The most trusted and popular consumer complaints website
Explore your opportunities! Create an account or Sign In

Readers Digest / billed for unordered merchandise

1 2705 Brushy Creek Tr..Mesquite, TX, United States Review updated:
Contact information:
Phone: 972-968-7026

I received a Reader's Digest book a couple of months ago. I did not order it. A month later I received another book. Also unordered. My "account" has been cancelled, but they have sent me a bill for $30.28. I have the book, but I am not going to return it by paying the postage myself.

Sort by: UpDate | Rating


  • Sk
      10th of Mar, 2010
    0 Votes

    In with the first book, there was probably a statement to the effect that "If you do not cancel before {date here}, you will automatically continue to receive additional books at {price per book here}". By not thoroughly reading through the materials sent to you, you actually entered into a binding agreement (horrible business practice though it might be, it is completely legal).

    Unfortunately, to eliminate your financial responsibility for the book you have, you are legally bound to return it at your own cost. If you fail to do so, Reader's Digest may pursue collections on the account and your credit history may be severely damaged. I'm not sure how you feel, but I certainly wouldn't want my credit destroyed over something as simple as a little postage to send back a book. By the way, make very certain that you send it back "Return Receipt Requested" - it costs a tiny bit more, but if you continue to be billed for it, it will stand up in court and could make the difference in your case.

    Good luck!

  • Dd
      15th of Mar, 2010
    0 Votes

    Dear Cynthia,

    I am an employee of Reader's Digest. Please accept my apology for any concern or inconvenience this matter may have caused you.

    I will call you directly, since you have your phone number listed here.

    However, if I do not reach you, please contact us directly at 1-800-463-8820 and a representative will be more than happy to assist you in cancelling your enrollment in the series.

    Senior Associate
    Customer Care

  • Ca
      14th of Dec, 2010
    0 Votes

    Though I'm unsure why those books were sent to you:

    I was thinking the same thing; that I had been charged for an item that was returned to be processed at a separate facility. Apparently I received a follow-up bill with regards to a due payment that was charged a late fee. I called late at night after customer service was closed and typed in my account number, and it stated the bill on the account was $0. Because the processing center is so far behind in updating the billing center, they send out bills before receiving confirmation of a return.

    Part of the problem I have is that the bill started as result of an offer for a free gift if I filled out an online send address, etc. The offer made no mention of a book that would be charged $30+, and the free gift was supposedly a unique sort of paperclips. When I received the package it included no bill whatsoever. Not long afterwards I received a bill in the mail via envelope. Looking online was the only source of an actual contact number or any info on how to process a return; and so I dug into the trash to find the cardboard box, placed the book (that I thought was a bit of a joke and not worth $3 at a used book store) and wrote on the bill statement, "Do not want!" I glued the box back up so it didn't appear to be opened and wrote on the box, "return to sender."

    I suppose I could be accused of postal fraud. . . (though in truth they receive hundreds per month from shipments I make, ) and if I wasn't abusing the postal service by placing different contents in them, I can't say it was abusing it if it wasn't a needed service.

    Reader's Digest is a bit deceptive though I can't blame them. They could probably improve upon infrastructure communication, with whatever is happening between divisions, and perhaps that was the reason for some mix up. They weren't doing anything illegal necessarily, as long as they do honor returns properly and are not out of line with their practices.

  • Fe
      11th of Jan, 2012
    0 Votes

    Title 39, Section 3009, U.S. code clearly covers the handling of unordered merchandise sent through the U.S. Mail. Please google and read it or call your local Postal Inspection Service Office for clarification. It might seem right to return the book, but if you are sure you never ordered it and it came in the mail, you may legally treat it as a gift and probably should.

Post your comment