Bright House customers find checks cashed over and over

A billing-processing error at Bright House Networks has thousands of customers discovering they've been billed multiple times on a single cable payment and that has led to hundreds of dollars in overdraft fees by financial institutions and depleted accounts.

"It's horrible," Deborah Holloway of Palm Bay told Local 6 news partner Florida Today. "There are a lot of people out a lot of money."

Holloway mailed in a check for $175.03 from her Bank of America account to Bright House last week only to discover on Tuesday that the check had been processed four times.

It's becoming a big problem for Bright House, which prides itself on customer service. Bright House Networks is the sixth largest owner and operator of cable systems in the U.S. and the second largest in Florida. The situation affected customers throughout Central Florida.

In a statement released Wednesday afternoon, Bright House Networks said it has been working with a third party payment processing vendor called Bill2Pay and Bank of America "to resolve a payment processing error. Corrective actions are underway and duplicate payments will be reversed and funds will be replaced."

"Less than 3,000 customers are affected — and all of the customers affected had written paper checks which are processed by Bill2Pay," Bright House said in its statement. "Bank of America will begin reversing those transactions to Bright House Networks customers' banks immediately — however, it may take up to 48 hours for customers' banks to process and for the reversal to be reflected on their accounts."

Bright House said customers who are affected can call Bright House Networks directly at the number on their statement. Customers should also contact the bank from which the check was written — banks such as Bank of America are removing any non-sufficient funds or overdraft fees that may have occurred as a result of this processing error.

Joe Green of Melbourne said he checked his account Wednesday and found it was depleted of at least $800 because of the Bright House accounting error.

His monthly $191 cable bill, which he pays by check, had been processed at least four times. Green immediately went to Space Coast Credit Union where he does his banking.

A spokeswoman for Space Coast Credit Union said about 250 of its customers were affected. The bill payment issue was caused by a defective file submitted by the telecommunications provider to SCCU. SCCU notified the provider once it identified the issue. The provider is working to refund its customers for the erroneous transactions.

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