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Retailers may be breaking the law by failing to refund delivery costs

Online retailers could be breaking the law in failing to refund delivery costs for returned orders.

Research carried out by the Daily Mail found that retailers that hold on to packaging fees may be breaking the Consumer Contracts Regulations, which were introduced in 2014, and state that retailers should provide a refund both for their goods and for delivery charges. While some retailers automatically refund these charges, others do not do so unless asked.

Asos, Boohoo and Topshop were among the retailers who were found to only refund delivery charges on request.

Online returns are soaring, with KPMG estimating that four in ten items of clothing bought online are returned. Solicitor Carys Murphy from law firm slater and Gordon estimates £4.1bn in postage costs may be owed to consumers ”The onus should be on online retailers to refund the original delivery charge once they are in receipt of the returned goods.

“Forcing a customer to fill in a separate form or make a call in order to get payment is not reflected in the regulations or in government guidance. Quite frankly, this appears to be an attempt by online retailers to justify avoiding paying consumers money they are entitled to.”

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Readers' comments (1)

  • a tricky and highly contentious area. If the return is for a does not suit then the retailer should not be liable, and if they were in law, then should it not follow that the liability should also fall to cover costs of returning to a store - petrol costs, transport costs, parking costs?

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