Posted on 03. Sep, 2010 in News

In the lead up to Fathers’ Day (Sunday 5 September 2010), Consumer Affairs Minister Tony Robinson reminded Victorian shoppers looking for presents about their rights on refunds.

Mr Robinson said shoppers had every right to return a product if:

  • it is faulty and the buyer did not know about the fault when they purchased it;
  • the item does not do the job the buyer was told it would do; or
  • if the item does not match the description or sample the buyer was shown.


While a business may offer to repair, exchange or provide a credit note instead of a refund, the buyer has the right to demand a refund if the product does not meet the conditions of purchase.

“The Brumby Labor Government is standing up for Victorian consumers by making sure they aren’t left out of pocket by enforcing fair and clear laws on refunds,” he said.

“Remember, shops don’t have to refund your money if you have simply changed your mind or found the same item cheaper elsewhere.

“Also, hang on to receipts as stores do not have to provide a refund if you cannot provide proof of purchase.”

When consumers return a product for a refund they should:

  • report the fault and return the goods within a reasonable timeframe (what is reasonable will vary according to price and the way the goods were described);
  • provide details of the fault and the chosen remedy;
  • provide proof of purchase; and
  • stop using faulty goods until they can be returned.


Last year, Consumer Affairs Victoria (CAV) received almost 13,000 enquiries and over 3,400 complaints concerning refunds.

Mr Robinson said gift vouchers and gift cards could be a potential source of confusion for consumers, with more than 165 enquiries and around 40 complaints in the last financial year.

“Gift vouchers are a great gift idea, but before you buy or use one, check the terms and conditions so you know how long you have before it expires and how it can be redeemed,” he said.

For more information about refunds and gift vouchers, contact Consumer Affairs Victoria on 1300 55 81 81 or visit

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