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Thread: been scammed by a supplier, what are my rights?

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    Platinum Member SilverNodashi's Avatar
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    been scammed by a supplier, what are my rights?

    We purchased some goods from a supplier, which are defective. To be exact, it's a hard drive bay, which blew a 160GB hard drive. We took it back, and the new one also blew 2 HDD's - to make sure it's not a drive issue, I used to different makes / sizes an 80GB & a 250GB - the 250GB came out of a machine, and had data on it. I actually had to copy the data to another machine,and put it in there, thinking that the replacement unit won't blow another HDD. But it it did, so I put in a totally different brand / make & size, and blew it as well.

    They say they will replace it with another one, but can't refund me. They can give me a credit note to the value of 30% of the drive though - so, I'm screwed either way.

    What are my rights in this matter. Apparently it's supposed to have a lifetime warranty, but from their response I get the feeling that they don't honor it, nor do they care about their clients much. The replacement unit will be their last for this batch, and they refuse to replace the HDD's, or recover the data.

    What are my rights?
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    Gold Member daveob's Avatar
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    Ask the CEO of the supplier company to stick his personal hard drive into a replacement unit to test it.

    If your talking reasonable value, see a lawyer. If not, write it off to experience and bad mouth the supplier's reputation at every chance you get.
    Watching the ships passing by.

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    Platinum Member SilverNodashi's Avatar
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    Hi Dave,

    How are you?


    They have tested the unit, and confirm that it's blowing hard drives, so the unit is faulty. My problem is with their lack of enthusiasm towards their clients. The data recovery services alone cost me a grand, and to replace a 250GB HDD just under R1k! The purchase price of the unit was something like R380 or so, but they only want to credit me 30% (as per their policy on returned goods). In this case I feel that it's not a returned good, but rather a faulty unit. And I don't want a 3rd one just to find out it's doing the same. The first 2 already cost me a lot of money in replacing client's HDD's & data.

    My question is more towards the trade industry, i.e. when is the consumer protected in such a scenario? I personally can't see the value in ripping a client off of R400 just because of my own personal agendas (stupid company policies), and would rather give him his money back than loosing a client, and reputation. But they seem to think different.
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    Gold Member daveob's Avatar
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    Well, if you've spoken to the General Manager, and gone as far up the line as the CEO / Chairman ( do NOT take "he's in a meeting" as acceptable - put your foot down and insist on holding for him ) and you still have no joy, then maybe it's time for a bit or mass forum action.

    Post the name and contact number of the Chairman and let's see if a few calls from the forum members can change their minds to be reasonable.
    Watching the ships passing by.

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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    If there are no terms, conditions and notices attached to whatever you might have signed/agreed to in the order and delivery process, common law applies and claims for consequential damage arising from supply of a defective product is definitely available.

    That's normally quite a big "if" though. And the usual problem arises even then - is the size of the claim sufficient to make the cost of litigation viable.

    There is some legislation in the pipeline with the intention of giving the consumer some protection on things like this. Doesn't help right now though.

    Surely the supplier is at least embarrassed at supplying two faulty units in a row?

    Maybe make it clear what you expect as fair. You might be looking for something worth (for example) R1k in compensation which they'll happily cave for, but they're stonewalling because they're nervous of a claim with more zeros on the end of it.

    In negotiations you're supposed to start high and get talked down, but to do that it needs to be a negotiation in the first place, which means you need to have some sort of leverage. If you have no leverage, I've found just being straight-up about your expectations can yield surprisingly positive results.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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    Platinum Member SilverNodashi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daveob View Post
    Well, if you've spoken to the General Manager, and gone as far up the line as the CEO / Chairman ( do NOT take "he's in a meeting" as acceptable - put your foot down and insist on holding for him ) and you still have no joy, then maybe it's time for a bit or mass forum action.

    Post the name and contact number of the Chairman and let's see if a few calls from the forum members can change their minds to be reasonable.
    I've tried this, but it doesn't seem to make any difference. Some companies in this country are well aware of the fact that their mass sales will cover losses like this, and it's easier to just "write it off" and make the client silently go away, than trying to solve the issue
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    Bronze Member Sieg's Avatar
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    faulty goods and legal liability

    SoftDux:

    Dave is right. The manufacturer and seller of defective goods is legally liable for such defect. If the defect is serious, then the contract can be cancelled, the purchaser can tender return of the goods, on payment of what was paid for the purchase price. Sometimes even consequential damages can be claimed. If the defect is not serious, then a reduction in the purchase price can be claimed.

    I would suggest you get a letter of demand sent out through the Clerk of the Small claims court and then a summons served on the supplier and the manufacturer (or SA representative of the manufacturer). Then they usually settle because they don't like to come to Small Claims Courts after hours, sometimes far away from where they live / do business. I am busy doing this to General Motors for a defective water pump on my Corsa Bakkie: it only lasted 14,000 kilometers and they claim it was NOT defective.

    Also: please name and shame the supplier and the product so that we all know to avoid this product.

    Sieg

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    Platinum Member SilverNodashi's Avatar
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    Just to update you guys on this. Esquire doesn't seem to care about their client's problems, and they don't return calls or emails at all. The MD's are NEVER in the office, and they can't be contacted by any means possible.

    And I'm tired of being put through from one department to another and doing this for 2 hours at a time.
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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Does Esquire only supply COD?
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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    Hi Softdux...

    Just a question, is the power supply that came with the portable harddrive the same one you plugged into it.
    Its easy to use another 'handy' one from another enclosure as the connections are all the same, however the power supply output voltage may differ by .5 of a volt causing the harddrive to fry.

    If you have other portable drive enclosures from different manufacturers and they are already plugged into your pc and the socket outlet then its easy to unplug and plug in another manufacturers enclosure? I made this mistake frying 3 drives in the process...bitter pill

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