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Consumer & Business Advice
Media releases
2 September 2015

South Australian consumers are being reminded to shop smart when searching for that perfect gift for dad this Father’s Day.

Business Services and Consumers Minister Gail Gago said whether you’re buying products such as power tools or sporting gear, or buying Dad a gift voucher or experience, make sure you are dealing with a reputable business.

“Many people will be on the hunt this weekend for last minute gifts for their dad, but purchases, especially those of significant expense, should not be made in too much haste,” Ms Gago said.

“It is important consumers are aware of their rights regarding returns and exchanges when purchasing goods and of expiry dates when buying vouchers.

“Compliance officers from Consumer and Business Services will be conducting targeted checks this week at retail outlets such as camping, fishing and hardware stores to ensure they are meeting their obligations relating to refund rights, price scanning and bait advertising.

“Shoppers should not be misled by ‘no refund signs’ – they are illegal, as are signs that say ‘No refund on sale items’ and ‘Exchange or credit note only for the return of sale items’.”

Under the Australian Consumer Law consumers have a right to a remedy if an item is faulty, unsafe, different from a sample or description, or doesn’t perform as advertised.

However, consumers are not entitled to a refund or replacement if they simply change their mind about a product.

Ms Gago said consumers should ask about the store’s change of mind policy before they buy, return goods as soon as a problem or defect is found, and keep the receipt as proof of purchase.

“As it has become quite common to purchase gifts online with fast delivery options, we want consumers to also remember to check a website’s terms and conditions and any reviews that may be available to make sure the business is legitimate to avoid being scammed.

“Scammers can set up a fake retailer website that looks like a genuine online store. While the design and layout may look authentic, the scammer could have simply copied a logo, image and text from a genuine site.

“In addition, online shoppers should only be paying for items using a secure payment service. Look for a web address starting with ‘https’ and a closed padlock symbol on their checkout page. A safe option such as PayPal can protect both the buyer and seller.”

Consumers can get more information about their rights and obligations by contacting CBS on 131 882 or visiting the CBS website www.cbs.sa.gov.au