Best Buy / farudulent return policy
Best Buy will not take my defective Sony Vaio laptop back without a 15% restocking fee. I spoke with Sheryl Harris, consumer advocate for the Cleveland Plain Dealer on 1/13/09. Her comment: 'Pete, Best Buy has some sort of agreement with the Ohio attorney general's office, which sued it over customer service and other issues. You may want to file a complaint with the Ohio AG -- www.ag4ohio.gov -- because usually when companies have these types of agreements they take care of things brought to their attention by the AG very quickly. It just may save you added hassle. Sheryl'
1/6/09 - purchased new Sony Vaio Laptop VGN-FW235J/H (clearance)for $808.11. Laptop was shipped to my home.
Received laptop however several defects:
1. Dead pixels on screen
2. On/off switch misaligned
3. Factory installed software was defective/corrupted (Internet Explorer would crash)
Returned laptop to Best Buy in Cleveland, Ohio and store promptly replaced laptop on 1/10/09.
Tried new laptop at home. This laptop was also defective:
1. Upon turning on laptop there was a loud noise from the hard drive.
2. Factory installed software was defective/corrupted (Internet Explorer would crash as well as propagate screen with multiple windows crashing the computer itself, scroll mouse would not be recognized and would not work properly, printer would not work ... I do have the latest Vista compatible 64 bit drivers for these devices).
Attempted to return this to the store for full credit on 1/12/09. After keeping me waiting for a half hour Best Buy claimed there was no defect in the laptop. Service manager Mo Hamdan stated that if I returned the laptop I would be charged 15% for restocking fee. He said that the hardware tested good. I again stated my problems with the laptop and again he insisted that if I return it I would be charged 15% ($112.50) or exchange for another laptop. I did not want this option since the Sony model we bought and were returning as defective had been our choice. Obviously with two defective machines it no longer was our choice. I than stated I would take them to small claims court if not resolved. He said go ahead. I demanded to speak with his manager ... he refused. Best Buy refused to take the laptop back ... I took pictures of the irate store manger charging after me to take the computer. In one picture you can see that he had the laptop box at almost head level. I fled the store. Best Buy refused to issue a receipt for the return.
I attempted to call two other Best Buy stores (North Olmsted and Mayfield Hts) to talk with a manager. Neither store picked up the phone. I attempted to resolve this with Best Buy customer relations that evening and talked with someone with a like 'Latef' at [protected] who said they would log my complaint and pass on to the managers.
1/13/09 I tried calling the store but apparently the store was not taking calls. I again called Best Buy customer relations and spoke with someone that identified himself as 'Leep'. I again gave my complaint and added the question ... if Best Buy considered the laptop to be defect free and wanted to charge a restocking fee, why would they offer another laptop with a restocking fee? Obviously no customer service since I requested a full refund and by offering another laptop they were admitting there was a problem. 'Leep' kept me on the phone on hold for a very long time. He stated he spoke with John the store manager and that I either pick up the laptop or return it with a 15% restocking fee. He also stated that I had 'abandoned the product' at Best Buy.
I contacted VISA disputes and they are working on a full charge back against Best Buy. I told VISA that Best Buy claims that I "abandoned" the laptop in the store, even though I clearly attempted to return it
for full credit and even have the card and picture of the violent service manager. Visa disputes says that I will be covered and consider that what I did was "left product with merchant".
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