You may have read in the last day or so, that Mothercare were selling a child’s car seat for less than 50p on their website which should have been priced at £135. An honest mistake and the item was withdrawn from sale soon after, but scores of eagle eyed shoppers took advantage of the offer and purchased one or more.
Understandably Mothercare refused to honour the sale and emailed every customer and refunded his or her money. This raised a furore with customers who had shelled out their hard earned 49p despite getting it refunded and some customers were also offered an additional 10% discount as well. People were quick to voice their “disgust” at Mothercare for not providing them with their order and one person even citing false advertising and contacting Trading Standards.
It does make you wonder, would there be so much vitriol towards Mothercare if they were a small “Mom & Pop” business instead of the multinational giant they are? It is assumed they can cover the loss because they are so big and they should honour the orders anyway.
Now whether you as the consumer has any recourse is all down to the companies Terms & Conditions. Mothercare’s Terms state:
“The display of any product on our website is in no way an offer by us to sell to you. It is your response that is the offer. Accordingly, we are not liable to sell you any product that might be quoted at a price lower than that meant by us.”
This means that mistake or not, you are not entitled to that item. Whether the company sends you the item anyway and shoulders the loss is at their discretion and Trading Law backs them up on this, this is why every online retailer has a tick box or notification where you have to accept the Terms and Conditions before you can proceed with your purchase.
The point I’m meandering toward is this. Read the Terms & Conditions of the company you are purchasing from, Don’t just click the box. The old adage applies “If it looks too good to be true, it probably is.”
For more information on UK Law and your rights as a consumer, click here.
Were Mothercare right or wrong? Hop on over to our Forum and let us know what you think.