Friday, 22 December 2017

Finance Fridays – Refunds and exchanges


We were looking at fake tickets and touts in last week's Finance Fridays. This week it is all about the rights you have when trying to obtain a refund or exchange. Next week the shops will be full of people trying to get their money back on Christmas gifts that are either unwanted or the wrong size or specification. Many people think they are legally entitled to get their money back regardless of the reason they want to return it. If you buy goods in a sale do you still have the same rights? Let's have a look at your refund rights.

How long do I have to return goods? - If the item isn't faulty then it is up the individual retailer. The company policy on refunds and exchanges is usually displayed either on the receipt or shown on a notice behind the till. If there isn't one displayed then they are obliged to meet the minimum requirements laid out in the Consumer Rights Act 2015. All refunds on goods which aren't faulty are essentially down to the goodwill of the retailer. Some retailers will exclude certain items from their refund policy such as personalised goods and those which they can't resell again such as perishable goods.

Do I need receipt? - It will certainly be much easier and quicker if you have a receipt. You might be able to show you have bought the item through a credit card or bank statement. Some shops will only be willing to offer an exchange or credit voucher if you don't have a receipt. This will be based on the current retail price so if the item has been reduced in a sale you won't get the original full price back.

What is the definition of faulty? - The goods must be of satisfactory quality, fit for purpose and as described. There are some important elements to this. Some retailers will accept an item is faulty if it is broken but not necessarily if it is not as described. For example if you bought a radio and on the box outside it said it was black but inside it was red then it is not as described.

I bought an item that I knew was faulty can I get a refund? - If the item was clearly marked as faulty, for example it had missing parts, then you are not automatically entitled to a refund.

I bought something in the sales but can I get a refund on it? - If the item is faulty without you knowing it then you same the rights to a refund whether you bought it full price or with a discount. If you have just changed your mind then a retailer may not give a refund on sale items or offer an exchange instead.

Can I get a refund for something I bought online?
- Items which have been purchased online, through a TV advertisement or channel, by mail order or phone or text are classed as 'distance selling'. This is now covered by the Consumer Contracts Regulations 2013. Goods purchased in this way have more generous refund rights. This is partly down to the fact that you have not seen the goods before buying them. You can request a refund up to 14 days after receiving the goods. You do not need to have a reason why you want to return it. However as with goods which were bought in a shop there are some conditions. The goods need to be returned in a saleable condition so items which have had the seal broken would not be allowed.

Have you had to return goods? Did you have a problem getting a refund?

Finance Fridays will be taking a Christmas break next as I shall be in my counting house. It will return full of New Year's resolutions on Friday 5th January 2018.

If you want to join in with this week's Finance Fridays then add your link to the linky below. Any post concerning financial matters is allowed. Full details here. It doesn't have to be published today as you have until 23.55 on Tuesday 26th December 2017 to join in.
Finance Fridays

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