Recently, we opened our credit card bill to see charges we did not recognize and/or want. A phone call to the companies making the charges revealed they were automatic renewals for magazine and technology services.
The companies might or might not have sent a letter advising us of an automatic renewal. Since all of us are inundated with information, these letters/emails can easily go unread. The companies should apprise you that the subscription or service will soon be cancelled unless you the consumer elects to continue. How annoying to be charged without your consent.
Thinking that I am sure I am not alone, I went online to see what other people were experiencing with unwanted renewal fees. Sure enough people are upset. One person was upset about the automatic renewal of his car insurance. Each year he shops the market and changes if there is a savings. After signing with a new insurance company, he saw the charges on his credit card bill for his old policy. He called them. A refund was given.
Refunds are not always given for automatic renewals. My husband was charged for a renewal of an internet classmate locator service. He called and said he had not wanted to renew. Too bad, too late. No refund.
This was the case for a person who had signed up for three months with a babysitting company. After three months he had another charge on his credit card. This company would not refund the charge, only cancel the membership.
How can you prevent this from happening? When you enter into a contract for services or subscriptions, note the date the agreement is up. Have a tickler system via computer or hard copy as to when that agreement is up. Then, make sure you let the company know before the agreement is up that you are not renewing. You may need to give a 30 - 60 - or 90+ days notice depending on your contract.