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Warning: Verizon Spiking Early Termination Fee

Like the whole ordeal, we like to keep our readers informed when something smells foul. Indeed, Verizon is beginning to cross into that foul territory by spiking its early termination fee. The move doesn't even seem coincidental, with new users flocking to the wireless carrier thanks to Motorola's swanky new DROID smartphone.

Starting November 15, customers who cancel their contracts early will be faced with an early termination fee of up to $350 USD per line. However, this only applies to devices the company deems as "Advanced Devices;" Verizon did not define the terminology although its assumed that it applies to smartphones and netbooks.

According to an obtained document announcing this new ETF change, the policy applies to both one and two year contracts; the fee kicks in if the service is disconnected prior to completing the minimum term. "The $350 ETF will decrease by $10 for each month of service completed," the company said.

ETF charges have been a hot topic with wireless carriers, consumers, and the government. Last year Verizon reached a $21 million settlement with a group of customers who sued the company over the outlandish fees (source). In California, a superior Court judge ruled that the practice of charging consumers a fee for ending their contracts early is illegal and violates California law (source).