This should be the final update to the Argos saga. Hopefully.
So, I reported Argos to trading standards. I got this response from them:
I understand from your email that at the start of November you ordered a bed and mattress from an online trader which stated would be 5 days for delivery. The goods were eventually delivered on the 27th but one of the pieces was for a different bed. You have asked the trader to collect the item and refund you which they have advised they will do today. They had also agree to look at refunding you for a day’s holiday you had to take but have now refused to do so.
Your rights and obligations
Under The Consumer Rights Act 2015 you could claim that when delivered the goods were not of satisfactory quality or fit for purpose. This may entitle you to reject the goods for a full refund under your short term right to reject which covers goods for the first 30 days after purchase. You should be refunded within 14 days of the goods being returned to the trader. The onus or burden of proof will be on you to prove the goods are not of satisfactory quality.
You may be entitled to make a claim for consequential loss if you have had any loss of earnings but the law would look for you to provide evidence of this and why you believe that the trader is liable.
If you are unable to resolve this with the trader then as you paid for the item on your debit card you may be entitled to make a claim against your card provider for a refund under a scheme called Chargeback, this is a voluntary scheme so your car provider is not required to be a member. There is also usually a time limit for any claim, we would advise that you speak to your card provider for more information.
Your next steps
Should the trader fail to collect the goods then we would advise that you formalise your complaint in writing to the trader stating a reasonable period of time for them to reply back, send this by recorded delivery so you can prove it has been received and keep a copy of the letter for your own records.
There are template letters available on our website, click here for the most appropriate to your complaint.
What we’ll do
We will notify Trading Standards of the trader’s activities. Whilst this would not help with your complaint, this is valuable intelligence for them, which may be taken into consideration in any future dealings they have with the trader.
After that – before I’d had to take any further action – Argos actually collected the bed! Then began the adventure to actually receive my refund. I let them know what was going on via email:
Well, after the last email, the bed was finally collected yesterday (5th December, a full month after I placed this order in the first place). However, the delivery driver was unable to let me sign for anything, as his PDA device was apparently out of order.
Given my current experience so far, I would like you to confirm – is my refund now being processed, and when can I expect it to come through?
On the 6th, they sent me a confirmation that I could expect a refund within 7 working days. Ok.
Thank you for your email regarding your refund.
I can confirm you refund has been processed and should be showing on your Visa statement within the next 7 working days.
Surprise, surprise, it turned out that this was in fact another lie. I ended up phoning them 7 days later to ask them where my refund was. The woman I spoke to asked if they had collected the bed. They seemed to have no record of collecting things. Awesome! I had to send another email.
I still have yet to see a refund either in my account or in the pending transactions of my account. I have once again phoned you to ask where my refund is, and I can apparently expect a call back within a few days, as there seems to be no update in your records as to the status of my order.
Let me be clear. You have messed me around completely. I am out £299.99. You collected the bed on Monday 5th December. I noted down the registration plate of the lorry and the time of collection, as the delivery drivers were unable to let me sign for the collection, as their PDA was conveniently not working. If your delivery drivers run as many other companies do, this will match up with their GPS system on the day.
Trading Standards have told me that if I don’t receive my refund within 14 days of collection, I have a case. I will be taking this further if you refuse to give back the money I am owed, due to your inability to send your goods on time or as described.
For reference (although you should be able to find this in one of the MANY emails I have sent about this) – my order number is *********.
Where is my refund?
This (a day later, I may add) generated this email:
Thank you for your email regarding the above query, I have looked over the notes of the sale in question and can see that the refund has been actioned and should be in your account in 3-5 working days. I do apologise for any delays you have experienced and wish you a great Christmas and New Year ahead.
The refund eventually landed in my account on the 19th. Exactly 14 days later.
In addition, Argos actually phoned me. They’re going to send me a cheque for £50 to apologise for the inconvenience. But that won’t be processed until the 28th December, as they’re all going on holiday now.
At this point, I’m going to leave it there. Trading Standards are investigating, so the relevant authorities are involved. I’m not holding my breath on actually receiving a cheque, and I certainly will not be using their services again – or recommending them to anyone else.