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Retailer refused to sell me a product unless I bought a secondary item.

Discussion in 'Consumer Law, Contracts, Warranties' started by Pleas&carrots, Jan 27, 2021.

  1. Pleas&carrots

    Pleas&carrots Law Topic Starter New Member

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    I tried to purchase a phone from a retailer, but they refused to sell me the item unless I opened a contract with them.

    There was a sign in the store stating phones may be purchased for full retail price (which I understood and had zero issue with). I pointed out the sign to them, but they refused to budge.

    For the record, I ended up going to the same store but a different location and had no issue. I explained what happened at that store, and the employee apologized on their behalf, and said that's common when employees are trying to hit their numbers for commission.

    The problem is solved, but I feel like this is absolutely against the law and would like to arm myself with whichever law or statute it's violating, if any, should this happen in the future.
     
  2. Tax Counsel

    Tax Counsel Well-Known Member

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    It's not against the law in most cases to bundle products and services and require them to be bought as a package. The main exceptions to that are found not in consumer law but anti-trust law: monopolists that use bundling to maintain their monopoly status and decrease competition may face action from the government.

    What can be a problem for a business under consumer laws is advertising that you can buy a product for a certain price but not disclosing in the ad that to get that price you have to buy additional products/services along with it. The sign in the store isn't an ad so that would not have applied here, but it's worth mentioning for the future.
     
    Pleas&carrots likes this.
  3. Pleas&carrots

    Pleas&carrots Law Topic Starter New Member

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    The internet ad did show a lower price if you opened a contract, but also stated the phone could be purchased without contract for the full retail price.

    I didn't think to pull up the website because I had never encountered a situation where I was denied buying something at full price.

    Thank you so much for responding regardless.
     
  4. mightymoose

    mightymoose Moderator

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    It seems that here you have less of a false advertising issue and more of an uninformed or incompetent employee issue.
    Since you have already resolved this I suggest you make a formal complaint to the company through whatever feedback mechanism they have and leave it at that.
     
    Zigner likes this.
  5. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    Good. You did what any smart shopper would do. You took your business elsewhere. That's your best recourse. Apparently nothing illegal happened. You're free to write to the business owner as to why you took your business elsewhere.
     
    Michael Wechsler likes this.
  6. zddoodah

    zddoodah Well-Known Member

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    Huh?

    I think what you meant to write was that you believe it should be against the law (for whatever reason). Correct?

    What do you suppose that would accomplish? Let's say you're in a store two years from now and you whip out a copy of Code Section Blahbedy Blah. Do you really think that's going to get you somewhere with some kid making minimum wage at a retail store?

    And that's what you should do if this ever happens in the future.
     

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