itxtme: I dont understand how they can charge you to have the phone sent away!? If that was me I would refuse to pay pointing out that the phone is not working and the CGA requires they fix replace or repair it. If it fails its warranty so be it, but you need to prove to me first that it did fail it. im not going to pay you to decide that!!
I think you would find it hard to get your phone repaired in today's climate unless you paid the fee. You get it back if the phone is covered, if not then you can get the phone back as is but pay the fee.
The CGA covers you when you have a valid complaint, if the device is found to have been damaged and to have voided a manufacturers warranty with proven damage they will not intervene.
Note the $55 upfront fee is common place amongst VNZ and TNZ dealers and is designed to weed out the customers who know they have damaged there phone or the the customers who refuse to pay the cost of assessing their phone when found to be BER or requiring a repair at cost.
I know the dealer i worked with recently did not charge this fee upfront. They would have many customers refuse to pay and deny damage and even customers who ignored their calls. They now charge the fee upfront as it was costing $1-1,500 annually. They have weeded out a lot of the customers as above and dont have the issues they had before.
Why should dealers pay when customers who damage there phones, knowingly and unknowingly dont want to.