Is it legal for a company to refuse a request that is not mentioned on their terms and conditions?

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Is it legal for a company to refuse a request that is not mentioned on their terms and conditions?

I purchased a product about 3 months ago, but I never used it. I contacted the company to see if I could refund or exchange the product. I was told that since it was after 30 days I could not be refunded nor could the product be exchanged as stated in their terms and conditions. However, in their terms and conditions, it mentions nothing about exchanges and the 30 day deadline was specified to certain products, but did not mention the product that I purchased. Essentially, I would like to know if it is not in their terms and conditions, could I still pursue a refund or exchange of my product?

Asked on November 22, 2010 under General Practice, Florida

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, you're looking at it backwards: it's not the case that a company has to provide a refund or an exchange unless it specifically provides otherwise in its terms and conditions. Rather, it's that sales of goods (assuming you got the correct object and it was in working order) are final except and only to the extent that the seller has chosen to allow or provide for refunds and exchanges. No seller  is required to have a refund or exchange policy at all, or to accept returns of conforming goods. So in a case like this, if they do have a refund or exchange policy that would take in the item you bought, they'd have to honor it--it's a contract. But if they don't have a policy that would allow the refund or exchange, they don't have to provide it. The answer can be found in the terms and conditions of sale--as a contract, they have to do what they promised to do, no more and no less.


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