The Playgoer: What Happens to Unused Subscriptions When the Company Folds?

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Wednesday, July 29, 2009

What Happens to Unused Subscriptions When the Company Folds?

So say your local theatre company goes under--and takes your unfulfilled subscription with them. Can't believe it? Apparently it's happened with the defunct North Shore Music Theatre in MA.

Luckily, someone asked that the other day of a Boston Globe advice column.

In brief, call your credit card company asap.

As you have found, dealing with a defunct business can be enormously frustrating and present an often insurmountable challenge. In a bankruptcy, you’ll likely be pushed to the back of the pack - after creditors with more standing are paid. And, as is typical in these cases, at best you’ll receive a small fraction of what is owed.

After speaking with you, I found that you contacted the credit card company, which was the right action to take. But beware: The Fair Credit Billing Act gives consumers 60 days after the receipt of a credit card statement to object to a charge.

Now, you should lodge a formal complaint with the state attorney general’s office. The theater seemingly handled the money it collected differently when you paid than afterward. And there is some question about representations made to folks like yourself in its solicitation for ticket sales.

Um, good luck, citizen. For the rest of us, take the lesson to heart. These days, it could happen to you, too.


Art said...

A consortium of theaters banded together here in Massachusetts.

Their purpose for the alliance was to help these subscribers.

Basically, they said they would honor season tickets from the defunct North Shore Music Theatre.

Playgoer said...

That's actually a fantastic, encouraging, noble, and SMART thing for them to do! Thanks for sharing, Art.