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Ely
Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 100553
Experience:  Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
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I will copy and paste my story. i live in NY. purchased

This answer was rated:

i will copy and paste my story.
JA: What state are you in? And is a local attorney or other consumer protection advocate helping with this?
Customer: i live in NY. purchased online CA based company. no one helping yet
JA: Have you contacted the manufacturer?
Customer: i returned 2 unused watches and they charged me a restocking fee of 10% over $950 not according to thier terms of agreement
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: no

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I am sorry to hear about this situation. Can you please clarify:

1) What does their agreement say about restocking fees, if anything at all? Or, it is silent about restocking fees?

2) What do you mean they charged you? As in, they charged a credit card they had on file? Or they sent you a bill? If they sent you a bill, have you paid it yet, or not?

This is not an answer, but an information request. I need this information to answer your question. Please reply, so I can answer your question. Thank you in advance.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
sorry for the delay just getting the file
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
To whom it may concern,
I purchased 2 watches from Authenticwatches.com.
One watch was purchased on July 12, 2016 for $4875.00 order #133257 and a second watch was purchased on July13, 2016 for $4975.00 order #133293
As per the terms of sale any watch that is less than $5,000 can be returned within 30 for a full refund. The terms spell out in great detail that the only acceptable method of return is USPS registered and insured mail. Fedex and UPS are not to be used.
I mailed the watches exactly as instructed with USPS registered and insured mail on Friday 8/5 with an estimated delivery of 8/8 which was well with the 30 day window.
The only reason I did not send them Fedex which would have been far easier for me was because the terms said not to do so.
The only reason I did not mail them USPS 1 day delivery was because it was not available when purchased with the mail insurance.
I checked the tracking number the week of 8/8/16 and saw that the delivery was delayed and would not be delivered by the expected delivery date. I immediately email authentic watches and informed them that I had returned the package as instructed and there was a delay. Authenticwatches replied to the email saying that-
“Dear Dov,
Thank you for your email.We will forward your email and tracking information to our return department. We will let you know if there are any issues.Let us know if you have further questions or concerns.
Best regards,
Donnie”
They also sent another email saying –“
Dear Dov,
Thank you for your email and for providing the tracking number. We have noted this information with your order and will process your return when the package is received.
Please let us know if you have any further questions or concerns.
Best regards,
Maddison”
On 8/22 I received an email saying that I was issued a refund for order #133257 in the amount of $4387.50 and $4477.50 for order #133293
I sent Authenticwatches several emails that according to their terms I should have been issued a full refund and have been denied my request several times.
To the terms of sale I believe I am not required to pay a 10% restocking fee for the following three reasons.
Reason #1
Authenticwatches provided me with very specific instructions as to how I was to return the watches to them. I actually and meticulously complied with all their directions to the letter. They stated in their conditions for return that I was to utilize the USPS as the medium for the return to them, within 30 days and provide for insurance. I did so and followed each and every instruction in the posting the watches that they specified. The USPS accepted the package for delivery to them on August 8th, the appropriate date. Unfortunately, the USPS internally experienced problems and delivered the package to them late.
However, I am advised that once I caused the package to be delivered to their agent with proper instruction to deliver it on time to them as they directed and I paid them their charges to do so, I am not liable for the issues experienced by thier agent, the USPS. Similar to IRS tax filing – as long as a return is postmarked by 4/15 it is filed on time.
Reason #2
I emailed the seller when I became aware the shipment was delayed. The Seller acknowledged in an email that return would be processed and if any issues they would reach out to me. They did not reach out to me. This is an indication that there were no issues.
Reason # 3
Sellers contract that they have posted on their website states that all purchases less than $5000 purchased with amazon payments etc. will be issued a full refund. Purchases were less than $5000 and purchased with amazon payments.
It goes on to say that all other purchases etc. Meaning over $5000 or less than $5000 purchased in another manner will have a 10% restocking fee.
It seems that returns past 30 days will not be accepted. They accepted my return as they should have-but deducted a 10% restocking fee!
Nowhere does is say that returns past 30 days will be subject to a 10% restocking fee.
If you have a chance check out seller’s reviews on Yelp. They extremely negative. I wish I had prior to purchasing from them.
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
i paid using amazon payments and disputed with Amex.
Amex said they can not force them to pay.

I am sorry but I cannot read the pdf attached - it is too fine/faded. Can you tell me if there is any language in the contract about restocking? Or not? If so, then please tell me what it states?

"i paid using amazon payments and disputed with Amex.
Amex said they can not force them to pay."

So you got the 10% restocking refunded?

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
this was our last email exchange
Dear Dov,
Thank you for your email.
As is stated in our buyer agreement, we do not accept returns past 30 days. In your case, an exception was made to accept the item back. You were given a refund with a 10% restocking fee as part of our terms for accepting the return despite our policy. We are not able to reimburse you the restocking fee.
Please let us know if you have any further questions or concerns.
Best Regards,
Gina
Dov **********
Reply All
Sent ItemsThursday, November 03, 2016 1:09 PM
I have tried disputing these charges of roughly $1000 with Amex. They have advised me that they cannot force you to return the money.
I am requesting that you reconsider your position. I have written below.
“I, therefore, believe that you will review the foregoing internally and/or with your counsel and fully reimburse me for the restocking fee, so that we do not experience any unnecessary and unpleasant sequels.”
My Father in Law is a well-respected class action attorney and does not usually deal with cases of this nature but he has informed me that he will help ensure that I receive the money that you have taken from me that is not within your policy.
Thank you,
Dov ***********
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
http://www.authenticwatches.com/authenticwatches-no-restocking-fee.htmlthey have very specific return instructions only USPS registered mail.
no fedex or ups. i mailed as instructed on 8/5 expected delivery 8/8 (2 day - they best available when purchasing the insurance they insist on) usps delivered the package 8/15. a week late. it arrived on day 33. they "did me a favor by accepting the return-but to the liberty of a 10% restocking fee" not in the terms
Okay. I think I am on the same page now.
Now the website states:
"You were given a refund with a 10% restocking fee as part of our terms for accepting the return despite our policy."
This is because they made an exception for you, where they did not have to refund. So the regular rules of refunds and no restocking fees fly out the window.
Now, during your negotiations for the exchange, or, in whatever contract signed for the exchange, did they ever mention the 10% refund fee?
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Not at all!
they took the return and credited my a refund less 10%!!
i emailed asking for a refund several times and they just say they did me a favor to take it back beyond their 30 days
Thank you, D.
Someone in your situation may have a claim, but it is very subjective.
Here is what happened. They did not have to take the refund. They did so when you attempted to return it post the time of the deadline, but in doing so, they also kept 10% of the money, without returning the item or checking with you, first.
You can make an argument that had you known that they would keep 10%, you would not have returned the item. The problem is that this is a contractual situation which falls into a "gray area" of law, meaning it is on a case by case basis because there is no real statutory law about this.
What you can do possibly is sue in small claims for unjust enrichment. Unjust enrichment does not require the performance of any wrongful act by the one enriched - what is required, generally, is that a party hold property "under such circumstances that in equity and good conscience he ought not to retain it" (Miller v Schloss, 218 N.Y. 400, 407; see Sharp v Kosmalski, 40 N.Y.2d 119, 123, supra; Sinclair v Purdy, 235 N.Y. 245, 253-254). Most courts courts interpret this to include money. So one can ask the Court that they be ordered to return either the items, or, pay back the 10%. Then it would be up to the Judge to decide.
Perhaps sending them a letter threatening this (from an attorney's office is best) may be enough to scare them into refunding the 10% as needed, without having to go to Court.
Please note: If I tell you simply what you wish to hear, this would be unfair to you. I need to be honest with you and sometimes this means providing information that is not optimal. Negative ratings are reserved for experts who are rude or for erroneous information. Please rate me on the quality of my information; do not punish me for my honesty.
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
i did some online work. looks like they are crooks. would a class action be possible?
https://www.yelp.com/biz/authentic-watches-moorpark
https://www.trustlink.org/Reviews/Authenticwatchescom-205659582
https://www.amazon.com/forum/watches?cdForum=Fx2L5KU4X1FHGX3&cdThread=Tx2LQ8URI64QY55
http://www.bbb.org/santa-barbara/business-reviews/jewelers-retail/authenticwatches-com-in-moorpark-ca-92003976/complaints#breakdown
59 complaints The Business addressed the issues within the complaint, but the consumer did not accept the response, OR BBB has not heard back from the consumer as to their satisfaction. (57 complaints)
The 2 that were resolved to satisfaction were very dissatisfied J
From one of the reviewers on amazon
I write about "AuthenticWatches.com" which is currently selling through Amazon.BE VERY CAREFUL. This company claims they are a corporation located in Moorpark CA. They are hooked up with the Better Business Bureau in that area. The BBB also claims that they are a corporation by the name of "AuthenticWatches.com" or "Authentic Watches". However, a California Secretary of State website search listed no corporation or LLC registered in California by either name. Furthermore, the AuthenticWatches.com website states that they began business as McPherson Jewelers. A California Secretary of State website search listed no corporation or LLC by that name registered in California. Furthermore, the AuthenticWatches.com website identified their Moorpartk CA address as a call center.I telephoned AuthenticWatches.com itself and asked what the name of their corporation was. They refused to reveal their own name !!!BE VERY CAREFUL. All their guarantees of authenticity, new condition, and warranty won't mean much if you cannot identify and locate the seller.
While technically it is possible, it may be more trouble than it is worth. Most attorneys would pass on a class action because there is simply not much money to make there.
Let me know if you did not see my original answer about unjust enrichment.
Gentle Reminder: Please, use REPLY or SEND button to keep chatting, or RATE POSITIVELY and SUBMIT your rating when we are finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating.
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
my father in law attorney advised me that since they instructed me to return in a specific manner usps.
usps is THEIR AGENT and therefor i returned within the 30 days of requirement.
please read the 3 reasons that i wrote why i should receive a full refund.
you responded to reason 3 only

Oh, no problem.

Reason #1 - Disagree. Even though they provided meticulous intructions, just because you followed them does not mean that they must refund 100%, unless they stated that they would. Which I guess they did not. However, this would cause most reasonable people to consider that it is implied that it would, which goes to argument of unjust enrichment.

Reason #2 - Disagree for the same reason.

Reason #3 - see original answer.

Gentle Reminder: Please, use REPLY or SEND button to keep chatting, or RATE POSITIVELY and SUBMIT your rating when we are finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating.

Hello again. This is a courtesy check in to see if you needed anything else in regards ***** ***** question because you never responded or replied positively. I am simply touching base. Let me know. Thanks!
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