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hi

 

hoping someone can put me on the right track on this one please :)

 

we bought our daughter a nintendo ds just under 6 months ago.

 

at the weekend, she opened the case as usual, and one of the hinges broke - we were present at the time, so are 100% sure the unit wasn't dropped or trodden on etc - simply the case opened as usual and the hinge broke.

 

we have the original receipt from toys r us, and the original box.

 

we returned to the store and spoke to their customer services. they called the manager of the electronics dept, who informed us that we needed a return code from nintendo themselves before they could do anything about this. he gave us the telephone number for nintendo and said we'd have to call them on monday (this was sunday) as they aren't there are weekends.

 

we weren't happy with this as had hoped toys r us would have simply replaced or refunded the item given it's less than 6 months old.

 

the manager was nearby, so we explained the situation to him. he said the same as the electronic manager - namely we needed a code, because "otherwise we can't get our money back on the unit from nintendo". he then said this wasn't a manufacturing fault, but the unit had been trodden on or deliberately broken - cue my daughter bursting into tears saying she hadn't done this, and me explaining once again that we were present when the unit broke etc etc.

 

he wouldn't budge and insisted we needed to speak to nintendo. however, he then walked off on us talking on his mobile phone. i then approached him to tell him what bad manners this was, to which he said he was contacting someone in the store to "see what he could do". i pointed out he should have told us to wait around if that were the case, not walk off without saying a word ! :mad:

 

anyhow, he returned to say they didn't have any pink nintendo DS or DS lites in the store, so we'd have to get a return code from nintendo and he could then refund or replace when they had stock...although he had no idea when that might be.

 

i then called the nintendo number toys r us gave me on monday morning to be told that they don't issue returns codes. when i told them toys r us had told me to call them for these, they said this has happened before and it is toys r us' responsibility to request a return code FROM THEIR SUPPLIER (i.e. not nintendo directly), not down to us to do this in any case. they also said they had made toys r us aware of this previously.

 

my wife then phoned the store again and spoke to the manager once again.

 

she told him that nintendo don't issue return codes, at which point he changed his story again (so obviously the whole nintendo return code thing was just a delaying tactic). this time he said he's not willing to do anything about this as our daughter had ABUSED the unit.

 

i then tried to find a central customer services number on the toys r us website, but nothing to be found, so i emailed them via their website/webform.

 

near the end of the day i got an email from them to say

 

"

Thank you for your recent e-mail.

We are sorry to hear that you have not been satisfied with the service provided by Toys R Us. We have forwarded all your details onto our Store Related Customer Services Department who will be in contact with you shortly.

"

 

any views on where i stand here, and who's best to go to in order to get a satisfactory resolution please?

 

thanks

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Not good, but a common problem unfortuantely!

 

I'm not an expert, but I'm guessing that the 'damage' is cosmetic and so Toys R Us can argue that it's not their responsibility.

 

The Sales of Goods Act does provide protection, and consumers generally have a lot of protection with goods which they buy. However, for the first six months the burden of proof lies with the retailer to prove the fault was NOT present when they sold the goods - which can prove difficult. Following this six month period, the burden of proof shifts to the consumer to prove the fault WAS present when the goods were bought - which can be equally as difficult. So it then becomes a battle of wills as to who will give in first - which, most of the time, is the consumer as they become intimidated by massive corporations which, most of the time, are in the wrong in the first place and bully-boy tactics win. However, more and more people (with support and renewed confidence) are taking on wrong do-ers and winning - this site is proof of that!!

 

You could contact Nintendo and ask them to repair/replace through the manufacturer's guarantee, as I am not sure that you will have much luck with the retailer (as proven by your previous visit). Nintendo are much more likely to honour the promise, albeit a "gesture of good will" rather than admit that they have supplied a faulty product.

 

However, it if becomes a matter of principle, then you can pursue Toys R Us, through their Head Office, as the manager has been unreasonable and unprofessional in his conduct, and failed to provide the standard of care expected from a large retailer, especially those who deal primarily in the market for children and that you found his conduct when dealing with a matter involving your statutory rights completely unacceptable.

 

Good luck!

  • Haha 1

Lived through bankruptcy to tell the tale! Worked in various industries and studied law at university. All advice is given in good faith only :)

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Also, the Sales of Goods Act provides:

 

- the goods are of a reasonable/merchantable quality

- fit for the purpose intended (which 99% of the times speaks for itself)

- conform to any description given as an invitation to treat

 

A customer is legally entitled to reject a product within a "reasonable" time - this period is mainly described as above, but varies from product to product. For example, what might be a reasonable time from purchasing a mobile phone will be different from purchasing a car.

 

Also worth noting that a retailer is legallyobliged to deal with any claim of "breach of contract" (i.e. the SOGA) for 6 years after purchase.

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Lived through bankruptcy to tell the tale! Worked in various industries and studied law at university. All advice is given in good faith only :)

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You're getting a lot of conflicting advice here, which is a shame, as it is really a very simple answer.

 

You need to write to Toys r Us. NOT Nintendo, your contract of purchase is not with them.

You say to TrU that the item is not of satisfactory quality, not fit for its purpose, and that you want it replaced asap, as per the Sales of Goods Act 1979 (amended)

You take great objection to the manager's comment stating that your daughter had "abused" the product, which has caused her a great deal of distress (don't be afraid to lay it as thick as you like here), and that you expect them to either be ready to PROVE the abuse in front of a judge or get their manager to apologise forthwith. You are shocked and disgusted about the way the manager spoke to you and your child.

 

You expect:

a) Immediate replacement of the faulty item with equivalent or superior product

b) A written apology from the manager of the store.

c) Even though compensation can never really fix the upset caused to your daughter, you expect the company to offer some type of compensation for wrongly accusing her, making her cry, and generally dealing with your customer statutory rights in such an unsatisfactory manner.

 

You give them 14 days to comply or you will take them to County Court. After 14 days, if no reply, or no satisfactory reply you write a 2nd letter expressing your disappointment, give them a final 14 days to comply. If no joy after the 28 days are up, you sue them. They have no chance of winning this.

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When you phone consumer direct they will give you a reference number, This number you add into any correspondence with Toys are us or Nintendo.

Consumer Direct will ask what you have done to date to correct the matter.

You can advice what has happened and what you yourelf are going to try to resolve, and that you would like to have this issue logged.

 

They are more than happy to do this for you, you can call them and update them as to your results and actions as you go through different stages

 

So which ever way you take your complaint Toys r us or Nintendo can not turn around in a few months and say sorry we have no records of your complaint and also your actions will be moniterd and advised as well as being directed on this forum.

 

However they will only take your call within the first 6 months of purchase.

 

The consumer Direct is a good safety net and are their for your protection use it its free.;)

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fantastic replies everyone ! much appreciated - i didn't know what i was/wasn't entitled to do before now, but you have clarified, which is REALLY appreciated.

 

i think i'll call consumer direct today to log it with them, and if the toys r us central customer services haven't been in touch by the end of the day, i'll post a letter FAO their customer services director/manager detailing it all, and specifying info as per bookworm's reply.

 

does that sound the best way forward to everyone ?

 

thanks everyone !

 

m

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As Bookworm has explained, your contract in law is with Toys r Us and not Nintendo. Concentrate all your efforts on TrU (updating Consumer Direct as you go along) and be sure to follow though any threat of legal action with that action too.

Jimbo 44 - always happy to help, but always willing to learn from being corrected too!!! Whilst any advice given may be based upon personal experience, please always be sure you seek guidance from a professional in the particular field.

 

Never be afraid to try something new. Remember that a lone amateur built the Ark, but a large group of professionals built the Titanic.

 

A 'click' on the scales is always appreciated if I have helped. Many Thanks!

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Which is why it is something not to be used off the cuff with out knowing the full implications..;)

 

Absolutely!!!!!

Jimbo 44 - always happy to help, but always willing to learn from being corrected too!!! Whilst any advice given may be based upon personal experience, please always be sure you seek guidance from a professional in the particular field.

 

Never be afraid to try something new. Remember that a lone amateur built the Ark, but a large group of professionals built the Titanic.

 

A 'click' on the scales is always appreciated if I have helped. Many Thanks!

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Wasn't the Hayes store by any chance was it? I used to work for them. They were going to put me on Customer Services until I warned them that I knew what the Sale of Goods Act was and the rights people had under them, and made it clear I was very honest...so they put me on tills. I also got into trouble for refusing to put through 'ghost' reward cards - customer doesn't want one, the total's above £100, 'oh, just swipe one through anyway for the targets, HO won't know...'

Didn't like working there.

-----

Click the scales if I've been useful! :)

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There is much more chance of this losing in court than it would do at winning - purely for my reasons above, the burden of proof is now with the consumer and not the retailer. The retailer would not have to prove abuse, the consumer would have prove there was no abuse - a difficult task. The consumer would not be considered an "expert" in relation to this matter, and therefore I am [quite] certain that if this went to court, it would not go in the favour of the consumer, hence my comments about taking advantage (on this occasion) of the manufacturers warranty to avoid further distress or upset. TrU are legally obliged to assist in claims, whether that is sorting it out at their level or arranging with the manufacturer for repair or replacement.

 

I'm not sure where the conflicting information comment came in. TrU are likely to not do anything about it, whereas the manufacturer may be more inclined.

Lived through bankruptcy to tell the tale! Worked in various industries and studied law at university. All advice is given in good faith only :)

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I would agree wholeheartedly with you when you say "...the burden of proof is now with the consumer and not the retailer...", Chesham, if the original purchase had been made over 6 months ago. However, in the first post it clearly says:

 

"we bought our daughter a nintendo ds just under 6 months ago"

 

and, as you say in Post #4:

 

"However, for the first six months the burden of proof lies with the retailer to prove the fault was NOT present when they sold the goods"

 

I would contend the burden of proof that the hinge was not 'faulty' in some way (an inherent weakness, maybe?) at the time of purchase lies with Toys r Us. I would also suggest that the '6 month clock was stopped' when the original complaint was made.

Jimbo 44 - always happy to help, but always willing to learn from being corrected too!!! Whilst any advice given may be based upon personal experience, please always be sure you seek guidance from a professional in the particular field.

 

Never be afraid to try something new. Remember that a lone amateur built the Ark, but a large group of professionals built the Titanic.

 

A 'click' on the scales is always appreciated if I have helped. Many Thanks!

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I'm not sure where the conflicting information comment came in.

 

It doesn't come into it at all hun so pay no mind to it!!.

 

As to have conflicting advice you have to have 2 pieces of advice that go against each other, the posts made had no conflict of any kind.

 

Unless you had a conflict against your self of course in your first 2 posts, so i would just ignore it.;)

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just to update, waiting for consumer direct to call me back - everyone there busy earlier when i called.

 

i also got a number for central TrU store complaints, and called that - to be told they'd only just got my email 5 minutes earlier (yeah right!)...and someone would call me back asap - that was over an hour ago.

 

Wasn't the Hayes store by any chance was it?

 

:eek: it was ! sounds like cr*p customer service is par for the course then.

 

lesson learnt here - don't buy anything electrical from TrU (in fact, don't think i'll be buying anything there in future after this shambles!)

 

cheers again for all the replies everyone,you've been a big help:)

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There is much more chance of this losing in court than it would do at winning

 

Incorrect - In court, what would apply would be the test of reasonableness. Is it reasonable that a game/item worth £100 + should break within 6 months of purchase? If the answeris no, judge would rule in favour of Claimant.

 

- purely for my reasons above, the burden of proof is now with the consumer and not the retailer.

 

Incorrect - The item broke before the 6 months reverse burden of proof deadline, as defined by SOGA.

 

The retailer would not have to prove abuse, the consumer would have prove there was no abuse - a difficult task.

 

Incorrect - The test of reasonableness as per above applies, if Claimant states that item broke in the conditions as described, it would be up to Defendant to prove otherwise.

 

The consumer would not be considered an "expert" in relation to this matter, and therefore I am [quite] certain that if this went to court, it would not go in the favour of the consumer, hence my comments about taking advantage (on this occasion) of the manufacturers warranty to avoid further distress or upset.

 

Incorrect - Even if OP were to claim under manufacturer's warranty, he would still be expected to go through retailer, not directly to manufacturer. As stated before, the contract, and therefore responsability, is with retailer, NOT manufacturer.

 

TrU are legally obliged to assist in claims, whether that is sorting it out at their level or arranging with the manufacturer for repair or replacement.

 

Correct. Which is what I said all along.

 

I'm not sure where the conflicting information comment came in.

 

From some people saying "go to Nintendo", some saying SOGA runs out at 6 months, some saying that as the damage was cosmetic, TrU could say it wasn't their responsability, etc etc...

 

TrU are likely to not do anything about it, whereas the manufacturer may be more inclined

 

And if TrU refuse to do anything about it, they are in clear breach of SOGA and they get sued. Yet again, it has nothing to do with manufacturer.

 

Involving Consumer Direct is ok, but in most cases, consumers who know their rights get further and with better results in simple matters like this one. But it's always a good idea to let them know what's going on. It also allows them to collate the information, so that if more DS start having the same problem, they'll be able to act on that.

 

I hope this clarifies matters. :-)

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I had a similar problem with my lads DS - argos won't hep because we don't have the receipt (it was a Christmas present from grandparents) :(

Looks like there are some dodgy hinges out there :(

Poppynurse :)

 

If my comments have been helpful please click my scales!!!!

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Oh, and just to help with the "abuse" nonsense:

 

Nintendo fesses up to DS Lite hinge defect, will fix for free - Engadget

 

and you'll find plenty more by searching Google....:rolleyes:

 

Poppynurse, haven't the grandparents got a receipt? a credit card receipt? Bank statement showing purchase? If you want to discuss it, start a new thread so your issue and MF1's issue don't get confused.

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.....Involving Consumer Direct is ok, but in most cases, consumers who know their rights get further and with better results in simple matters like this one. But it's always a good idea to let them know what's going on. It also allows them to collate the information, so that if more DS start having the same problem, they'll be able to act on that.

 

I agree.

 

The other reason I support notifying Consumer Direct in cases like this is that there is independent corroboration that a complaint has been made on such and such a date should things get difficult later on.

Jimbo 44 - always happy to help, but always willing to learn from being corrected too!!! Whilst any advice given may be based upon personal experience, please always be sure you seek guidance from a professional in the particular field.

 

Never be afraid to try something new. Remember that a lone amateur built the Ark, but a large group of professionals built the Titanic.

 

A 'click' on the scales is always appreciated if I have helped. Many Thanks!

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thanks for the URL bookworm - VERY helpful once again :)

 

to update....

 

consumer direct called me back first thing this morning and logged the case etc.

 

their line was pretty much as advised here - i.e. within 6 months, sales of goods act 1979 (amended) etc - they suggested putting a letter to the store manager and the central cust svs manager saying i want a replacement unit or refund under my statutory rights.

 

i spoke to toys r us to get their central address, and finally spoke to someone. she got back to me within 30 minutes and said the best they are willing to do is send the unit back to nintendo to repair - although there may be a charge for this, and if so, we'll need to pay it :eek:

 

back on the phone to consumer direct. this time the person i spoke to said basically, if they are offering to repair, that's fine, but it must be FOC. letter then amended to say

 

"

I wish to get this unit repaired under my statutory rights, free of charge.

The burden of proof is on you, the trader, to prove this is not a manufacturing fault.

Please respond to my complaint within 7 days.

"

from the link posted, it looks to me pretty likely that nintendo will fix for free, but is the above wording the best route in your opinions, or should i still be asking for a replacement or refund first and foremost ?

thanks in advance for the help again

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..and to add....i've spoken to nintendo and they haven't accepted a fault with hinges (there's a surprise!). apparently they will look at these issues sensitively and either swap the unit out FOC (they don't repair these hinges apparently) or charge £25 to do it.

 

but they waiting list for pink units is 6-8 weeks :(

 

hmm.......

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Ok, 6-8 weeks is not a reasonable time for repairs, so you can go back to TrU and tell them that as you got it from the horse's mouth that it would take that long to get if fixed, you are not prepared to wait that long, ad you either wish them to replace it, and if they don't have it, you want a refund so you can and get a replacement where they will have it. Be warned that they will dig their heels more than ever, you'd think it was their own money the way they try to hold on to it!!!

 

But I think you have a perfectly valid case here for refund, IF TrU can't give you a replacement.

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