publication date: Jun 10, 2012
author/source: Dean Dunham
Firstly, it is
obviously bad news for a retailer
when they have to accept a return
and pay you
back your money
and for this reason many will try their best to dissuade
from this course of action, whether it be by convincing you to accept an
instead of a refund
or simply telling you that you are not entitled to
. The good news is that the law
is very straightforward and clear and
the basic principles
are as follows:
- Goods you buy should always be in a satisfactory condition, defect free
and fit for the purpose they were intended when you receive them. If they are
not, you are entitled to a FULL REFUND.
- If you change your mind about something that you have purchased, the
retailer does not have to give you a refund IF this is the only reason for
- If you buy goods from a trader
without having face-to-face contact with them, this is known as distance
selling. In this situation you have
rights on top of those you have when you buy goods in a shop. The most
important of these is the right to a "cooling off" period. This gives you the
right to cancel your order within seven working days of the order, without
having to pay anything.
Here are some
of the common arguments
that retailers use and the truth
behind them."We do not give refunds on sale
Whether a retailer can do this or not depends on why the goods
were on sale. If they were reduced in price because of a fault that was either
pointed out to you or that you could have been 'reasonably' expected to notice
before you bought it, then you are not entitled to a refund. But, if it was
just on special offer or in the January sales, you are entitled to get your
money back if it turns out to have a fault, to have been inaccurately
described, or not fit for the purpose that it was sold for. "We don't offer refunds - you must
accept a credit note."
This is only legally acceptable if the goods you
are returning were of satisfactory quality, free from defect and fit for the
purpose for which they were intended."We can't do anything without a
There is no legal obligation for shops to even give you a
receipt, let alone for you to keep it. Shops should accept any proof of
purchase, like a bank statement or credit card bill. "It is not my fault if it doesn't
work. Make a complaint to the manufacturer."
It is the person who sold
you the goods with whom you have made a contract. They are therefore
responsible for dealing with any problems, and not the manufacturer. "It was fine when I sold it to you.
You must have broken it!"
If something breaks and you inform the
trader within six months of purchase it is the trader's duty to prove that the
item had no fault at the time it was sold to you.
information about your consumer rights
please visit Dean's website