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How do you manage DSR (Distance Selling Regulations)?

Bucephalas69 9 279 Wales
23 Mar 2009 9:59PM
The distance selling regulation 2000 covers any goods or products sold over the internet. Under these regs, customers can obtain a full refund for anything purchased upto 7 days from the date delivery is made.

These regulations state that you must make customers aware of their right to cancel at the point of sale in a "durable" medium, i.e; e-mail, post or fax.

I have added this "small print" (where's that macro lens?) to the bottom of their order confirmation e-mail but was wondering how others deal with this (if at all).

Would be keen to hear your views.


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leeroe 15 231 England
23 Mar 2009 10:22PM
Hi Richie,
I have dealt with the DSR for a few years now on both sides of the counter and without question the regs are in bias to the purchaser ! which sometimes can be abused, so becareful. The one that gets me is, customer buys item online from me, gets it and is allowed to open the packaging, "feel" the goods, try the goods for a period of 7 days from date of delivery, if they change their mind they call and say "dont want it" I have to not only give them a full refund INCLUDING THE POSTAGE, but I am also bound to pay for the return postage back to me too. The customer is entitled to request you have the item collected or you re-imburse them for returning it. Its a joke !!

So I include the regs in my T&C's in microprint on the reverse of my invoices.

I like to talk to customers and try and resolve the issue fairly and amicably, nigh on impossible if they have the regs to hand and have read them.

Bucephalas69 9 279 Wales
23 Mar 2009 10:36PM
Thanks for the info leeroe.

I must admit, it's something i overlooked in the last year. As soon as i started looking into it, it did surprise me to say the least.
As well as prints, I usually offer digital downloads in a range of sizes, but i'm thinking that I will knock that on the head now.
It's just too easy for someone to send me an e-mail requesting a refund with nothing to return. It's a little different if it's a physical product that needs to be returned.
As if it isn't hard enough making ends meet already!
Slippery_Jim 10 597 England
23 Mar 2009 11:09PM
Do DSR apply to digital downloads?
triumphv8 10 475 United Kingdom
23 Mar 2009 11:26PM
Most put the cost of return on the buyer and this is allowed as long as it is in the T&C's. - This should be a turn off for people abusing the system.

Downloads are counted as a service so can't be cancelled once you've 'started to deliver the service' provided you've told them you will be starting and they agree and you have provided the written information.
leeroe 15 231 England
24 Mar 2009 9:28AM
If you check with the consumer direct website it does state that T&C's are not above the regulations and thus if a customer requests you collect the goods for return then it is the sellers responsibility to do so. ISTBC but I have just had a similar case whereby I was sent an item and once I had tried it I genuinely didnt like how it operated, the sellers tried to tell me once I had opened the parcel it was non returnable as per their T&C, I informed them of their obligations under the DSR, to which I was told well send it back and we will take it from there. Its the attitude of sellers like this that get the rest of us a bad name, so I dug my heels in told him he had to collect it, after a phone call from CD confirming my standpoint, I informed him and they reluctantly refunded me including return postage.

I dont agree with some of the regs, as it puts undue pressure on the seller and none on the purchaser, but thats the way the DSR work at the moment.

triumphv8 10 475 United Kingdom
24 Mar 2009 10:44AM
Agree T&C do not superceed but as I read it this one is allowed :-

3.55 If you want the consumer to return the goods and to pay for that return, you must make it clear in the contract and as part of the required written information – see paragraph 3.10. If the consumer then fails to return the goods, or sends them at your expense, you can charge them the direct cost to you of the return, even if you have already refunded the consumer’s money.

Surely requesting you to collect is the same as returning at your expense ?

This is key to stop people abusing the regulations - especially on large items - they have to judge the cost of return of them just not liking it.

Here's an example from a place a use quite a bit - 7.3 Except in the case of faulty or misdescribed goods, if you exercise your right of cancellation after the goods have been delivered to you, you will be responsible for returning the goods to the Supplier at your own cost.

Agree they are biased but your example show why they are needed - I buy more stuff online because of the extra rights - I bought a central heating pump from our local plumb centre and needed to return it as the wrong one and they tried to charge me £15 restocking fees - even though he only had to put it on the shelf behind him - I had absolutely no right of recourse - if it was online I could have returned for the cost of a couple of quid postage.

( I refused to give them the satisfaction and sold it on Ebay only loosing a couple of quied)
rowleyG 9 1
19 Apr 2009 9:48PM
Hi. I have a website which does not give prices, or the ability to place orders online. Purchasers can telephone or email to make an individual enquiry and I give them an individual quotation. Most customers are businesses, but some are consumers. Do the DSR's apply to the consumer sales, or are they regarded as one-off contracts concluded by email or telephone, and therefore exempt? It will make a big difference to my business if I have to treat the non-business customers as subject to the DSR's. Any comments most appreciated. Thanks

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