Most people have experienced the sinking feeling of receiving a gift and wanting to either hand it straight back or re-wrap and palm it off to someone else.
But those looking to swap an item for something else or return it so they can cash in should keep in mind that when it comes to returns – the customer isn’t always right.
Taking something back to the store it was bought simply because you didn’t like it doesn’t necessarily make you eligible for a refund, return or exchange, the ACCC states.
The ACCC warns consumers to be aware of the rules determining when they can and can’t return their unwanted Christmas presents
But the consumer protection body has outlined situations where unimpressed ‘giftees’ could eventually end up sufficiently satisfied.
It comes down to whether an issue with the present is considered ‘major’ or ‘minor’ – as everything is covered by a consumer guarantee.
The rule entitles consumers to return an item if it doesn’t function in its intended manner; but doesn’t apply to a change of mind, finding a cheaper alternative or if the product is no longer needed.
Therefore those who find themselves in possession of dodgey Christmas gifts will need to familiarise themselves with the rules if they intend on making any returns.
Those looking to swap an item for something else or return it so they can cash in should keep in mind that when it comes to returns, the customer isn’t always right
The ACCC states minor problems should be amended with a free repair, whereas consumers can ask for a return, refund or exchange if a product is deemed faulty.
Guidelines say consumers ‘must accept a free repair if the business offers one,’ but when opting for more significant reimbursement, it’s important to keep in mind the amount of time transpired since the purchase of the gift.
If an item is unsafe or has an issue that would have stopped someone from buying it if they’d known about it – the consumer is can request a return or refund.
They’re also within their rights if the product is significantly different from the sample or description, or if it doesn’t do what the business said it would.
Under the ACCC’s rules, a product does not need to be returned in its original packaging for the consumer to receive a refund.
The ACCC has outlined situations where unimpressed ‘giftees’ could eventually end up sufficiently satisfied – but there needs to be something wrong with the item
The manufacturer is responsible for transportation costs of problem presents, but consumers will need to foot the bill if the item is deemed non-faulty.
Shoppers might also be surprised to learn that businesses advertising ‘no refunds’ on particular items are actually breaking the law by doing so.
‘It is against the law for businesses to tell you or show signs stating that they do not give refunds under any circumstances, including for gifts and during sales,’ the ACCC states.
‘Your rights under the consumer guarantees do not have a specific expiry date and can apply even after any warranties you’ve got from a business have expired.’
Shoppers might also be surprised to learn that businesses advertising ‘no refunds’ on particular items are actually breaking the law by doing so