Overpayment Scams

Dear Consumer Ed:  I posted an item for sale online and received an email from an interested buyer, saying he wanted to send me a certified check. He said the check will cover the cost of the item plus the expense incurred by the person who will pick up the item on his behalf. I am being asked to deposit the check and then wire a portion to the person picking up the item. Do you think this is a scam?

Store lost my chainsaw I dropped off for repairs

Dear Consumer Ed:  I brought a chainsaw to a store for service. When I went back to pick it up, the store told me it had been lost or stolen. The owner offered to give me another used saw or a discount on a new saw. I am concerned that if I get another used saw, it may not be in the same condition as mine. I think the owner owes me my saw or a new one. What is the owner legally obligated to do?

Camp cancelled but won't refund deposit

Dear Consumer Ed: I put a deposit down on summer camp for my kids six months ago. Now camp has been cancelled for health and safety reasons due to COVID-19, but they won’t give me a refund. What do I do?

Is there a legal limit on restocking fees?

Dear Consumer Ed:  Is there a legal limit on restocking fees?

Furniture store refusing to give refund

Dear Consumer Ed:  I purchased a leather loveseat from a furniture store. Within the first week the leather started to fade. When I reported the problem to them, they said I could exchange it or get a store credit. I don’t want to buy any furniture from them because the quality of their products seems to be poor. I just want my money back.  Can they refuse to refund my money?

Jeweler charging customer for damage it caused

Dear Consumer Ed:  I recently took my fiancée’s engagement ring to a jeweler to get it re-sized.  A week later I got a call from the jeweler saying that one of the diamond baguettes had broken, and that I would need to pay $480 in cash to get the ring back. What can I do to make the jeweler fix the damage they caused?

Don't I have 3 days to cancel a sales contract?

Dear Consumer Ed:  We were recently talked into purchasing some expensive cookware following a very persuasive demonstration at a neighbor’s house.  We put a significant amount of money down and signed a contract to pay the rest. As soon as the cookware arrived, I realized I had made a mistake.

Can a merchant charge a restocking fee if merchandise was defective?

Dear Consumer Ed:  I bought a fender for a 1969 Chevelle from a parts store. I got the correct part, but it is defective and won’t line up correctly with the side of the car.  When I went to return the part, the parts company charged me a restocking fee.

Can grocery stores sell meat if package's vacuum seal is broken?

Dear Consumer Ed:  Can grocery stores sell meat in vacuum-sealed plastic packages if the seal is broken?  I’ve noticed several big name stores that will offer manager’s specials for such products, but I thought it was illegal to sell them if the vacuum seal is broken.

Cable company won't provide price breakdown

Dear Consumer Ed:  I am having difficulty getting a price list for all services and fees from my cable company. When I ask for this information they just try to sell me packages that include phone service I don’t want and equipment I don’t need.