That un­wanted gift...

Manawatu Guardian - - FROM THE BEEHIVE -

While many of us will hope­fully re­ceive ev­ery­thing on their wish list for Christ­mas, it is likely there will be at least one present you can live without. A shop does not have to give you a re­fund if you:

• De­cide you don’t want the goods.

• Find the same thing cheaper else­where.

• Bought some­thing for some­one else that they don’t like or al­ready have.

• Bought clothes that don’t fit or some­thing that doesn’t match what you al­ready have.

Many re­tail­ers are will­ing to give the buyer an ex­change card at the time of pur­chase, which can be used if the per­son re­ceiv­ing the gift would rather ex­change it for some­thing else at the shop. Be­fore you buy some­thing you are un­sure about, ask whether the shop has a ‘change of mind’ re­turns pol­icy. This usu­ally says:

• You have a lim­ited time to re­turn the goods.

• Goods can be ex­changed for other goods or a credit note. • Proof of pur­chase is re­quired.

How­ever, if the gift is faulty or not of ac­cept­able qual­ity the Con­sumer Guar­an­tees Act gives you cer­tain rights. You have the right to take the goods back to the shop and they are re­quired to put the prob­lem right. If the goods can be re­paired in a rea­son­able time, you must al­low the trader a chance to re­pair. They may choose to re­fund or of­fer re­place­ment goods. If they will not or can­not fix the prob­lem, then you can in­sist on a re­fund of your money. You may need to pro­vide proof that the goods were bought at that shop if the goods were a gift. It is not re­quired by law that you have a re­ceipt — any proof will do, such as an Eftpos or bank state­ment that iden­ti­fies what was pur­chased.

For free and con­fi­den­tial ad­vice and in­for­ma­tion visit Palmer­ston North Cit­i­zens Ad­vice Bu­reau, Han­cock Com­mu­nity House, 77 King St. Mon-Fri from 9 am-4.30 pm, call 357-0647 or 0800 367 222. We have a free le­gal ad­vice ser­vice by qual­i­fied lawyers most Thurs­day evenings at 7.30 pm, and a JP is avail­able on Tues­days from noon to 2.30pm. No ap­point­ment is nec­es­sary.

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