If you receive faulty goods, under your normal statutory rights even if you have signed an acceptance note, it does not mean that you cannot reject them. Please note that allowing the seller to "fix faulty goods" does not affect your rights. If the fixing or repair fails, you still maintain the perogative to reject the goods (unless in their faulty state they have eaten up the repairman or something like that.) If merchandise is faulty, you should not be charged anything, including the cost of returning the goods. If you are buying a service, it should be carried out with reasonable care and skill and within a reasonable period of time, particularly if you have not agreed upon a completion date.
Shopping from home gives the consumer the right to clear information before placing an order, documentation about a purchase, a "cooling off" period during which an order can be cancelled without explanation and a full refund made, a full refunding of goods and services if they are not provided by an agreed upon date or within 30 days of placing the order and protection against credit card fraud. These rights only apply to goods and services bought from traders who are organized to sell without face to face contact. They do not apply to financial services like insurance or banking, auctions, vending machine purchases and contracts involving the sale of land. These rights, particularly the right to cancel, do not apply to unsealed audio or video tapes, unsealed computer software, lottery or betting services, newspapers and magazines, time share and holiday packages, transport, catering, hotel bookings or concert tickets which are arranged for a specific time or date.
To cancel an order online, you must notify the seller in writing, either by letter, fax or e-mail. If you have already paid for the goods and/or services, the seller must refund your money within 30 days of the cancellation agreement. You are entitled to reject any merchandise and get your money back if such merchandise is faulty, does not match how it was described or is different in any way from that which you ordered. If it takes a while before you notice a problem, you might only be entitled to claim compensation. This could involve the cost of repair or the cost of returning the goods for a free repair. Check whether a guarantee covers the product and remember that they may add to ones legal rights, but they do not replace them.
All in all, shopping online with credit cards presents no more or less risk than shopping anywhere else. Still, the beat does go on and there are many online scams that shoppers may encounter along the vast frontier of the unpatrolled Internet. Look out for hidden addresses. Traders who attempt to sell goods or services using an anonymous e-mail address or a post office box number and make it difficult to pinpoint their location are up to "no good goods."
Beware of capital letters shouting at you across the screen. HOW TO MAKE A MILLION OVERNIGHT just might cause you to lose that same amount within the same time period. Vague testimonials rarely ring true. "Thousands of satisfied customers" doesnt say a word about who they are and how you as a potential one can check them out. Words like "this is not a scam" should remind one of the phrase about "methinketh thee protests too much." A legitimate business shouldnt need to convince you of its legitimacy.
As far as promises of instant wealth are concerned, if they sound too good to be true, they probably are. Some scams will offer a "secret" moneymaking scheme available only "to a select number of people." Details are not revealed until after a fee is paid. The same goes for hidden expenses. Be wary of advertisements promising no start-up costs and then asking for a "one time fee". Avoid chain letters, moneymaking clubs, mailing lists, home working schemes, prize draws and lotteries, miracle health and beauty products and business propositions from abroad.
Dont order impulsively. Think about what you want to buy for a day or so. Do your homework about whom you are purchasing from and all will end well for he or she who shops well.
Good luck, happy trails and much rewarding shopping online to all of you in the coming year!
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