Eclipse Computers- Law Breakers

  davidcrash 22:34 03 Apr 2003

I've got a bit of a problem with eclipse.

I ordered a Sapphire Radeon 9000Pro graphics card from them. They supplied me with the plain 9000 card instead and said it was a mistake on their website.

They say all they will offer me is a refund but I am left out of pocket because if I hadn't seen their offer I would have opted for cheaper on board graphics on my motherboard which I purchased at the same time from a different company.

I kept all the original documents, they all say 9000Pro on them. Eclipse are refusing to supply the card and are also saying they don't stock them. I e-mailed them originally 2 weeks ago and had several exchanges with them but have made no head way.

I think that they are bound by law to give me the card but am not completely sure, so I would like some advice on what to do next?

  mikef™ 22:42 03 Apr 2003

If you do a search you'll see that many other people have had problems with them, I think your best bet would be to contact your local trading standards office as this company does not have a good reputation for customer service.

  Belatucadrus 23:09 03 Apr 2003

click here for the Office of fair trading.

  bfoc 23:23 03 Apr 2003

That the law is fairly clear:

If you and they had a contract that they would supply a particular item for a particular price and if you paid and they accepted that price they are obliged to provide you with the contracted item at the contracted price or be in breach of the contract. If they were to be in breach of the contract, you could claim not just a refund but also any directly consequential damages.

So what does that mean for you?

If they took money from you, by your credit/debit card, cash or cheque, and in their invoices/receipts/confirmations of order described the item as the 9000pro but have not supplied you with it you are on, IMHO, pretty firm legal ground.

If this is the situation you could write to them, at their registered address, by recorded delivery, enclosing copies of all the relevant documents. You should make clear that they have, by accepting your payment, contracted to supply you with the item as described. If they are unable/unwilling to do this, within a very short time frame, you will obtain the item elsewhere and will claim the total cost from them.

Be aware that you will have to decide whether you are willing to take them to the small claims court for the difference if, as I suspect they will do initially, they only refund the price you have paid.

It is one thing to be on firm legal ground but another to decide to go to court over it. Not that it is in any way difficult, but it is time and effort and some companies rely on people not fighting to get away with things!

It would probably be a good idea to contact Trading Standards as suggested, both your local office, but also the TS office where Eclipse are based. Also if you used a credit card and it was over £100 you could enlist the help of the credit card company. Finally you might want to check out your exact legal position professionally, some solicitors offer a free first consultation.

  Lone Crow 00:27 04 Apr 2003

I endorse everything bfoc has posted. I'm pretty sure it would be a breeze to sue via the small claims court, but I think the value of the item has to be over £100 - best to check 1st if you contemplate that route. You have to be very clear exactly what you want, too, and state it in very accurate terms. The biggest question really is do you want the aggro of going to court (even the informal Small Claims Court) in order to get your just rewards at the end of the day? On the other hand, even a refund might be ages coming anyway if the company are a dud. LC.

  davidcrash 19:22 04 Apr 2003

Thank you very much for your help everyone.

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