Apple refuses to return repaired iPhone to owner

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Comments

  • Reply 21 of 189
    mactelmactel Posts: 1,275member
    Get a Droid. If it is stolen it'll be returned to its owner magically. Droid does where iPhone doesn't.
  • Reply 22 of 189
    bw58bw58 Posts: 2member
    Seems that the "owner of record" for a phone would be whoever is paying the bill for the phone number associated with the iPhone. So it would be (should be) easy to determine whether whoever is requesting a replacement via Applecare is the legitimate owner.



    This assumes that the phone was activated at the time that it was stolen (which appears to be the case).



    bw
  • Reply 23 of 189
    So it seems like she should just file a police report and get her phone back...!?
  • Reply 24 of 189
    esummersesummers Posts: 909member
    I imagine the phone was stolen then sold on eBay. If they were to give the phone back to her they would be taking it away from the new owner (who is not the thief). It is a tricky situation. I'm not sure what the legal precedent is on this. If they properly escalated the issue with Apple, my guess is that the law does not work in the victims favor.



    Although anyone buying an Apple product on eBay should get the serial number and check with Apple to see if it is stolen first. You should also report a product stolen to Apple. They will put it in their records. Also make sure when you buy an Apple product on eBay that they transfer AppleCare to the new owners name. There are instructions to do this on Apple's web site.



    Seriously, eBay should be requiring this or at least put up a disclaimer in the Apple section of the site. I would guess that a large percentage of Apple products and video game consoles are stolen because they have a high resale value.



    Everyone has had property stolen from them at some point. You do what you can to prevent it, but ultimately you just need to write it off and move on.
  • Reply 25 of 189
    esummersesummers Posts: 909member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bw58 View Post


    Seems that the "owner of record" for a phone would be whoever is paying the bill for the phone number associated with the iPhone. So it would be (should be) easy to determine whether whoever is requesting a replacement via Applecare is the legitimate owner.



    This assumes that the phone was activated at the time that it was stolen (which appears to be the case).



    bw



    The phone contract is tied to the SIM card not the phone.
  • Reply 26 of 189
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by a_greer View Post


    I am not a lawyer, but one has to assume that if she called the police, and they dedicated manpower to do a search, there is a report for that somewhere, maybe not a serial number, but certinly at least a list, something like "items stolen, 1 handbag, content of bag: wallet containing x credit/debit cards, y ID cards, and $z in cash, wireless phone, makeup, etc" or perhaps just "item reported stolen stolen: wireless phone" Or perhaps there is a 911 tape that would suffice, if she mentioned the stolen items in the call it should appear in a police report as the reason for dispatch.



    Apple has evidence in the form of original sales docs that it belongs to the victim...this should be an open and shut case...



    Your correct, you aren't a lawyer, because if any law student peddled what you just said, you're professor would laugh at you.



    1) Proof of sale != proof of ownership. Items can be sold to other people.

    2) Because of point one, the assailant can simply say that she sold the phone to the thief. The burden of proof is on HER to prove that she is right, not that the thief is wrong. And with millions of BS circumstances, it will easily devolve into he said/she said arguments (and instantly thrown out).

    3) If something is important to go to court over, there should be a police report. Apple CANNOT believe every person that says X phone is theirs because it has their info on it. It would be way too easy for criminals to abuse that system.

    4) Again, police reports!!!



    I do feel sorry for this person, but let this be a lesson to everyone. If you want to get back your stuff, FILE A POLICE REPORT. Nothing other than that will 100% guarantee you'll get your stuff back should it be known where it is located. Also, keep serial numbers of everything.
  • Reply 27 of 189
    sheffsheff Posts: 1,407member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by g3pro View Post


    "Do No Evil". Heh, yeah right.



    As someone pointed out that is google's motto. Apple's is something like "do as Steve does". (and Steve does not give away any of his products for cheap)



    Here is my argument in this story:



    1. The phone was brought in for repair.

    2. In order to be repaired your would need to scan the serial number in to see if it is still under warranty.

    3. Serial number is confirmed to be under warranty, which means the phone is not too old. (which implies a cancellation fee if used under 2 years).

    4. THis is a phone, and not and iPod Touch.

    5. Phones have calling plans, which tie the phone with a serial number to a phone account with a phone number.

    6. Phone numbers are assigned to people, who in turn have names that can be proven through picture ID.



    Therefore: If a person A can provide a current monthly ATT bill (no cancellation fee), on which the phone serial is listed and or a proof of purchase, and the person B has niether ATT iPhone service nor a proof of purchase (Amazon or ebay reciept of purchase of the phone) then the phone belongs to the person A without a shadow of doubt. Couple that with a call to the police, which can be checked through phone records at police department in NY (probably pretty technologically advanced) and the phone should have been returned.
  • Reply 28 of 189
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bdkennedy1 View Post


    There must be more to this story, because it's ridiculous.



    If her name is linked to the serial number then it's her phone. Surly she has a receipt or the original packaging which also has the serial number on it. When you take that into consideration along with the fact that the police department contacted Apple, this is a case of someone at Apple being a total douche bag.



    This is poor PR to receive over a stupid situation.



    And what happens if she sold the phone? How do you take into account that? Because she'll still have the original receipt (who hands over original receipts when they sell stuff? No one.)



    Someone at the police department contacting Apple is NOT the same as her filing a police report. This is a case where the law is clear. If we start bending the laws for obvious rightful circumstances, obvious criminal cases will start using the law in their favor. Don't think that what is done here is done in isolation.
  • Reply 29 of 189
    bw58bw58 Posts: 2member
    I've never had to deactivated a phone, but I'd assume that the carrier would verify that the "owner of record" for a phone was the one asking to have the phone deactivated (?).



    That is: if a phone were stolen [and sold on eBay] wouldn't the phone have to be deactivated by someone (either the person who stole the phone or the person who bought the stolen phone) before it could be activated [by the new "owner"].



    Also, just because you bought something in good faith doesn't mean you get to keep it if it's found to be stolen goods (and the real owner manages to track you down, proves that the item was stolen and provides proof of ownership -- 'cept maybe in Louisiana, I think).



    bw
  • Reply 30 of 189
    vtrainvtrain Posts: 10member
    Apple has no legal right or ability to seize property from someone who is in possession of a product, whether it is stolen or not. They are not the government.
  • Reply 31 of 189
    esummersesummers Posts: 909member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bw58 View Post


    I've never had to deactivated a phone, but I'd assume that the carrier would verify that the "owner of record" for a phone was the one asking to have the phone deactivated (?).



    That is: if a phone were stolen [and sold on eBay] wouldn't the phone have to be deactivated by someone (either the person who stole the phone or the person who bought the stolen phone) before it could be activated [by the new "owner"].



    Also, just because you bought something in good faith doesn't mean you get to keep it if it's found to be stolen goods (and the real owner manages to track you down, proves that the item was stolen and provides proof of ownership -- 'cept maybe in Louisiana, I think).



    bw



    Unfortunately there is no way to brick any phone with a SIM card. You can only deactivate the SIM card. With mobileMe you can remotely put a password on your phone or you can put one on yourself in advance. I'm not sure if that prevents software restore though.



    Most likely the phone was sold to a new owner who had damaged their own phone. They would simple have to swap the SIM card and now the phone is working on their plan.
  • Reply 32 of 189
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by QuitCrying View Post


    I'm on the side with apple. How do you know she didn't sell the phone. The buyer never registered the phone to them and the victim was still receiving emails on repairs. The victim decides she wants the phone back. Why didn't file a police report? How does apple know this is still her phone??? Go file a police report and get your phone back.



    Apple could have asked for proof of AppleCare that they give you when you register a device. When you get that form in the mail it says to keep it for proof of coverage. When sale of a covered item occurs you have to get the warranty transferred or it is not valid for the new owner.



    If she called the police & they searched for it why was no report filed?



    There is a lot to this story that is missing, terrible bit of journalism.
  • Reply 33 of 189
    esummersesummers Posts: 909member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sheff View Post


    As someone pointed out that is google's motto. Apple's is something like "do as Steve does". (and Steve does not give away any of his products for cheap)



    Here is my argument in this story:



    1. The phone was brought in for repair.

    2. In order to be repaired your would need to scan the serial number in to see if it is still under warranty.

    3. Serial number is confirmed to be under warranty, which means the phone is not too old. (which implies a cancellation fee if used under 2 years).

    4. THis is a phone, and not and iPod Touch.

    5. Phones have calling plans, which tie the phone with a serial number to a phone account with a phone number.

    6. Phone numbers are assigned to people, who in turn have names that can be proven through picture ID.



    Therefore: If a person A can provide a current monthly ATT bill (no cancellation fee), on which the phone serial is listed and or a proof of purchase, and the person B has niether ATT iPhone service nor a proof of purchase (Amazon or ebay reciept of purchase of the phone) then the phone belongs to the person A without a shadow of doubt. Couple that with a call to the police, which can be checked through phone records at police department in NY (probably pretty technologically advanced) and the phone should have been returned.



    It sounds like the obvious thing to do... but I'm pretty sure that is not the legal thing to do. Apple, being an entity that does not want to be sued, is going to do the legal thing.



    By the way, the phone is not tied to a calling plan with AT&T. And if that were the case, there would be no reason to steal the phone in the first place. I think the phone is tied to the calling plan with Verizon, but I'm not positive.
  • Reply 34 of 189
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post


    Agreed. One individual out of millions gets their iPhone stolen, fails to take advantage of the proper legal remedy, and it's news?



    i know right? who cares?

    i wonder if there are that many news of stolen winmo phones
  • Reply 35 of 189
    g3prog3pro Posts: 669member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post


    It's clearly not so simple. Besides, I thought that's Google's supposed motto, not Apple's.



    Apparently it should be its motto. LOL.
  • Reply 36 of 189
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by g3pro View Post


    Apparently it should be its motto. LOL.



    ummm.. ok?
  • Reply 37 of 189
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by MacTel View Post


    Droid does where iPhone doesn't.



    That's really untrue. Droid can't pinch & zoom, droid can't access over 100,000 apps, droid can't talk& browse, droid can't even claim itself as a robot. WOW! It even slides out with a keyboard!! "Ooooo. Magical."

    It's just cheap talk.(I've experienced a droid.)



    Other than the droid, this lady should be getting her phone back. And apple & at&t does have proof. The lady must still carry and have the box with the serial number, the phone must have the serial number, the reciept must have her serial number, heck! Even at&t emailed her the serial number.

    Even though you're not carrying a police report, you yourself & apple/at&t should have full proof of a purchased device and a serial number and account name from that serial number.
  • Reply 38 of 189
    Can I prove ownership with a receipt for the phone? Perhaps a series of bills stating my name, address, phone listed on plan from my AT&T online account or the last bill from the month that it was stolen? Can the Police write a report from a that happened days, weeks or months ago? I would camp out at the store that the phone was left at and produce the documents and wait for the criminal to arrive. Apple and AT&T should grow some stones and do the right thing. If you can produce those documents I would challenge the criminals claim of ownership.
  • Reply 39 of 189
    Calling this journalism, even though you qualify it with the

    Modifier "bad" is beyond a stretch. The way this tale jumps from AT&T to Apple, one would think they were the same company.



    I have sold and gifted iPhones and still have the original receipts. For some unknown reason, the second parties never asked for a bill of sale. Sounds like Apple is being prudent and the AI contributor is racking the muck a bit too deeply.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hezekiahb View Post


    Apple could have asked for proof of AppleCare that they give you when you register a device. When you get that form in the mail it says to keep it for proof of coverage. When sale of a covered item occurs you have to get the warranty transferred or it is not valid for the new owner.



    If she called the police & they searched for it why was no report filed?



    There is a lot to this story that is missing, terrible bit of journalism.



  • Reply 40 of 189
    chris_cachris_ca Posts: 2,543member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by alexhasfun28 View Post


    Other than the droid, this lady should be getting her phone back. And apple & at&t does have proof. The lady must still carry and have the box with the serial number, the phone must have the serial number, the reciept must have her serial number, heck! Even at&t emailed her the serial number.

    Even though you're not carrying a police report, you yourself & apple/at&t should have full proof of a purchased device and a serial number and account name from that serial number.



    As others have noted, proof of purchase means nothing excpt that you purchased it. It does not mean you still own it.

    A police report would be used to show current ownership.
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