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buying/selling at distance question


mcnumpty
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i purchased a fridge freezer from a well known retailer online--it turned out i had ordered the wrong item by mistake--i ordered a fridge freezer that was meant to be installed in a cupboard instead of free standing--i contacted the company i purchased it from and they are charging me £99.99 to take it back--i thought buying at distance meant i had up to 7 days from receiving the item to change my mind--they said its because the original packaging isnt with the item--but their delivery people removed the packing before even bringing the fridge freezer into my property--do i really have to pay such a large amount to return it--they also told me on the phone that if i kept the item and used it not installed in a cupboard i would invalidate the warranty which sounds peculiar--its due to go back tomorrow and i dont know whether to let them take it back or hold onto it untill i get some advice as once they have it i will have far less chance of getting the £99.99 sorted out as they will have the item and refund my credit card the purchase price minus the £99.99

 

any help is greatly appreciated

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The following are good references for all things DSR:

 

The OFT's Business Guide to DSR , and The OFT's Consumer Guide to DSR.

 

ithey said its because the original packaging isnt with the item

 

Can I insist that consumers who cancel an order within the cancellation period return the goods as new or in their original packaging?

3.58 No. Consumers are under a duty to take reasonable care of the goods while in their possession as discussed in paragraph 3.44. The DSRs allow consumers to examine goods they have ordered as they would in a shop. If that requires opening the packaging and trying out the goods then they have not breached their duty to take reasonable care of the goods. In these circumstances you cannot insist that consumers return the goods as new or in their original packaging. You may ask consumers to return goods with the original packaging, but you cannot insist on this. In the case of goods such as earrings that have hygiene seals, you may require consumers to exercise reasonable care by not removing the seals when examining them.

 

 

but their delivery people removed the packing before even bringing the fridge freezer into my property--do i really have to pay such a large amount to return it--they also told me on the phone that if i kept the item and used it not installed in a cupboard i would invalidate the warranty which sounds peculiar--its due to go back tomorrow and i dont know whether to let them take it back or hold onto it untill i get some advice as once they have it i will have far less chance of getting the £99.99 sorted out as they will have the item and refund my credit card the purchase price minus the £99.99

 

any help is greatly appreciated

Their Terms and Conditions must state that return postage be at the consumer's expense.

 

3.55 If you want the consumer to return the goods and to pay for that return, you must make it clear in the contract and as part of the required written information – see paragraph 3.10. You are not allowed to make any further charges, such as a restocking charge or an administration charge.

 

3.56 If you did not include these details in the required written information then you cannot charge anything.

 

This means that you can return the item yourself, should you wish. If they haven't mentioned return delivery in their Ts&Cs. then they should be paying for the return themselves.

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did you pay by credit card? If so, the card company have a part to play in this as they are jointly liable with the supplier.

 

If you didn't, follow my_real_name's advice above and let the company know you're keeping it safe for them to collect. The fact that there's no packaging isn't your fault.

 

Keep on at them, don't let them think that's the end of it.

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I would advise photographing the fridge before they take it, so you've got proof of the condition it was in when it left your property. Also be sure to get a receipt and if they make mention of a 'restocking fee' you don't have to pay that either!

 

HTH

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thanks for all the advice--i have read the small print on their website and unfortunately its does say they will charge £99.99 for returns--i assumed if it costs £20 to deliver it then it would cost £20 to return it--i guess that way they are really putting a restock charge in the return fee but are allowed to get away with it if the small print say £99.99--wont be buying from them again--on the phone they said we cant resell it and will have to scrap it--thats got to be a total lie--they are going to resell it as a returned item minus my £99.99--guess i am stuck with paying it but when i order another one its not coming from boots electrical--thanks for all the help

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They cannot charge you the fee even if it does say that.

Post by me are intended as a discussion of the issues involved, as these are of general interest to me and others on the forum. Although it is hoped such discussion will be of use to readers, before exposing yourself to risk of loss you should not rely on any principles discussed without confirming the situation with a qualified person.

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If they can deliver a fridge for £20, I want to know the carrier! Based on weight and size, the last quote I had was £68/40 plus VAT AND I had to have it strapped onto a pallet before they'd collect it!

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If they can deliver a fridge for £20, I want to know the carrier! Based on weight and size, the last quote I had was £68/40 plus VAT AND I had to have it strapped onto a pallet before they'd collect it!

 

 

i would imagine a company their size can negotiate a large discount based on the amount of items they send with them--excel logistics being who delivered it--and if they are making a loss on the delivery you can bet they just add that to the price of the item to begin with

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They can make you responsible for the return of the item but cannot specify a fee payable to themselves. I was assuming you could return it for under £100 yourself however, which was perhaps hasty.

Post by me are intended as a discussion of the issues involved, as these are of general interest to me and others on the forum. Although it is hoped such discussion will be of use to readers, before exposing yourself to risk of loss you should not rely on any principles discussed without confirming the situation with a qualified person.

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Tell them you'd happily pay the converse of their £20.00 delivery and unpacking fee as described in their original delivery contract.

 

To be fair excel will have delivered from their own depot as they store for a lot of retailers, in the instance of returning items there would be a collection and delivery cost which in reality would probably be in excess of £100.00 depending on your location from the nearest depot.

 

Domestic deliveries from corporations are rarely charged anywhere near true cost as they will rely on the sizeable margins on goods to offset losses for delivery.

 

I'd press them a little further and see if you can come to an amicable agreement, reminding them that you will be purchasing the correct item from them.

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I found this in the Distance Selling Regulations -

 

3.55 If you want the consumer to return the goods and to pay for that return, you must make it clear in the contract and as part of the required written information – see paragraph 3.10. If the consumer then fails to return the goods, or sends them at your expense, you can charge them the direct cost to you of the return, even if you have already refunded the consumer’s money. You are not allowed to make any further charges, such as a restocking charge or an administration charge.

 

There's aslo another entry regarding refunds -

 

3.48 The DSRs require you to refund any money paid by or on behalf of the consumer in relation to the contract to the person who made the payment. This means the full price of the goods, or deposit or prepayment made, including the cost of delivery. The essence of distance selling is that consumers buy from home and receive goods at home. In these circumstances, almost every case of home shopping will involve delivery of the goods ordered and so delivery forms an essential part of the contract.

 

The rules governing refunds are pretty clear too -

 

When do I have to refund a consumer’s money if they cancel

an order?

 

3.46 As soon as possible after the consumer cancels, and in any case within 30 days at the latest. You must refund the consumer’s money even if you have not yet collected the goods or had them returned to

you by the consumer. You cannot insist on the goods being received by you before you make a refund. See also paragraph 3.64.

 

If you're pragmatic about this, take the £20 charged up front off the £99.99 return fee and the deal starts to lok a little easier to swallow.

 

Given that it was originally your error that's probably not a bad result, but if you follow gezwee's advice and sweeten the deal with the purchase of the right item, you could return the first fridge when they deliver the second one and may not pay anything.

 

On a slightly frivolous note - it states on their website that they will take goods away for recycling and disposal for only £9.99. If can they deliver any amount of items for £19.99 and charge £9.99 for collection and disposal, I think they'd have a difficult job convincing a judge that is costs them £99.99 to collect items returned by customers. Remember they are not permitted to charge for re-stocking. They can only charge the direct cost of collection.

 

As DSRs do not permit them to withhold any of your funds from a refund, whether or not they have the returned items, they would have to make a seperate charge for the collection.

 

Why not ask them to scrap the fridge, expecially as the employee said it would be unsaleable and happily pay the £9.99 instead (since you due to get the £19.99 delivery charge back)?

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Good post rickyd.

 

Another thought: does the contract actually make the consumer responsible for returning the goods? Saying they charge £99 for returns is, IMO, not the same thing.

Post by me are intended as a discussion of the issues involved, as these are of general interest to me and others on the forum. Although it is hoped such discussion will be of use to readers, before exposing yourself to risk of loss you should not rely on any principles discussed without confirming the situation with a qualified person.

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It seems pretty clear to me that the statement "Please be careful when selecting your appliances to ensure they are the ones you require as we charge £99.99 for collection.". meana you don't need to return them, they will arrange to have them uplifted.

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They are making an offer to treat of £99 to pick the fridge up. You may make alternative (and no doubt cheaper) arrangements to have the fridge returned.

 

The retailer does not enjoy the right to specify how goods are returned.

 

excellent point, sorry I omitted that from my earlier reply. Thanks for pointing it out, it's a highly relevant and very useful point.

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thanks for all the advice--i tried again on the phone but they couldnt have cared less when i tried the buying another one and having them take the old one back when a new one was delivered--as for sending it back myself instead of them collecting it without the packaging i dont think a courier would have taken it--i gave up and had to swallow the £99.99 loss as my partner wanted a new fridge freezer as soon as possible and i had no where to store this one till i could try any other way of getting them to be at least a bit reasonable--so the new one arrives tomorrow from a different retailer--i will be here this time and will not be signing anything untill i am 100% happy--thanks once again for all your help

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