BBB Offers Advice on Returning Merchandise


Return fraud comes inmany forms, but the main methods of return fraud involve purchasing merchandisefor short-term use and then returning the item, returning stolen merchandise,or using reused, stolen or falsified receipts to return merchandise for a profit.

To put you and yourgift recipients in the best position for a happy return or exchange, BBB offersthis advice:

Know and understand the seller's return policy. Most return policieswill be listed on a company's website or on the back of the receipt. Make sureto fully understand what's required for a return or exchange, and if you havequestions, call the store directly to ask about your specific situation.

• Keep original packaging. Some stores may require products be returnedin original purchase condition, unused or un-opened.

• Bring identification. Because of return fraud, some retailers will askfor identification when making a return. If you're returning or exchanging agift that you bought, bring the credit card used to make that purchase.

• Read product warranty first. In some cases, retail stores are notliable if the product turns up defective or damaged. They may require consumersto mail the product directly to the manufacturer in order to receive monetaryrefunds, credit or product replacement.

• Don't delay. In almost every case, a store will require an item bereturned within a specific time frame. If you wait too long, you may miss yourchance at returning the item.

• Keep the receipt. Include a gift receipt with all gifts, so it'seasier for the recipient to return or exchange the gift if it's not the rightfit.

For more information, find the BBB at