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Beyond the legal requirements surrounding returns and refunds in the UK, what are the common practices for offering a customer more than the minimum legal requirements?
As a general rule, you are only required to accept a return if the item is faulty, not as described, or unfit for its purpose.* However, it is common practice to offer a more extensive return, refund, or exchange policy. Most retailers offer their customers a policy that allows them to return non-faulty items with a few stipulations. Those stipulations vary depending on the retailer, but commonly require that the item be unused, in undamaged and original packaging, accompanied by a receipt, and be returned/exchanged within a specific amount of time. Some common items that most retailers will not accept returns and exchanges for are DVDs, CDs, computer software, perishables, and items made-to-order.
Most retailers will prominently display their return policy in store, on receipts, and their website. Keep in mind, if you do offer a more extensive return/refund policy, you are required to follow your policy.
* There are specific exceptions to this rule, including exceptions for online and phone purchases and for purchases of digital content. Those exceptions are explained in more detail in Globig’s Billing Regulations subsection of Product Localization in the UK Knowledge Base.