If you pay for something can the vendor back out?

  Why wont it work 11:38 29 Oct 2008

Hello, it's me again- albeit not complaining as much as possible.

I bought something the other day online, payment cleared etc and left my bank account. A day later I got a note saying they couldn't sell it and a refund. Strange I thought, it was the same (motherboard) as it would be everywhere else and they had 20+ in stock.

The item had dissappeared from the website too by the time I got the message. However whilst I was looking around the website figuring out how to complain, I noticed that the item was for sale again (20+ in stock) but with a much higher price!

Can they do this? I'm pretty sure that they can, I think they have a right not to supply... but if they have what I want for sale it just doesn't seem right!

  Covergirl 12:32 29 Oct 2008

. . . at around the same price, or had they put the wrong price on it and realised (but not told you)?

Various other threads here on mispriced items and if you read up on "Invitation to Treat" you might find they don't HAVE TO sell at the price listed.
Some places do as a gesture of goodwill.

It would have been nice of them to say "Oh, we got the price wrong, sorry but we can't sell it to you at the price advertised"

  Why wont it work 12:48 29 Oct 2008

Yes, it was £20 or so cheaper than I had seen else where, but not cheap enough to send off alarm bells.

As you say, I wouldn't be annoyed had they just told the truth- that would have been fair enough. Anyone can make a mistake, I just don't appreciate being lied to for no good reason!

  natdoor 15:44 29 Oct 2008

Putting something on display for sale with a price is an invitation to treat. However, as I understand the situation, a contract is entered whenever there is a consideration, or acceptance of money. Since the money was accepted, being taken from you bank account, I feel that you have a right to demand the product at the price paid.

I'm sure I will be corrected if wrong.

  anchor 15:58 29 Oct 2008

Indeed; by accepting your money a contract was entered into.

However, if they dig their heels in it could take court action to enforce it.

  lofty29 16:56 29 Oct 2008

you could always write to the CE, have had sucess that way in the past

  spuds 18:59 29 Oct 2008

Invitation to treat is cancelled once the company have accepted your money. Did you receive a confirmation email for the purchased item?.

If the same item was displayed later, after they had refused to honour the deal, then have a word with your local trading standards or Consumer Direct click here

  laurie53 19:55 29 Oct 2008

As stated by others, once they took the money a legally enforceable contract existed.

  Why wont it work 20:12 29 Oct 2008

Well, I spoke to them this afternoon and they insisted that they had a right not to supply under the Sale of Goods Act, so i'll have to see about that. I have sent an email off to Consumer Direct to see what they say. I have a feeling though that they're not going to budge though, and I won't be able to do anything about it. Oh well, I shall continue with this and see where it gets me. It's just the principle of it really.

  ray7 20:42 29 Oct 2008

Ask them to advise you what section of the Sale of Goods Act they are applying. Assuming that they are not correct, advise them accordingly that you intend to take the matter to the small claims court. Chances are they will relent.

  interzone55 22:04 29 Oct 2008

Argos pull this stunt when they had a TV on their site for 49p, they processed the sales automatically, but then backed out once a human realised what was going on.

In the end Argos were clear of breach of contract because it was a genuine error and Argos have a disclaimer in their webshop T&Cs

"While we try and ensure that all prices on our Web site are accurate, errors may occur. If we discover an error in the price of goods you have ordered we will inform you as soon as possible and give you the option of reconfirming your order at the correct price or cancelling it. If we are unable to contact you we will treat the order as cancelled. If you cancel and you have already paid for the goods, you will receive a full refund."

click here

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