Bait and switch

Started 7 months ago | Discussions thread
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Re: Bait and switch
In reply to Pontoneer, 7 months ago

Pontoneer wrote:

Jaberwok wrote:

Pontoneer wrote:

gazis wrote:

Thanks Derek,

This is clear: if a charge exists, then value has changed ownership and this must be reflected on both participants. Hence the retailer would be legally obliged to either deliver the item, or, refund in full.

However, what if the item's price has not been charged to the consumer but the later is provided with information that the order was accepted? Assuming the item is in stock, would that stand as ground for the retailer to be obliged to provide the item at the price quoted in the order?

Cheers,

Vangelis

I am no lawyer but I think that situation is less clear .

If something is offered for sale at a certain price , and a customer tries to pay , then is told that price is incorrect , there is provision ( in UK law at least ) for a genuine error and the retailer can point out that it was a mistake and are not obliged to sell .

Having said that , most genuine retailers will honour prices quoted in error ( unless the quoted price is way under the true value - for example a decimal point in the wrong place ) . If it actually gets so far that payment is accepted and a receipt issued then the deal is binding . It may be possible , where it is clear that a mistake was made , for the seller to refund in full and point this out , but there have been cases of large companies honouring items wrongly sold for a fraction of the correct prices before errors were spotted .

In both cases , it is unlikely that a court would take action if it can be shown that the customer suffered no loss ( other than being denied something at a bargain price ) .

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With kind regards
Derek.

You're pretty well correct however a dispute can arise if, for example. I walk into a store and ask them to specifically order an item: 'I like that sofa but not in red, order me one in green' No money has changed hands but a signed order would commit you to the offered price and a commitment to pay. In theory a verbal agreement would do the same but very hard to enforce.

In this case the court would take the view that the retailer had taken a loss by ordering in a special item at the customer request and had suffered financial loss.

This is diverting from the thread. Consumer law is extremely complex. I did it for 3 years and it's a minefield.

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The degree of technical knowledge of the fanboi owner is inversely proportional to the size of his ego.

Agreed , a loss can be on either side , the case you quoted being a good example .

However , I doubt that many retailers these days would place a special order for something they would not normally stock , or expect to sell easily , without at least taking a deposit or even full payment up front .

I worked in retail ( ran a hi-fi shop ) for a number of years , and we would never order in expensive non-stock and non-returnable items without a substantial deposit ( which could be anywhere from 10% to 50% depending on what the item was and whether or not the customer was known to us ) .

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With kind regards
Derek.

I was quoting an extreme and unlikely scenario just as an example to make a point. If the retailer takes a deposit then the contract is made and the customer has no defence to the claim if he doesn't pay. The only recourse could possibly be if the good weren't as agreed when we are back to a liability on the retailer to fulfil his contract.

We could play tennis with this all day as it's complex law!

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The degree of technical knowledge of the fanboi owner is inversely proportional to the size of his ego.

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