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Freespirit1928

Telly tablet stopped working. Seller wont refund

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I purchased a Virgin telly tablet from an eBay shop called Fone_Central in July 2019. It was brand new and sealed. After 6 weeks it stopped working. The screen went black and it wouldn't do anything.

 

I contacted the seller who in turn asked me to contact the manufacturer (Exertis) who said they couldn't help as they only dealt with items sold directly through Virgin. They were confused as to how I purchased a brand new device through an eBay shop. Although they had no obligation, they talked me through a system re-boot which failed.

I returned the device to the eBay shop. They said the unit had burned out inside as a direct result of me using the device whilst charging and that I had forced the charger into the charging port and bent the pin. I had used the device whilst charging but never forced the charger pin into the device.

 

They sent me a photo of a bent charging pin. I'm not convinced it was mine. This is the second Virgin Telly tablet i have had. I had my first one for 2 years and used it in exactly the same way. I dropped it and broke the screen, hence my new purchase. 

 

I said I wanted a refund or a brand new tablet. They refused but said as a gesture of goodwill they would lef me have a second hand one. I wasnf happy with this and I opened a case with PayPal but they wouldn't do anything as it was a warranty issue.

 

I spoke to Exertis again who told me there would be no warranty with the device as it was bought from Virgin as a job lot of discontinued or over stocked items and in any case the warranty would be void if the device had been opened.

 

I contacted the seller again and advised them of this. They said they hsdnt opened the unit but my argument is, how can they have known it was burnt out inside if they hsdnt opened it.

 

I expected the eBay shop to return the device to me but I heard nothing. I contacted them and said I wanted it back so I could get a local company to inspect it.

 

They told me they had sent it to their disposal section and would need to search for it. This was late November. I have contacted them several times since and they keep giving me excuses as to why they haven't located it yet.

 

What can I do?
 

Edited by slick132
Spacing added to make post legible

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I'm sorry that you posted this question about your telly tablet and it's received no response. It could be because you have posted such a large block of text that it makes it very difficult for people to read through and so they tend to give up before they reach the end.

Please could you make your posts in a more readable format – well spaced and punctuated.

What you're describing in your first paragraph is well known – the seller refers you to the manufacturer. In fact the supplier is passing the buck. The manufacturer may be helpful but has no responsibility towards you because your contract is with the seller..

You say that the seller had no obligation to you – but you are completely wrong. They had every obligation and talking you through the reboot was helpful, but of course they then pass the buck onto the manufacturer.

It's a shame that you waited so long to come to us because under the consumer rights act, if the unit failed in the way that it did within six months then you had a statutory right to a repair or replacement if the unit had failed. It would have been much easier to assert this right and then to take action. I'm afraid that it is now beyond six months.

However, you have not lost your rights and you can still force the issue if you want. What is the value of the item? You don't say.

Secondly, do you know where this eBay shop is based in the country? If they are reachable then you could write them a letter telling them that you want the unit repaired or replaced – if they don't respond within, say, seven days then you could issue a letter of claim and then sue them.

I would expect that the item is fairly low value and that means that they would have so much hassle defending because they would have to travel to your local court and also risk having to cough up your court fees if you win that it is very likely that they would put their hands up.

You need to give us a bit more detail about the value and where are they in respect of you


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In fact because your story is so difficult to read, it's only on a second or third reading that I have suddenly appreciated that they have possession of your item and that it now seems to have been lost by them.

This is actually extremely helpful to you. If you can let us know about the value of this and where this company is in respect of you – do they have a physical existence somewhere, then we will help you draft a letter of claim – I think you should move directly to a 14 day warning and then bring a Canticle action.

Your chances of success are better than 95%. I don't know what the value of the item is but it can't be very much – they were very silly if they defended but of course you will have to enforce the judgement against them but as long as they can you found, it may not be too difficult


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First post edited with paragraphs to make it easier to read.


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Thank you so much for your response.

It was purchased from an Ebay shop called Fone_Central

They are based at Office 107, 250 York Road

London Sw11 3SJ. I am in Nottinghamshire 

It cost £250

I messaged them again last week to ask if they have found it but they haven't responded

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Do you know if the address that you have discovered is actually their trading address or simply a registered address of their company? If it is simply a registered address then there won't be any assets there to seize if you get a judgement – as you surely will.

You need to check that address and see if there happens to be loads of other companies registered there and then you also need to discover the trading address where any of their assets are likely to be.

You say that you have been in contact with the seller – and that they even said that they hadn't opened the box. Was this contact on the telephone or do you have this in writing?


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I have done some digging. The registered address is on Gateside Road in London. The address on York Road is the address I returned the tablet to their returns department.

I had contact through ebay messenger and have copies of one message which says the device was damaged internally and another which statesScreenshot_20200211-172728_Chrome.thumb.jpg.c27b640c7ef40bc7d7a5c71ffc183ed6.jpg emphatically that they have not opened it.

Screenshot_20200211-173646_Chrome.jpg

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Presumably this was a USB charger – do USB charging sockets have charging pins? If it wasn't a USB charger then are you able to find a picture to show us?

Anyway I think what has become interesting is that they can't even produce your original item. I think that gives you an additional cause of action and possibly in a way that they are more vulnerable.

What troubles me is that looking on Google for this company I find that the address that you have given is simply a storage facility – a commercial storage facility which suggests to me that maybe there are a number of storage units there and they are operating at one of them. It seems to me to be of any generalised address.

Once again, it's a simple matter to issue proceedings. In your case I would imagine is a fairly simple matter to obtain a judgement. But sending county court bailiffs around (who are basically very little more than pussycats) to carry an enforcement could be a problem and so you may end up with a judgement, with no enforcement and also having to bear the costs of the action as well as the £50 or so for the enforcement.

 


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It's not a USB. They sent me this photo and said I had bent the pin by forcing it into the charging poin

1. I have never forced it - there is no need.

2. I am not convinced the photo is of my charger but i cant be 100% and i have no way or proving this one way or the other.

Screenshot_20200211-231339_Chrome.jpg

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Well I would have thought those pins were extremely difficult to bend and to bend it that much would actually cause damage to the unit.

However, the main issue now is that they seem to have lost your unit. I think this means that if you issue a claim you will have an easy win. They are not even able to produce it in evidence.

Do you haven't who have kept the serial number of the unit you sent them? In case another one mysteriously turns up which happens to have an appropriate damage in an appropriate place. If you have a serial number then you are able to doublecheck that it is actually yawn.

The problem remains – the problem of enforcement.

If the address you have given is their warehouse then there may be no difficulty in forcing. If they are decent responsible company then they will simply pay out the judgement – and they may not even bother to defend.

I think we can't say anything more. You understand your position now. If you want to issue proceedings then we will help you but it is a decision for you to make



 


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Unfortunately, I dont have the serial number,

I have given them enough time to respond to my latest request to return my item to me but they haven't bothered to reply.

 

I will therefore need to go to the next stage which you say is to issue proceedings.  Do I need to go to  the county court to do this or can I do it through magistrates court?

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It's a county court matter. Read up about bringing a small claim in the County Court.

Don't forget that your problem here might be to enforce the judgement.


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I'm going to say right now that you might have better luck against PayPal.

When they said it was just a warranty issue, what do they mean? I thought there was a guarantee of sorts if you paid by PayPal? Can you find out please let us know the details


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That's what I thought as well. They said because the item had stopped working it should be covered by the warranty. PayPal do not deal with claims concerning warranties.

 

I looked this up in their guidance and it does state that. Unfortunately I seem to have got rid of the email they sent with their decision.

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It is unhelpful when important information is binned.

PayPal seem to be pretty clear that their guarantee only applies to items which are not as described. Of course we could push it and say that by implication the description includes an undertaking that the item is of satisfactory quality. However we might be getting a bit too complicated.

I suppose that the suppliers are the people to sue – but once again, you may have difficulty with enforcement


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Well I think your chances of winning are extremely high. You want to claim £250 – plus interest plus costs.

In order to do this you will have to lay out about £35 (needs checking) which you will get back if you win. If they push you to a hearing then you will have to lay out about another hundred pounds or so and if you win, you will get that back as well. An enforcement fee I think is about £60 so in order to bring this claim you might be looking at about £200. If you can enforce a judgement then you will get all of this back plus your £250 plus 8% interest – although this is only for a very short period so won't amount to very much.

You could just try issuing the claim and see if they respond – and if they don't then you could put in for a default judgement. In that case it would only cost you the claim fee – but you will still have to enforce it.
So if you want to summarise risk factors – risk of losing, very low. Risk of being unable to enforce – fairly high, in my opinion.
I'm afraid this company seems to be rather intangible. If you can actually locate where their assets are – their warehouse et cetera then you could reduce the non-enforcement risk.


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