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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
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Is a written promise to refund a payment if the purchaser is

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Is a written promise to refund a payment if the purchaser is not satisfid with the supplied goods enforceable?
This is the promise in question, it is the fifth of five:
Our 5 promises to you,
If you are unsatisfied with your order we will give you a full refund

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Ben
Is a written promise to refund a payment if the purchaser is not satisfid with the supplied goods enforceable?This is the promise in question, it is the fifth of five:Our 5 promises to you,
If you are unsatisfied with your order we will give you a full refundThis is taken from the following link.

Please can you provide me with some background information so that I can assist you. Thank you.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I have paid for some books to be printed and bound, a value of £2950, and the binding is not satisfactory to me.This is after two previous books, a value of £80, were refunded in full due to the same issue. The initial two books were used by myself as a way of checking everything was right with the books before spending the £2950.

OK, thank you for your response. I will review the relevant information and laws and will get back to you as soon as I can. Please do not respond to this message as it will just push your question to the back of the queue and you may experience unnecessary delays. Thank you

Many thanks for your patience. Such a written promise will only be legally enforceable if it formed part of the contractual terms and conditions which you and the other side entered into. A customer charter, where a retailer provides certain ‘promises’ will not usually be legally binding as it will not be part of their formal terms and conditions. They may provide a general statement that you will be refunded in full if you are not satisfied but that could encompass all sorts of situations and your formal rights to a refund will generally be defined further in the formal terms and conditions. To work out whether the customer charter formed part of the terms you need to check what you had agreed to formally before placing an order. Usually there would be a tick box or a statement which says you agree to the terms and conditions by placing the order and if that did not include the customer charter too then it is quite unlikely that this would be a contractually binding promise.

In this case, the site has the formal terms and conditions available here:

They specifically state:

“It is not possible to return products for refund other than in the event of an order being produced to the wrong order specification or not to an acceptable standard. In either of these cases we may (at our discretion) reprint free of charge. Any errors in printing must be reported via e-mail to the following email address***@******.***, please make sure to include your job ID number in the subject line. In order to qualify for a full refund you will need to email us within 3 days of order receipt. We will also require you to return a sample or photographic evidence of the issue.”

So these will be the terms under which you can seek a refund. If you satisfy these conditions but the retailer is refusing to honour the terms and promise of a refund, you can consider taking the matter further for compensation.

This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the steps you must follow should this matter remain unresolved, which I wish to discuss so please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far (by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars) and I can continue with that and answer any further questions you may have. Don’t worry, there I no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your prompt reply Ben.I had noted their terms and conditions, and have sent the requested photographic evidence to them. With the second order being £2950 instead of £80 their is a reluctance to return my money.I do though need these books for the book launch!I await your further reply and will rate your initial response now - five stars.

Thank you. You cannot force them to re-do the order – you may of course request that they do so and hope that they oblige but if they do not then your only option is to get them done elsewhere and seek compensation for these costs from the original retailer.

Whenever a dispute arises over compensation owed by one party to another, the party at fault can be pursued through the civil courts. As legal action should always be seen as a last resort, there are certain actions that should be taken initially to try and resolve this matter informally and without having to involve the courts. It is recommended that the process follows these steps:

1. Reminder letter – if no reminders have been sent yet, one should be sent first to allow the party at fault to voluntarily settle this matter.

2. Letter before action – if informal reminders have been sent but these have been ignored, the party at fault must be sent a formal letter asking them to resolve this amicably within a specified period of time. A reasonable period to demand a response by would be 10 days. They should be advised that if they fail to do contact you in order to resolve this matter, formal legal proceedings will be commenced to pursue the compensation due. This letter serves as a ‘final warning’ and gives the other side the opportunity to resolve this matter without the need for legal action.

3. If they fail to pay or at least make contact to try and resolve this, formal legal proceedings can be initiated. A claim can be commenced online by going to Once the claim form is completed it will be sent to the other side and they will have a limited time to defend it. If they are aware legal proceedings have commenced it could also prompt them to reconsider their position and perhaps force them to contact you to try and resolve this.

Whatever correspondence is sent, it is always advisable to keep copies and use recorded delivery so that there is proof of delivery and a paper trail. The court may need to refer to these if it gets that far.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks for confirming this to me.Unfortunately there's going to be no time to reprint these books correctly before the book launch.Therefore, being reasonable, I would have thought a refund of 50% would be a fair outcome to this for both parties.I'd look to claim a full refund of my money and settle for the above.Could you advise?

do you mean compensation of 50% of the value on top of a full refund?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Sorry for not ring clear. I meant I would ask for the full £2950 to be refunded, and Indin't expect to get that amount.I would therefore expect to settle for just £1475 being the amount refunded.As I have no option but to use the faulty books for the launch.

I see, thanks. Yes that would be reasonable in the circumstances

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks again for all your assistance Ben.Let's see how we get on with them now.Their customer services manager is already late on her own time scale she informed me of to the companies written response to my request over what their solutions to this problem might be.

I hope it works out for you, happy to help in the future if you need further assistance on this, although I hope you won't

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