Zavvi threatens customers with legal action after accidentally sending Tearaway PSVita bundles
Zavvi accidentally sent some customers who had pre-ordered the Vita title Tearaway with the Tearaway PSVita bundle instead, which includes a Vita console last month. As a result of sending a £169.99 Vita bundle instead of a £19.99 game, the online retailer is threatening to take legal action against anyone who fails to return their console. Many customers have decided to keep hold of the console, believing that they have no legal obligation to return the goods, which has prompted Zavvi to threaten any legal action they have available to them.
“We write further to recent email correspondence that we have sent you regarding your attempt to purchase PS Vita game Tearaway from our Zavvi website on or around May 10th 2013,”
“As you are aware, as a result of a technical error, you were not sent Tearaway (priced at approximately £19.99) and instead were sent a PS Vita (priced at approximately £169.99). This was an error on our part and we apologise for any inconvenience that this has caused you.
“We have tried to contact you on numerous occasions to give you the opportunity to return this item to us (at our cost and at no inconvenience to yourself) but to date you have refused to do so.
“This is our final notice to politely remind you that you did not order, or pay for, a PS Vita and if you fail to contact us by 5pm (UK time) on December 10th 2013 to arrange a convenient time for the PS Vita to be collected we reserve the right to enforce any and/or all legal remedies available to us.”
However the Citizens Advice Bureau states, “The Consumer Protection (Distance Selling) Regulations say you have a right to keep goods delivered to you that you didn’t ask for. But if goods are sent to you by mistake, you need to contact whoever sent them to let them know and ask them to collect the goods”
“If you receive goods you have not ordered and which haven’t been sent by mistake, you can treat the goods as an unconditional gift and you can do what you want with them.”
So it would appear that while Zavvi are being extremely forceful with customers, those who received the PSVita bundle aren’t legally allowed to keep the item if they haven’t contacted Zavvi. If Zavvi failed to collect the goods at their own expense however within a reasonable time-frame, then the customer would then have every right to keep the item.
The bundle can not be treated as an unconditional gift as the items were sent by mistake, and were not items which weren’t ordered or sent by mistake. Although it is not clear cut as the CAB goes on to state “You have no obligation to return the goods to the trader or allow the trader to collect the goods. However, it would be reasonable for you to contact the trader to explain what has happened and give them a chance to collect the goods from you.”
Although with Zavvi’s reputation of messing up various orders, it’s likely this whole process could end up costing them more money in the long-run than what the consoles they sent by mistake are worth. Are these customers going to use Zavvi again? I doubt it. Would I use Zavvi now? Nope.