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You cannot return inferior not fit for purpose underwear. Why?

(6 Posts)
JaneAHersey Sat 27-Dec-14 12:24:48

Every time I buy underwear from a large store I am told that they are non returnable. Last year I bought two pair of pants costing £26.00 when I washed them they both lost most of their stitching and I threw them away because I had been told they were non returnable.

Recently I heard a comment on a radio programme from a Trading Standards officer stating that the no returns policy for pants is company policy only, not statutory rights and the latter negates the former.

Why are stores allowed to get away with this? The other point I really dislike is when I challenge the no returns policy in store the response is always that we don't want people's dirty underwear to be returned. I don't believe people do this and find it insulting that it is even suggested. But it does seem to be a stock response in all the stores I use.

AuditAngel Sat 27-Dec-14 12:28:42

If I considered underwear, even once worn then washed was unfit for purpose. I would return it quoting sale of goods act, then state that if they had a problem with disposing of the "hazardous" item, I would dispose of it on their behalf free of charge. If an item is unfit, then they do not have a right not to refund.

Stand your ground.

AMumInScotland Sat 27-Dec-14 12:35:58

I would assume they mean 'not part of our generous returns policy' rather than 'not subject to your normal legal rights'. So, you can't return them because you've changed your mind, or bought the wrong size, like some shops would do for most purchases, and that's what they ought to be warning you at the till.

They can't take away your normal legal rights to things being 'of merchantable quality' and 'fit for purpose', so return them if they are just plain useless.

Theenduringmoment Sat 27-Dec-14 12:37:49

You and/or the shop assistants have misunderstood the policy.

As a courtesy gesture/to increase sales most shops will let you return clothes in a saleable condition if you change your mind in a short period of time. For obvious reasons this does not include knickers (though it may include bikini bottoms with the plastic gusset protector still in place). This is entirely up to them, and they can set whatever rules they like.

The rules about refunds on faulty/not fit for purpose goods however are entirely seperate and laid down by law. They are the same for every shop and every type of product, and cannot be amended by the general policy on refunds (in fact you'll see the disclaimer "this does not affect your statutory rights" at the bottom of most refund policy notices).

The problem lies where a) you have an ignorant shop assistant who can't get past "it's policy not to allow refunds on pants" or b) they suspect that you may have deliberately sabotaged the goods because you changed your mind or shoplifted them in the first place. Polite assertiveness and a mention of the relevant legislation is normally the answer.

wonkylegs Sat 27-Dec-14 12:40:58

You can always return 'faulty goods' however the ability to return goods because you don't like it / change your mind/ have two etc is at the retailers discretion.
The problem is that retailers don't usually differentiate between the two and just have the stock phrase does not affect your statutory rights tacked on to their returns policy. Your statutory rights are the rights to return faulty goods, not all shop assistants are aware of this and try to fob you off.
The underwear issue is because they can't resell used underwear but as they can't resell it anyway if it's faulty this argument doesn't hold water.

BertieBotts Sat 27-Dec-14 12:50:42

The others are right. It's a totally different thing to return something as unwanted than returning something as faulty.

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