for small communities received funding.

Drilling at Northern Tiger’s 3Ace gold project in 2011. Randi Newton argues that mining in the territory can be reshaped. (Yukon government/file)
Editorial: There’s momentum for mining reform

CPAWS’ Randi Newton argues that the territory’s mining legislations need a substantial overhaul

At its May 10 meeting, Whitehorse city council approved the subdivision for the Kwanlin Dün First Nation’s business park planned in Marwell. (Submitted)
KDFN business park subdivision approved

Will mean more commercial industrial land available in Whitehorse

Most Read