What Happens If You Don’t Pay Your Verizon Bill?

As a Verizon customer, receiving your monthly bill is just part of the routine. You expect to see charges for your monthly service, taxes and fees. Paying your bill on time keeps your phone and internet running smoothly. But life happens and sometimes your bill is higher than normal or money is tight. If you miss paying your Verizon bill, you probably wonder about the consequences. Will your service get cut off? Will it impact your credit? Here’s a detailed look at what happens if you don’t pay your Verizon wireless or Fios bill.

Overdue Bills and Late Fees

Most of the time, your Verizon bill is due three to four weeks after you get it. Your account is past due if you don’t pay the full amount by that date. Depending on which amount is greater, Verizon will charge you a late fee that is usually 5% of the unpaid balance or $5. You’ll have to pay a $5 late fee if you only pay $50 of your $100 bill.

Verizon tacks on late fees to push customers to pay on time They want to avoid absorbing unpaid bills, Late fees start small but can add up over time if you continue missing payments Verizon caps wireless late fees at $7 per month and Fios late fees at $10 per month in most states,

Temporary Service Suspension

If your Verizon bill stays unpaid long enough, the next consequence is a service suspension About a week after your due date, Verizon may suspend one or all of your services temporarily if your account is past due. This applies to both wireless and Fios customers.

With wireless service Verizon may suspend your data first while leaving talk and text active for a time. If you don’t pay eventually they’ll suspend everything. For Fios customers, Verizon typically suspends all services at once when shutting off for nonpayment.

Temporary suspension serves as a warning to pay your bill immediately. Verizon leaves voice service on for wireless customers so you can still receive calls about paying your bill. If you pay within the suspension period, Verizon will restore your service within 1 business day.

Permanent Disconnection and Collections

Verizon will eventually cut off your services for good if you still haven’t paid your bill after your services have been suspended. Wireless customers typically get about 50 days past due before permanent disconnection. Fios allows 60-90 days before shutting off permanently.

Once permanently disconnected, it becomes much harder to restore your Verizon service. You’ll need to pay the full past due amount plus a $20 reactivation fee per line before they’ll turn it back on. Verizon will also run a credit check since disconnected accounts have proven unreliable at paying bills.

Beyond disconnection, Verizon can send severely delinquent accounts to collections after about 90-120 days past due. They sell the debt to a collections agency who will aggressively pursue payment. This dings your credit badly and the agency can sue you if you still refuse to pay.

Setting Up Payment Arrangements

The best way to avoid shutoffs and collections when you can’t pay your Verizon bill is by setting up a payment arrangement. Verizon gives all customers the ability to pay past due balances over time. Payment arrangements stop penalty actions while giving you time to come up with the money.

  • Schedule Future Payments – You can schedule 1 or 2 future payment dates to pay some or all of your past due balance. Verizon will automatically deduct payments from your credit card, debit card or bank account on the dates you specify.

  • Promise to Pay – With this option, you pick future payment dates but handle paying yourself when those dates arrive rather than Verizon deducting automatically. It puts more responsibility on you to follow through.

Payment arrangements are interest-free but Verizon does charge a $10 agent fee if you need help setting one up over the phone. Online and app-based self-service options are free. Act quickly if your service is already suspended – Verizon won’t restore it until the past due amount is paid in full or you have an arrangement set up.

Options If You Can’t Afford Your Bill

If you’re facing financial hardship and can’t reasonably afford your monthly Verizon bill, you have alternatives beyond nonpayment:

  • Explore Discounts – Verizon offers discounted plans for military, veterans, nurses, teachers, students and low-income households. You may qualify for 10-25% off your monthly service.

  • Change Plans – Downgrade to a cheaper Verizon plan with fewer features, less data or minutes, or switch to prepaid where you control exactly how much you pay each month.

  • Suspend Service – You can temporarily suspend phone or internet service with Verizon to stop monthly charges until you’re ready to turn it back on.

  • Cancellation – As a last resort, you can cancel Verizon service if you need to cut the expense. But beware early termination fees if under contract.

The bottom line is nonpayment will catch up with you eventually. Work with Verizon before it reaches the collections stage to make paying your bill more affordable. Your credit score will thank you.

FAQs About Unpaid Verizon Bills

Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about what happens when Verizon customers don’t pay their bill:

How long until Verizon suspends my service for nonpayment?

  • Wireless: About 1 week after your bill due date
  • Fios: 10 days after your due date

If my service is suspended, how long until Verizon disconnects it permanently?

  • Wireless: About 50 days past due
  • Fios: 60-90 days past due

How much is the Verizon reactivation fee if my service was disconnected?

Verizon charges $20 per line to restart service after disconnection.

How long until Verizon sends my account to collections?

About 90-120 days after your bill first becomes past due is when Verizon typically sends severely delinquent accounts to collections.

Can I stop a Verizon collection account from affecting my credit?

No, but paying the past due balance owed can help begin improving your credit score again.

What if I just cancel to avoid paying a past due Verizon bill?

Cancelling ends your services but you’ll still owe the unpaid balance which Verizon can send to collections.

If I file bankruptcy, will it clear my Verizon debts?

Maybe. Consumer debts like utility bills can be discharged through bankruptcy, but it depends on the type filed.

Don’t let unpaid Verizon bills pile up to the point of suspension, disconnection and collections. Stay proactive on payments or set up a payment plan if you anticipate falling behind. Protect your credit score and access to Verizon’s services by keeping your account in good standing.

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