Advice to Mothercare customers
11 March 2013
NSW Fair Trading is advising Mothercare customers who are concerned about any dealings with Mothercare Australia Limited to initially contact the store of purchase to resolve their concerns.
On 29 January 2013 Mothercare Australia Limited was placed under voluntary administration.
The appointed administrators, BRI Ferrier, have advised Fair Trading today that trading will continue. However unprofitable stores will close.
BRI Ferrier has also advised:
- Price Promise - price matching services will continue.
- Mothercare and Kids Card Loyalty Points - As of 1 February 2013, loyalty points will not be accrued until further notice.
- Existing loyalty rewards can only be redeemed on Mothercare and Early Learning Centre branded products, however the value of the Mothercare and/or Early Learning Centre products must be double the value of the reward points.
- Orders - For all existing orders, Mothercare is working on obtaining stock and will contact customers directly once the situation is clearer. Refunds will not be given on outstanding customer order deposits as at 30 January 2013.
- Car Seat Fitting - this service is unavailable until further notice.
- Lay-bys - the lay-by service cannot be provided at this time. However existing lay-bys will be honoured and customers will be communicated with and kept up to date on payment requirements and collection dates. Lay-bys can be cancelled however no refund on any payments will be given on any lay-by created before 30 January 2013 nor will exchanges be offered. Lay-bys created on or after the 30 January 2013 can be cancelled and a refund will be given, minus the administration fee. If an outstanding lay-by is not finalised, all payments will be forfeited.
- Gift Cards and Credit Notes - Mothercare and Early Learning Centre gift cards and credit notes cannot currently be redeemed. However the Administrators request that customers retain the gift card or credit note until a final decision about this area of the business is made.
- Hire Programs - This program has been suspended, however, existing agreements will continue.
- Product guarantees and Warranty - Warranty on any product will be honoured under ACL and Credit Law conditions and individual supplier terms. Where customers have changed their mind an exchange will be offered. This must be within 14 days of purchase, with a receipt.
- Refunds - Refunds will not be provided for change of mind however customers can exchange only for any full priced item that is returned in as-new condition within 14 days of purchase and with a receipt. No refund, exchange or credit note will be offered on stock sold at a reduced price. If stock is faulty, unfit for purpose or does not match the sample description and was purchased before 30 January 2013 then neither a refund nor an exchange will be offered. If the product was purchased after 29 January 2013, a refund or exchange for an identical product (whether on sale or at full price) can be offered based on the nature of the problem.
- Photography vouchers - The free photography vouchers for every purchase of $150 or more (for Mothercare stores) and $75 or More (for Kids Central and Early Learning Centre stores) are still available.
If customers are unsuccessful in resolving their issues with the trader they can contact NSW Fair Trading on 13 32 20 for information and assistance.
Any consumer who has paid for goods and services that have not been received are encouraged to: contact the administrators to register as an unsecured creditor; and, if your purchase was paid by credit card, contact your credit card provider and request a chargeback.
Chargeback is a refund facility available from credit card providers. It may be possible for a consumer to request a chargeback from their credit card provider in circumstances where goods or services that have been ordered have not been provided, yet have been charged to their credit card.
A time limit may apply for the use of this facility. For further information regarding chargeback, consumers should contact their credit card provider.
To register as an unsecured creditor, contact BRI Ferrier, Phone: 02 8263 2300 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Fair Trading has raised concerns with the administrator about the wording and their intent in relation to ‘Refunds - faulty goods, unfit for purpose or does not match the sample’. The administrator has indicated they will provide clarification of this issue.
Mr Stowe said under the Australian Consumer Law, a supplier has a legal obligation to comply with consumer guarantee provisions relating to consumer detriment.
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