User-3260B6E0-D40E-464F-B62478D4E17479D3 01:08 23 Apr 2003

Having had a bad and very ongoing experience with the questionable practices of Savastore and read of plenty of other people who have had to make numerous and time-consuming efforts to write to various online retailers seeking goods that have not been delivered or money that has not been repaid, perhaps it would be a good idea to charge such retailers for writing to them.

After all, banks and others charge you for writing to tell you that you are overdrawn etc and they are going to charge you for that too. And the bank isn't even the customer! Surely then, a customer is entitled to charge a retailer when the retailer is in the cusomer's debt.

Indeed, my Visa get away with charging me interest on a transaction that should never have gone through because the order was cancelled and they claim they can't do anything about it. So much for credit card security and anti-fraud warnings!

There are many comments on the web and this discussion forum relating to companies that just ride roughshod over everyone because they think they can get away with it, that people will just fold because "it's not worth the hassle". And people do! So the companies keep getting away with it! It's just not right!

If you are getting messed about by a retailer who thinks his online status means he can do as he likes, don't just let him away with it in the hope that it won't happen again. You owe it to yourself and to others to hammer bad practices. As Winston Churchill said: "an appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping that it will eat him last".

Don't stand for advertising that can not be delivered, pledges that are broken, goods that are not fit for the purpose, service that makes you feel as if you are having to be unreasonably inconvenienced, money taken without good reason or any reason, and money not paid back within a short timescale.

The thing is you CAN charge a reasonable amount for the time it has taken you and the costs invilved in solving a dispute - IF you have a situation where the comapny is liable in a claim against them.

It works like this -

You have a contract when you purchase goods from a retailer, if that contract is broken, then they are in breach and your claim is for your losses including costs incurred to put the matter right. The costs must be reasonable and a jusge would soon throw out any "£30 per letter = £120" claims unless hte letters were actually written by a solicitor or similar.

The situation with the banks is different. You have a contract with them and that contract states that they may charge you "X" amount when you go overdrawn etc. Therefore, you have agreed to pay this sum when you do.

Try getting an online retailer to agree to pay you £30 every time you write to him during a complaint and it would stand up in court - I dont think many retialers would agree though.....

  N24 09:37 23 Apr 2003

Yes, I know about breach of contract but in my case I cancelled the order before the order was even in stock, let alone dispatched. Savastore's website states there is no contract in place until goods have been dispatched. So, to me, there was no contract: the offer was withdrawn by me before Savastore accepted it by the dispatch of the monitor.

Despite the lack of a contract Savastore went ahead and charged my credit card. They have held onto my money for two months.

They were totally unwilling to make any arrangements to get the monitor back at my convenience (bearing in mind that they were at fault) on a weekend. They even got a chance to uplift the monitor on a weekday but they failed to honour the arrangement.

Given that I am entitled to charge a reasonable amount for the time taken to resolve a dispute and that it takes time to compose letters, it would seem perfectly logical to recover this by attaching a charge to letters. I thought £15 per letter was reasonable- it is certainly a lot cheaper than a lawyer's letter. I would have thought that reasonable costs for this would be a reasonable time taken to write the letter multiplied by a reasonable cost per hour.

  Muzziad 11:10 23 Apr 2003

i'm not sure about this, but can't you notify them that you will charge them a 'daily storage rate' until they do collect the monitor, as you are storing their goods?

that would probably make them pick it up pretty swiftly.

  N24 12:53 23 Apr 2003

I don't know about charging them for storage either but I am charging them anyway and I warned them of this in a recorded delivery letter. That covered four weeks until I decided to send the monitor back and pursue them for the cost.

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