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When Am I Not Entitled to a Refund?

By: Sarah Clark (ILEX) - Updated: 11 Sep 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Refund Sale And Supply Of Goods Act

It seems that most people buy things in the expectation that they will be fully entitled to get their money back by way of a full refund if there are any problems, if the item isn’t suitable or they just change their mind. You would probably be surprised at how many common scenarios there are that you would expect entitle you to a refund...but in fact don’t.

The Sofa Won’t Fit in the House!

Oh dear. If you buy a sofa, a bed or anything else that needs to be a certain size to fit where you want it to go, the responsibility is on you to make sure that the item will fit through the door, or will go up the stairs. Or fit into the place in the kitchen where you wanted it to go, in the case of appliances like washing machines or dishwashers.

If the furniture doesn’t fit, you have a big problem and will have to do some serious negotiating with the retailer as the law doesn’t say that the goods you buy have to be fit for your purposes, just that they must be fit for the purpose which they are commonly intended – unless you specifically request something.

So, if you are told by a furniture retailer that a sofa is four feet long, and you have a space four and a bit feet long intended for it, you would be within your rights to complain if it didn’t fit because the sofa was longer than it had been described. But if you don’t measure the space and just assume that it will fit, you will have to fall on the mercy of the retailer and you may have to accept a credit note. By law, the retailer doesn’t even have to give you that, let alone a refund. The moral of the story is always, always measure up if size is crucial. The same applies to curtains, bed covers and carpets.

The Dress Doesn’t Fit Me!

When you buy clothes without trying them on, always check first whether the store has a policy that allows you an exchange or refund if you are not happy or change your mind. The Sale and Supply of Goods Act only entitles you to a refund or any kind of redress if the goods that you buy are ‘not of satisfactory quality’ and if there’s nothing wrong with the dress or shoes that you’ve bought – except that it doesn’t fit you – you are legally entitled to absolutely nothing. Most stores are lenient with their policies but it pays to check, as anything over and above your legal rights under the Sale and Supply of Goods Act is at the discretion of the shop.

It’s Gone Wrong and I’ve Only Had it Six Months!

The Sale and Supply of Goods Act does say that if an item is faulty, and it’s less than six months old, as a rule you should be entitled to compensation from the retailer as it’s judged to have been faulty when you purchased it.

The entitlement to compensation has to be reasonable though, so if you have bought something perishable, or something you wouldn’t usually expect to last for six months, you can’t rely on this. Even if you buy something that you would reasonably expect to last more than six months, and it goes wrong, a refund isn’t the obvious answer.

If the item becomes faulty very quickly, or has never worked, you would be fully justified in demanding a refund. But if you have had a television for five months before it develops a problem, you’ve had five months use from that set and can’t reasonably insist on your money back – although it never hurts to try for a refund first. In that scenario, you may have to accept a repair – or a replacement television if the set can’t be repaired.

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I bought a granite worktop from Wren Kitchens, they came and measured the kitchen to produce the template to make the worktops. They arranged delivery 3 times and failed to turn up. I had to pay someone to be at the house every time they rearranged delivery (sometimes they didn't even say they weren't coming). The worktops finally arrived and they were all the wrong size, had the wrong detail or something wasn't right, so they took the worktops away. I asked them to re-template, they said they were too busy with other orders. I gave them another chance on a weekend, they said no. I asked for a refund, they said no. They asked to come during the week, I said no as I had already spent enough to get to this point and they refused to refund me for this. I had to go elsewhere to finish my kitchen and Wren refuse to give me a refund because I cancelled the contract but I saw no way of them completing it when they kept saying no. Am I entitled to my money back? What should I do?
Help! - 11-Sep-18 @ 4:44 PM
Anna - Your Question:
I had 2 sofas delivered on the 18th July and the cushions on the back have gone lumpy and misshapen. The company came out to replace then and tried to put a cushion that was too big and a different shape into one of the covers. This has caused the zip to go wavy. On inspection the other cushion winners have homes in them. I have contacted Trading Standards and they have said I am entitled to a full refund but the company is still trying to wriggle out of it even though one if their staff told me that the cushions used were of poor quality and they no longer use that manufacturer for that reason. Will I get a refund?

Our Response:
You should get a refund. Put your complaint in writing and refer to the Consumer Rights Act 2015. Remember your contract is with the retailer not the manufacturer, so it's up to the retailer to refund.
ConsumerRightsExpert - 14-Aug-18 @ 3:14 PM
I had 2 sofas delivered on the 18th July and the cushions on the back have gone lumpy and misshapen. The company came out to replace then and tried to put a cushion that was too big and a different shape into one of the covers. This has caused the zip to go wavy. On inspection the other cushion winners have homes in them. I have contacted Trading Standards and they have said I am entitled to a full refund but the company is still trying to wriggle out of it even though one if their staff told me that the cushions used were of poor quality and they no longer use that manufacturer for that reason. Will I get a refund?
Anna - 2-Aug-18 @ 4:53 PM
Tumble dryerfaulty in first month 3 call outs... now 13 months old having same fault again... now out of warranty.... not happy with product...poor build quality... what next as now ball in.my court
Jacks - 2-Apr-18 @ 4:12 PM
Purchased a door mid August last yr. Had it fitted but found many faults. They ended up changing the complete door only to fibd furtherfaults. They say another one is in the process of being made for the 3rd time but never answer my calls or emails . Ad when I do manage to talk to themthey keep saying they will get back to me on the update but never do unless I keep ringing. Am I entitled to my money back? Get someone in with the moneyto replace it and get them to pick up there faulty door
Spike - 11-Mar-18 @ 7:59 PM
I put down a deposit for a prom dress and now I’m changing my mind. Do you think they will let me change the deposit to another dress ?
Jess - 19-Feb-18 @ 8:21 PM
Lady - Your Question:
I bought a secret diary 2/8/17 which was to be given as a Christmas present. It has now proven faulty, however the retailer says 90 days is the return policy for faulty goods , and Christmas returns policy only applies to goods bought November onwards , would this seem unfair as it had not been used until Christmas day. Many thanks.

Our Response:
Yes unfortunately your consumer rights do give you 30 to reject faulty goodsfor an immediate and full refund. Your rights do actually cover you for faulty goods up to 6 months after purchase but after 6 months the onus is on the buyer to prove the fault was there at the time of purchase. See our Guide here for more information
ConsumerRightsExpert - 16-Feb-18 @ 2:58 PM
I bought a secret diary 2/8/17 which was to be given as a Christmas present. It has now proven faulty, however the retailer says 90 days is the return policy for faulty goods , and Christmas returns policy only applies to goods bought November onwards , would this seem unfair as it had not been used until Christmas day. Many thanks.
Lady - 14-Feb-18 @ 4:58 PM
Spikes - Your Question:
I took my curtains for alterations. When they were rehung they were uneven at the finished hem and the centre curtains now look shabby. They were not cheap to buy and he has charged £50. I asked for a refund, he said bring them back he would put them right! How, when they made a mess in the first instance? Can I get a refund please.

Our Response:
You should give him a chance to rectify the issue before demanding a refund.
ConsumerRightsExpert - 26-Jan-18 @ 10:09 AM
I took my curtains for alterations.When they were rehung they were uneven at the finished hem and the centre curtains now look shabby.They were not cheap to buy and he has charged £50 .I asked for a refund, he said bring them back he would put them right!How, when they made a mess in the first instance?Can I get a refund please.
Spikes - 24-Jan-18 @ 8:54 AM
I purchased made to measure online blinds at the beginning of December - followed the measuring guide to the letter and asked for recess fitting which means the company shorten the measurements to fit (they ask for the exact measurements of the window) it took them till 20th to deliver (said 5 working days but gave them time due to xmas). when they arrived they have been made to the exact measurements (1mm over in one case) meaning they will not fit into the window recess and the vertical slats sit on the window sill making them useless.I've been back and forth with the company and they have collected the blinds and taken them back to investigate but now say that they were made correctly (they were not I've used other companies offering this service before) and that will alter the head rails by 1mm and return them - they said if I want the slats changing (they are over by at least 3mm) I will need to pay.From the information supplied to me (that they would reduce to fit - that we should not adjust the measurements in any way) surely they have not kept to their side of the contract of sale and should at the very least have to correct this???I cant afford to loose nearly £200 as these were for my first house and money is tight.
DivaGirl - 18-Jan-18 @ 2:06 PM
Richie- Your Question:
I have purchased a laminate floor online which was labelled as express click. My carpenter quoted me a price for this type of flooring. The flooring arrived and the carpenter came to start work. He then noticed the flooring was not express click and informed me he was unable to fit the floor alone due to the type and required an extra man to complete the job. I contacted the company and requested a refund. Having no response I instructed my carpenter to starts works agreeing to pay him extra for the additional labour required as I could clearly see he was unable to fit it himself. I then received a reply the following confirming the flooring had been incorrectly advertised and apologising and offering a refund. At this point it was too late so I requested a refund of the additional costs to me to have the floor fitted explaining the scenario. They refused and offered me the cost of two packs of flooring as a gesture of goodwill. Do I have any rights to persure this further. As I am out of pocket due to their incorrect advertising ?

Our Response:
It would have been better to call the company for a repsonse - how long did you wait? It's not clear from your comment.
ConsumerRightsExpert - 8-Dec-17 @ 3:26 PM
I have purchased a laminate floor online which was labelled as express click. My carpenter quoted me a price for this type of flooring. The flooring arrived and the carpenter came to start work. He then noticed the flooring was not express click and informed me he was unable to fit the floor alone due to the type and required an extra man to complete the job. I contacted the company and requested a refund. Having no response I instructed my carpenter to starts works agreeing to pay him extra for the additional labour required as I could clearly see he was unable to fit it himself. I then received a reply the following confirming the flooring had been incorrectly advertised and apologising and offering a refund. At this point it was too late so I requested a refund of the additional costs to me to have the floor fitted explaining the scenario. They refused and offered me the cost of two packs of flooring as a gesture of goodwill. Do i have any rights to persure this further. As I am out of pocket due to their incorrect advertising ?
Richie - 7-Dec-17 @ 9:45 PM
Elaine - Your Question:
I ordered made to measure bifold wardrobe doors. Once fitted they do not close and the edges are very sharp, with a very poor finish. Supplier has tried to alter fitting but agrees they are not fit for purpose. The manufacturer says it's a fitting issue and won't come out and see the doors. Stalemate- leaving me with poor quality, expensive, non closing doors! What can I do?

Our Response:
When you say the supplier has agreed they are not fit for purpose - is this who you paid for the doors? If so the contract is with them (they are the retailer) and must refund under Consumer legislation (they should then follow up with the manufacturer). If you bought them directly from the manufacturer and they are not fit for purpose or they are of unsatisfactory quality, the manufacturer should refund you. If they do not, refer it to trading standards - you may have to reclaim via the small claims court, but hopefully it will not go that far.
ConsumerRightsExpert - 8-Nov-17 @ 11:22 AM
I ordered made to measure bifold wardrobe doors. Once fitted they do not close and the edges are very sharp, with a very poor finish. Supplier has tried to alter fitting but agrees they are not fit for purpose. The manufacturer says it's a fitting issue and won't come out and see the doors. Stalemate- leaving me with poor quality, expensive, non closing doors! What can I do?
Elaine - 1-Nov-17 @ 10:14 PM
With reference to my previous comment, no it was not made to measure. The website offers items made to order in set sizes (9-12m, 12-18m etc). I ordered 12-18m as this is the size I order from other made to order websites and high street stores. The items from this website are at least 3cm shorter than clothes from other retailers.
Unhappy - 20-Oct-17 @ 2:25 PM
Unhappy - Your Question:
On 1st September I ordered some handmade clothes for my baby. They arrived on 19th October (website states 4-6 week turnaround). They are way too small. I ordered 12-18m. In comparison with various other brands of clothes they are very small, more like 6-9m. The company won't offer an exchange or refund. I would argue that the clothes are not as described, as they are not anywhere near to being the average 12-18m sizing. Am I entitled to an exchange or refund? Thanks

Our Response:
When you say they were handmade, were they "made to measure " for your baby? In which case, did the retailer take measurements etc?
ConsumerRightsExpert - 20-Oct-17 @ 2:22 PM
On 1st September I ordered some handmade clothes for my baby. They arrived on 19th October (website states 4-6 week turnaround). They are way too small. I ordered 12-18m. In comparison with various other brands of clothes they are very small, more like 6-9m. The company won't offer an exchange or refund. I would argue that the clothes are not as described, as they are not anywhere near to being the average 12-18m sizing. Am I entitled to an exchange or refund? Thanks
Unhappy - 20-Oct-17 @ 12:46 PM
Rs - Your Question:
I recently made a hair appointment which requires a £40 deposit to secure.The appointment was made on Thursday and I was due to attend on Sunday at 9am. I received a text from the stylist at 11pm on Saturday evening saying that she would need to push the appointment back to 1pm on Sunday. I replied and said that this was not possible because I was travelling on Sunday evening to attend a wedding abroad and this was the reason why I booked the earliest slot available. I then requested a refund of my deposit. I was then told that I would not be able to get a refund due to the fact that she had already purchased the hair extensions required.i explained again that incouod not attend and that the cancellation was no fault of mine I also mentioned that she gave less than 24 hours notice etc.how do I go about getting my money back as she is no longer responding

Our Response:
If she will not refund you, you may need to consider the small claims court. Hopefully the threat of doing so, will compel the stylish to refund you.
ConsumerRightsExpert - 9-Oct-17 @ 12:47 PM
I recently made a hair appointment which requires a £40 deposit to secure. The appointment was made on Thursday and I was due to attend on Sunday at 9am. I received a text from the stylist at 11pm on Saturday evening saying that she would need to push the appointment back to 1pm on Sunday. I replied and said that this was not possible because I was travelling on Sunday evening to attend a wedding abroad and this was the reason why I booked the earliest slot available. I then requested a refund of my deposit. I was then told that I would not be able to get a refund due to the fact that she had already purchased the hair extensions required.i explained again that incouod not attend and that the cancellation was no fault of mine I also mentioned that she gave less than 24 hours notice etc...how do I go about getting my money back as she is no longer responding
Rs - 8-Oct-17 @ 1:43 AM
We had a composite front door fitted 2 months ago for a lovely £1500. The company had to come out a month ago to re-sit the door as it was catching at the top. They also replaced the chrome handle which has started to Pitt. They are due back agin on Friday as the screws holding the house number in place have all gone rusty! And tonight is the final straw....its raining and water is coming into our hall way via the doors windows. It is going to ruin the hall flooring. I will be phoning the company first thing in the morning. Am I entitled to a refund,compensation, can I get them to pay for new flooring etc. I have taken photos and videos as evidence. Thank you
Colin - 4-Oct-17 @ 11:00 PM
Disappointed - Your Question:
I recently bought a fitted kitchen supply only from an independent supplier, As I started to fit the the units it became quickly apparent that there were problems, chipped laminate edges, scuffs, black marks, holes. I contacted them and they came out,Firstly said that some of the damage would not be seen when fitted, but agreed to take it back and remake. 2 weeks later it came back with some panels replaced but the black mark had just been sanded out making the finish shiny and some chips just filled and the edges are still chipping. I am so disappointed as this was a big investment. What I wanted to know is, I have started cutting the units to fit pipe work etc would I still be able to say the quality of the goods and workmanship are not up to standard and return the lot and get a refund.

Our Response:
If the faults have only become apparent after you started fitting them, you should still be able to get a refund.
ConsumerRightsExpert - 25-Sep-17 @ 12:31 PM
I recently bought a fitted kitchen supply only from an independent supplier, As I started to fit the the units it became quickly apparent that there were problems, chipped laminate edges, scuffs, black marks, holes . I contacted them and they came out,Firstly said that some of the damage would not be seen when fitted, but agreed to take it back and remake. 2 weeks later it came back with some panels replacedbut the black mark had just been sanded out making the finish shiny and some chips just filled and the edges are still chipping. I am so disappointed as this was a big investment. What I wanted to know is, I have started cutting the units to fit pipe work etc would I still be able to say the quality of the goods and workmanship are not up to standard and return the lot and get a refund.
Disappointed - 22-Sep-17 @ 9:36 AM
We recentlyvisited a wedding dress shop for my daughters wedding. She had seen a very specific blue dress.When we asked for this dress we were told that that designer did not produce the dress to her size. We were dissapointed so the retailer told us she would tryand source asimilar dress elsewhere. At the same my wife tried on a dress ,liked it and ordered it in the colour Blue. When my wife's dress arrived we were informed that a blue wedding dress in my daughters size had been found. . my daughter tried this dress on liked it as did my wife hers . however it was not identical to her original choice. We were told this could not be achieved as it may infringe design copyright if supplied by another manufacturer. We asked for alterations to be made to make it closer to original choice. This was agreed but we were told we must pay for dress prior to alteration.We paid for both dresses and my wife took hers home. Four weeks later we returned for a first fitting but did not feel right about the alterationwe asked for all money back . we were told this was only a first post alteration fitting and that details were still to be added after this sizing was confirmed. At same time we happens to have my mothers dress in car and as we may have to change our colour scheme demanded a refund on that too.We have no problem with quality of this dress but colour would be wrong.Can I take legal action please.
Pd - 24-Aug-17 @ 10:41 AM
I recently purchased a wedding dress for my daughter from a bridal shop. She loved the sample she tried and decided that was the dress she wanted. However when they asked for a deposit they told her they would order a size 20 (the sample was size 12 or 14). As you can imagine she wasn't very happy, however they said they knew what they were doing so she went ahead. Once the dress was ordered and available to try on she didn't feel it look right because the bodice appeared much bigger. Again she was told it would be taken in. She tried it again last week but still felt unhappy, Its only now that I paid in full (nearly £1000) that she doesn't want it because of the size and it just doesn't look as it did when she tired the sample. Shes lost weight but the shop knew this was her plan and maybe should not have ordered such a large size. I wouldn't be surprised if this is a shop tactic to make money on adjustments.She's so upset because they said that they will not refund or change it. I am even more unhappy because I wanted to buy my daughters dress for symbolic/emotional reasons and now I have no money and the wedding is at the end of August. Where do we stand legally if we want to get a refund? bear in mind the dress has not been altered and is still in the condition as ordered. Many Thanks
juliette - 6-Jul-17 @ 9:54 PM
I went to an expensive bridal shop to buy my daughter a prom dress, we found one but it didnt fit right so she got measured, was told an extra inch was left so she could sit and eat comfortably, we went to collect dress when it arrived but it was way too small, she could hardly breath in it, they measured her again and said the measurements were exactly the same as the first time, we have got a seamstress coming in 3 days to have a look, im not sure there will be enough material in the dress to even alter, her prom is in 2 weeks! Where will I stand if the dress wont be able to be altered?
Sue - 9-Jun-17 @ 2:24 PM
Debbie - Your Question:
I bought a sofa from charity shop but when it arrived it wouldnt fit through the door. The delivery drivers have left it on my drive. What are my rights as been told I will not get a refund.

Our Response:
While a charity shop still has to comply with the consumer legislation, you as the buyer have a responsibility to check obvious things like size at the time of purchase. The retailer will not have to refund you.
ConsumerRightsExpert - 23-May-17 @ 12:21 PM
I bought a sofa from charity shop but when it arrived it wouldnt fit through the door. The delivery drivers have left it on my drive. What are my rights as been told i will not get a refund.
Debbie - 22-May-17 @ 2:56 PM
Dee - Your Question:
I bought a display cabinet, it looks big and bulky in my room, it also has an electrical fault on one of the interior lights. It was in the sale and I asked if I could exchange it for something smaller and was to!d no. Thank you

Our Response:
If the item was faulty the retailer should have replaced/refunded within 30 days (if you made your complaint in time). After 30 days but up to 6 mothns you can ask to have faults repaired or a replacement. If there is nothing wrong with an item that you bought in a shop you can't always take it back, you must check the retailer's policy on this. If you buy an item online from a business/retailer you have 14 days to inform the retailer that you want to return it and a further 14 days to actually return the item.
ConsumerRightsExpert - 10-May-17 @ 2:13 PM
I bought a display cabinet, it looks big and bulky in my room, it also has an electrical fault on one of the interior lights. It was in the sale and I asked if I could exchange it for something smaller and was to!d no. Thank you
Dee - 9-May-17 @ 7:55 PM
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