Best Buy Screws Up Gift Return, Causes Family Awkwardness

Whenever we post a Best Buy story, commenters scold the tipster: don’t they read the site? They should have known better than to shop at Best Buy in the first place! It’s impossible (I hope) to blame Todd, though–his mother-in-law bought him a gadget gift there. A car dock for the wrong type of smartphone, along with a gift receipt. This should have been a smooth and simple transaction, right? Of course not.

I was given an in car phone dock by my Mother-in-law that wasn’t for my phone. She thought I had an iPhone but I have a droidRAZR. I went into Best Buy to return it for cash. I had the gift reciept and everything should have just worked out.

When I got there they said I would need the original receipt and not the gift receipt. Needless to say, I didn’t have it. After a few minutes of explaining again why I didn’t have the original receipt they said they could just print off another copy of it. Why didn’t they just do that in the first place? They then finished the transaction and handed me a reciept and no money, and stated that they put the money back onto the American Express card used in the purchase, which isn’t my card.

Now I have to go ask my Mother-in-law for the money. Best Buy screws it up once again. This is why I tell everyone I know not to shop there.

The part of this story that has left me scratching my head is this: if a gift receipt isn’t enough to allow a customer to return that gift, then what purpose does a gift receipt serve?

Comments

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  1. bnceo says:

    I don’t see the problem here. Here is what should have happened:

    Ask how the purchased was made. Via cash, CC, Debit Card, other

    If made in cash, you get cash back.
    If made with a CC, a refund GOES BACK TO THE CC.

    Why not do an even exchange for the Droid Razr version of the car dock? Unless it’s not available.

    I blame the customer here mostly. Best Buy gets crap cause they didn’t warn him how the purchase was made.

    • r-nice says:

      Prices probably didn’t match up.

      If you’re right then Best Buy didn’t do anything wrong but that sucks for someone trying to return a gift, as the story has shown.

    • philpm says:

      Did you miss the part where the OP received it as a gift and had a gift receipt? The gift receipt should allow the person to receive cash, and not have the credit go back to the original purchaser’s credit card. So big BB fail here.

      • Awesome McAwesomeness says:

        Not if it was charged to a credit card. If it was a CC purchase, they either get and exchange, a gift card, or the money is refunded to the card owner.

        I vote he just lets it go. I would never ask someone for the money back from something like that.

      • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

        That would be a good way to get free cash advances from one’s credit card. Buy a $1,000 TV with a credit card, get a gift receipt, return the TV, and walk out with $1,000.

        • longdvsn says:

          well, most places wouldn’t do cash but instead provide store gift card for gift returns – which won’t work for the cash advance. BB didn’t do either for the OP – they took his property and gave him nothing – absolutely nothing – in return.

          • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

            I wish the OP was a little more detailed.

            I’d be curious to know if he was offered a gift card/exchange at all. It seems like there was a massive miscommunication and Best Buy went out of their way to accommodate a refund. Maybe I’m just reading too far between the lines but it seems like he thought “refund” was synonymous with “cash”.

        • eyesack is the boss of the DEFAMATION ZONE says:

          Yep. Sneak a chargeback in there at the right time, or the fact that businesses don’t like to pay the role of your rich cousin, and you quickly see why most stores won’t give you cash unless that was the original method of payment.

      • moyawyvern says:

        I have worked in retail for years, and have never had a gift receipt entitle the returner to getting cash back if that wasn’t how the item was paid for in that way. All a gift receipt does at the stores I have worked at was confirm what the original price paid was, ensuring that if the item was now on sale, the returner would get the higher price either in exchange or on a gift card.

      • eyesack is the boss of the DEFAMATION ZONE says:

        Every place I’ve worked retail for had a policy against giving cash out unless that was the method of payment (I think we made an exception for checks under $50 or something if it had been longer than x days.) Credit card companies, at a minimum, frown on it, and there are many ways to defraud the store or the credit card company.

        I don’t see why he wouldn’t be able to get store credit, though.

    • Crymansqua says:

      “I blame the customer here mostly. Best Buy gets crap cause they didn’t warn him how the purchase was made.”

      So who are you blaming?

      • bnceo says:

        Notice I said MOSTLY. Best Buy gets some blame for not informing the customer of the rules.

        Do you seriously think you deserve cash for a purchase made on a credit card? That’s lunacy.

        • milkcake says:

          Um, but not getting nothing for returning something is crazier. And what the heck is the point of having gift receipt if they just going to give a hard time. I don’t see the OP’s fault at all here. Give an exchange, give a credit, or give gift card. So many options.

    • Nuc says:

      Not all retailers do this…Wal-Mart gave me a choice of cash or back to the card that paid for the gift.

    • Liam Kinkaid says:

      Here’s the problem. He walked in with his property. He had a gift receipt for his property, proving that it was his and that it was purchased from Best Buy. Best Buy waved their hands, magic happened, and suddenly the guy doesn’t have his property anymore.

      Normally, in that “magic happened” part, where one party removes another party’s property, we call it theft. Best Buy took something from the OP (the car dock) and gave him nothing in return. The fact that they gave money to an uninvolved third party (the mother-in-law) is irrelevant. They stole his property. That is the problem here.

      Whether he should have gotten cash or a gift card is another story. I believe their policy is for the purchase price to be returned on a gift card, but, seeing as that part didn’t happen, it too is irrelevant.

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        Anyone who reads this and still doesn’t understand or agree is probably beyond hope.

        • TheUncleBob says:

          I can’t comment on the gift receipt thing (makes no sense to me), but as far as returning the money to the credit card – totally understand. It’s clearly stated in Best Buy’s return policy.

          • Tyanna says:

            You sir, are beyond hope. Please continue shopping at Best Buy.

          • Liam Kinkaid says:

            If you don’t understand how gift receipts work, that’s another story altogether, and your confusion is totally understandable. Say I kinda know what you want, but I’m not exactly sure. Maybe you’ll just hate what I get you. Anyway, I want to show that I’m putting in at least a little effort to get you something you’ll like, but I want to give you the freedom to exchange it for something you’ll really like in case I’m off base with my selection. When I check out at the store, I ask for a gift receipt. This is just like a regular receipt, but it doesn’t show the price on it (because that’s considered tacky). So, I give you the gift and the gift receipt, just in case you need to exchange it for something else at the store.

            • TheUncleBob says:

              No, no… I get how gift receipts are supposed to work. I merely meant I don’t understand what the issue with the gift receipt at this Best Buy was in this particular case. :D

              The refunding of the purchase price to the credit card is all I was really commenting on.

        • Such an Interesting Monster says:

          I guess then I’m beyond hope. The issue is very simple and clear. If you ask for a refund, and the item was purchased with a credit card it’s going to get sent back to the CC even if you have a gift receipt. End of story. You may not like it, but that’s just the way it is. Allowing someone to get cash for a return on a CC purchase violates merchant rules as it’s basically a free cash advance and a HUGE no-no. So you can parade your gift receipt up and down till doomsday and scream theft at the top of your lungs till you’re hoarse, but you’re still NEVER going to get cash.

          The best the OP was going to get was store credit, and it doesn’t seem as though that’s what he wanted or even asked for.

          Why people can’t seem to understand this basic rule of credit cards is beyond me.

      • Jawaka says:

        Crediting the card used during the original purchase is the way that it’s done everywhere. You can’t give cash back otherwise the credit card companies would go crazy over the interest free cash advances. The OP may have been able to talk Best Buy into a gift card HAD HE ASKED FOR ONE IN ADVANCE. While I agree that there’s an inconvenience to the customer here I don’t blame Best Buy.

        • Liam Kinkaid says:

          So what you’re saying is that the OP, who may do one or two gift returns/exchanges a year should know to ask for a gift card when handing Best Buy a piece of merchandise and a gift receipt, when the average Best Buy Customer Service counter worker does hundreds to thousands of gift returns every year?

          This situation would be no different than if he returned something he bought and Best Buy gave the refund to someone else. Who purchased it makes no matter. The car dock was his property walking in. He should have had either the car dock or a gift card with the refunded amount walking out.

          • Jawaka says:

            Um yes I am. Any smart consumer should know the return policy of a company before they return something to them. Hell, I’ve returned things to Best Buy before and their return line is anything but fast. After Christmas it had to have been a 15-20 minute wait. Was he purposely ignoring the huge return policy sign in front of him as he waited? Besides, If this consumer knew enough to post to Consumerist about this then he should have known enough to read the return policy.

        • Difdi says:

          Just because everybody steals something doesn’t make it okay or legal.

      • consumeristjohnny says:

        Actually you are WRONG. The property belonged to the mother in law who PAID for it. Now he could argue the case against the mother in law, but BBuy did what was asked of them. A CASH REFUND. Your stupidity would mean if I walk into a Best Buy with a TV I stole after you bought it with a credit card, Best Buy would be REQUIRED to hand me CASH for it. The BBuy policy was agreed upon by the PURCHASER (mother in law). He has no right to change the terms of that transaction.
        I would suggest you tell us all where your law degree is from and ANY case where you won a case with this fact set. I am guessing you aren’t a lawyer and don’t know what the fuck you are talking about. If you are, you should be disbarred.

        • proptart says:

          Are you a lawyer? I hope not, but if you are, I suggest checking your 1L property notes. Once MIL gave it as a gift, it legally became the OP’s property. The contract with Best Buy is a different matter, but you are wrong in equating a gift with stolen property.

          • consumeristjohnny says:

            And he GAVE the property to Best Buy (they did not TAKE anything). They did not coerce him into bringing it into the store, They did not force him to leave without it. They said we will put it on the ORIGINAL form of payment PERIOD. He AGREED to that.
            I’ll wait for your law degree credentials and your case law that says what they did is illegal. I won;t hold my breath because you are talking out of your ass and dont know what the hell you are talking about.

            • jedifarfy says:

              Ok, I’m confused by the article you were reading. OP went in to get cash back on his gift. BB said no. Then BB said he needed the original receipt, and they could print it. So they did. Then they returned it in the original form. That would be great except the IGNORED the entire part about it being a gift.

              In the real work of retail, you usually can not give cash back for a gift receipt. You CAN however offer a gift card. BB offered nothing that worked and did it anyways.

            • Dalsnsetters says:

              OMG. He received it as a gift. It was his to do with what he wanted. In this case, he wanted to return it and get a refund, hence the gift receipt. The only reason he GAVE it to BBY was to get something else (cash) in exchange.

              Don’t be an idiot. He didn’t give it to BBY as a gift. He wanted to exchange it for cash. It probably would have been easier if he had exchanged it for a RAZR dock, but he didn’t.

              IANAL, but you only have to watch three or four episodes of People’s Court to know that you, consumeristjohnny, are wrong. Dead wrong. YOU, sir, are the one talking out of your ass.

        • Conformist138 says:

          No. It was given as a gift, so ownership transferred. It’s basically a legal way of saying “No take-backsies!” Just ask any man who gave an ex-gf expensive jewelry. Once you give it, it’s gone.

    • Kestris says:

      You seem to have missed the part where it was a gift. Hence the gift receipt, which apparently is useless when it comes to Best Buy.

      The OP should either have gotten an exchange or possibly store credit. THat way, the original gifter (the MiL in this case) would not have had the money returned and the giftee would not have to go through the embaressment of having to ask for their gift money.

    • There's room to move as a fry cook says:

      http://consumerist.com/2007/12/how-to-get-cash-from-best-buy-with-only-a-gift-receipt.html

      How To Get Cash From Best Buy With Only A Gift Receipt
      Consumerist 2007
      * Before you do anything else, ensure that the person that bought you the gift paid with cash, debit card, or a check. The amount has to be under something like 150 dollars, otherwise Best Buy corporate will issue a refund check. If they paid with a credit card, you’re out of luck, the money will go back on the card.

    • Harvey The Wonder Hamster says:

      There are, at most, three failures here: 2 big failures and 1 minor failure. And the minor failure is questionable.

      Large Failure 1) Best Buy was unable to process the return with a gift receipt. That’s a broken system no matter how you slice it.

      Large Failure 2) Best Buy should have offered the OP a store credit / gift card. From the OP’s description, they didn’t and instead automatically processed the refund to the CC (hence his surprise).

      Possible Minor Failure) OP may have expected cash back, which doesn’t happen with CC purchases. We can’t be sure of this, the OP doesn’t say he expected cash back and may well have been happy with a store credit / gift card if he’d been asked.

      So we have 2 large failures by Best Buy and one small, possible failure by the OP… and yet you pin almost all the blame on the OP?

      • consumeristjohnny says:

        You do not know the answer to any of those questions as well. Did BBuy offer him an even exchange (they generally would and do)? Did he say I want a REFUND? A refund is not an exchange. Without the ORIGINAL receipt there would be no refund. It will be an exchange. It sounds more like the OP expected BBuy to give him cash back for something his MiLaw purchased for him. That is tacky and not the intent of gift receipts, Maybe next time tell him mother in law, just give me cash

        • elangomatt says:

          The OP said he wanted to return it for CASH, so yes he wanted a refund.

          • rdm says:

            I don’t understand why that’s a problem. The receipt proves someone bought it…

            • MECmouse says:

              I worked for a retailer a LONG time ago (over 25 years) and we never gave cash back for any CC purchases because credit cards get stolen and big purchases are made and then returned for cash. It’s to protect the CC customers.

    • TheGreySpectre says:

      Agreed, I thought this was a fairly standard return policy between most retailers. You need the original reciept to get anything other then a gift card and if the purchase was made via credit/debit card they just put the money back on the card.

  2. clippy2.0 says:

    I had this happen to me recently as well. The best buy CSR explained that bestbuy had implemented a new system for Bestbuy.com, which handled returns differently, cutting down the return process to assume any item brought in from the website to be returned directly to the card; I assume this is in response to thefts of bestbuy.com packages. It will no doubt create a large amount of headache for customers and bestbuy employees over the next few weeks. I had to exchange an xbox, hdmi cable, and 2 games for gift cards. Lost the credit for the hdmi cable, and the whole process required a manager and almost 30 minutes. For a simple return with receipts.

    • Dallas_shopper says:

      Crap like this is why I won’t shop at Best Buy anymore; life is already aggravating enough.

      • BurtReynolds says:

        Yes. I bought some iTunes gift cards for in-store pickup that managed to be a hassle this year. Let alone the time I returned something. 3 weeks, nearly 7 hours on the phone to get $11.45 credited to my card after BB’s ordering system messed something up.

  3. seth_lerman says:

    Um, best Buy didn’t screw anything up here. Almost all retailers process returns either to a gift cardstore credit (appropriate for this scenario) or back to the original form of payment. On what planet are you from thinking you can get cash back for something that was bought via a credit card?

    Yes, this is blame the OP time…

    • Rebecca K-S says:

      You’re right that the OP was wrong to expect cash if it was a CC purchase, but you’re absolutely wrong that he shouldn’t have expected the credit to go to him in some form (presumably store credit/gift card).

      • pecan 3.14159265 says:

        Yeah, so I think there is an even split in blame here. OP shouldn’t have expected cash for his return and the store shouldn’t have returned the money to the OP’s mother in law.

        If stores allowed people to return things for cash back, and not say, store credit or just a return, people would be returning a lot of gifts to get cash.

        • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

          It’s not split blame. The OP might have wanted/expected cash instead of a gift card, but he got neither.

          If this article was about how BBY gave him a gift card instead of cash for the return, then it would be split blame. Since he return merchandise and left with absolutely nothing, it’s 100% BBY blame here.

          Expectations /= Results

          • pecan 3.14159265 says:

            No, he received a gift and did not purchase it himself. He’s not entitled to cash back, only store credit or a gift card (basically the same thing). He shouldn’t have expected cash back (and maybe he expected store credit, but he should have written “store credit” and not “cash” in his email). There’s the OP’s side of the blame. Best Buy should have given him store credit instead of a refund to the mother in law’s credit card.

            It actually looks to me like Best Buy didn’t think he was returning a gift, but was instead returning something he purchased for someone else and the only receipt he had left from the original transaction was the gift receipt. That’s why I think Best Buy told him it could print the original receipt. You don’t do that unless you think the OP is returning something he purchased.

            • longdvsn says:

              If the OP had received a gift card and was still complaining – it’s 100% OP’s fault because that’s just unreasonable.

              Here, he received nothing – BB is 100% to blame for not clarifying with the OP how the return should be done – which should have resulted in a gift card. I guess if the OP didn’t try to clarify his intentions, I’ll give him a small fraction of the responsibility – but it’s still largely on BB to identify the situation and communicate with customers.

      • seth_lerman says:

        The issue started when the OP wanted a REFUND instead of a credit. Had they just processed the return via the gift receipt it would have automatically been done via a gift card which would have been in the OPs hand.

    • misterfweem says:

      Yup. This is SOP for any retailer. If you buy an item with a credit card, the refund goes on that credit card, not out as cash in hand.

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      Not true at all. Retailers often give back to the person holding the merchandise, not on the original card unless requested.

    • K-Bo says:

      When I worked in retail and we had a situation like this we gave them store credit, so they could use it. Sending it back to the original purchaser makes no sense on a gift.

      • Back to waiting, but I did get a cute dragon ear cuff says:

        OP asked for a refund, not a store credit. They processed the refund to original form of payment.

        • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

          I’m guessing he thought “refund” meant the same thing as “cash”. The fact that BB went through a rigamarole to issue a refund, it at least seems like he probably insisted on it without understanding what it entailed.

        • MMD says:

          Which they should never have done, since he presented them with a gift receipt.

    • Martha Gail says:

      I’d say not entirely to blame. We had the rule, at the sporting goods store I worked at for 9 years, that the refund just had to go back to the same type of original payment. So cash, debit or checks got cash back or a gift card if they wanted and credit card went back on a credit card or gift card. It didn’t necessarily have to be the original credit card, although that was what we preferred.

      Sometimes it was a gift situation, sometimes it was a situation where one spouse bought it and the other returned it, sometimes people’s cards were stolen and they had a new card.

    • balderdashed says:

      It doesn’t matter what Best Buy’s (or any other retailer’s) policy is — they cannot refund the price of an item purchased as a gift to the original purchaser, and take possession of that item, if it is now the property of a third party who does not agree. It doesn’t even matter if the original purchaser agreed that any refund would be credited back to the original form of payment — once the item is given as a gift, it becomes the property of the giftee, who is not bound by any such agreement.

    • Harvey The Wonder Hamster says:

      Then why didn’t they offer the OP a store credit/gift card?

      • Bsamm09 says:

        I bet he was. The second paragraph starts by leaving out what happened when he arrived, explained the situation for the first time and why the gift receipt wasn’t good enough. I bet during this time, he was told he could get a gift card but wanted cash.

        It just seems like he is intentionally leaving out the initial conversation. He may not have. I can’t blame anyone until the story is clarified.

      • Jawaka says:

        Why didn’t the customer ASK for a gift card?

  4. Frankz says:

    This happened exactly the way it’s supposed to happen, and the exact same way almost every other retailer does it: credit card purchases almost NEVER get refunded in cash, by anyone, and will get refunded either to the cc it was purchased with or to a store credit.
    This is normal, EVERYWHERE!!!

    • MMD says:

      Show me in the story where the OP was given the option for a store credit. I’ll wait,

      • RueLaLaLa says:

        In the story, the OP wanted CASH, not a store credit.

      • Frankz says:

        He specifically asked for a refund, and he even says that in his post.
        There was no need for store to offer a store credit or gift card, since he asked for a refund.
        The store refunded it, just like he asked.

    • cromartie says:

      You have a reading comprehension issue. It was a gift. He had a gift receipt. He was entitled to store credit as a result because it was a gift.

      The person behind the counter wasn’t bright enough to figure this out. Instead, he/she thought the person was the giver of the gift, rather than the receipient, and as such they refunded the purchase to the original purchaser instead.

      Reading comprehension. You are bad at it.

    • Freya83 says:

      I disagree. Because he had a gift receipt, there was no way for the OP to know how MIL paid for the gift. Also, it doesn’t say they handed him the copy receipt until after the refund, so again, how would he have known how she paid for the item? While I do agree that perhaps the OP was a little naive to think he would get cash for this transaction, he did make quite clear to the clerk that this was a gift being returned. And we’re in that time of year where gift returns are common. They should have been able to use the gift receipt, and give him a gift card.

      Also, as soon as the OP said, “WHOA WAIT A MINUTE”, they should have done a post-void on the transaction (void a finished transaction, usually within a matter of minutes, and it never actually happened as far as the POS system is concerned). Yes, a manager would need to be involved, but they could have undone the credit/refund, and started over again if necessary. I don’t know any retailer that can’t do that.

  5. Rebecca K-S says:

    Normally I’m pretty eager to jump on the “blame the OP” train, and I agree that Todd was foolish to think he’d get cash (unless it was bought with cash), but I’m absolutely boggled by the people who think sending the money back to MIL’s card was the right move.

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      Amen, these people are nuts.

    • tbax929 says:

      Some people aren’t happy unless they’re blaming the OP. Here’s what should have happened. The BB employee should have advised the OP that when they processed the return they’d have to either put it on a gift card or back to the original card with which it was purchased.

      To not tell the OP that’s what they were doing before they refunded the money back to the card makes this solely Best Buy’s fault.

    • valueofaloonie says:

      Me three! I don’t understand where these people are coming from.

      It’s exactly the same as the TV Best Buy thread a week or two ago, which also boggled my mind.

    • katarzyna says:

      Agreed. This is baffling.

    • Fineous K. Douchenstein says:

      Just because it’s the right move from the store’s point of view, being the best way to limit abuse, that doesn’t mean it’s the right move from the customer’s point of view. The OP should have taken store credit and enjoyed something else, and said it was the thought that counted.

    • DrPizza says:

      So, you’re saying that I should be able to purchase a “gift” using a credit card, walk out of the store, turn around and walk back into the store, and “yeah, my brother bought this for me, it’s the wrong size. I have the gift receipt. Give me cash!”

      Also, it’s why many stores used to have policies of no cash exchanges within x-number of days if you paid by check. You had to wait until the check cleared before they’d give you cash back, else you got store credit.

      • Rebecca K-S says:

        Yes, that’s exactly what I meant when I said “Todd was foolish to think he’d get cash.”

      • MMD says:

        Re-read your last sentence. They refunded the purchaser’s card without offering store credit. On what planet is that ok?

        • Jawaka says:

          …according to the OP.

          Keep in mind that this is only the OPs side of the story but of course customers are infallible and never bend the truth.

          • MMD says:

            So I suppose the OP was lying about presenting a GIFT RECEIPT at the beginning of the transaction? Unless the OP specifically requested the refund go on the purchaser’s card, this should not have happened, based on the presence of the GIFT RECEIPT.

            The OP may well be fallible, but so is your logic in trying to defend what happened here, based on the information we’ve been presented with.

  6. FrugalFreak says:

    Majority stores are doing this. American Eagle, Kohls, Dicks

    • FrugalFreak says:

      I think they are doing this to combat online purchasing in favor of store shopping(higher prices in store) can’t buy with cash online and that can be the only way to buy a gift now.

      • MMD says:

        You are 100% wrong. I got a gift from Dicks and they gave me *store credit*. They did not refund the purchaser’s card because it was a gift. To me. Which is the point of a gift receipt.

    • Gorbachev says:

      They are?

      So if I walk in with a gift receipt, and ask for a refund, the standard procedure is to refund the money to whoever bought the gift?

      Really?

      • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

        Yes, the choice is typically between a refund (based on the original type of purchase) or store credit/exchange.

      • Liam Kinkaid says:

        Absolutely. And, if you walk in with the original receipt, they give the refund to your employer, because they’re the entity you got the money from in order to buy the item.

      • Jawaka says:

        Really!

        But again, if you ask for a gift card FIRST and not just say that you want to return it you may get different results.

  7. ovalseven says:

    If people could make credit card purchases then use gift receipts to get cash back, wouldn’t people abuse this setup to get low-interest cash advances on their credit cards?

    • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

      That was exactly my thought. It’s fairly common for credit cards to charge a higher APR for cash advances, in addition to a 3 or 4% processing fee. If you could buy an appliance or TV on a credit card and immediately return it for cash, you could bypass the additional fees.

      It would also be a handy way of getting large amounts of cash from a stolen credit card.

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        So give store credit to the owner of the merchandise, namely the returner.

    • ovalseven says:

      And just so it’s clear… I’m not blaming the OP. Best Buy should have offered a gift card or an exchange. I was just thinking about reasons for not giving cash back.

  8. Back to waiting, but I did get a cute dragon ear cuff says:

    AFAIK, EVERY store refunds the way an item was paid. Yes, it is not what the OP wanted, but it is how things work.

    Wasn’t there a similar story here about a week ago?

    • lakecountrydave says:

      But you seem to be missing an important part of the story. The item purchased was given as a gift. This was made obvious to Best Buy via the gift receipt. Once a gift is given 100% of the ownership rights of the item transfer to the gift recipient. The gift giver (in this case the MIL) no longer holds any rights to the item. He brought the item into Best Buy and attempted to return the item. Best Buy took the item, and did not give him consideration for his property. This is theft. The fact that they credited the gift givers credit card is inconsequential. That is a matter between Best Buy and the MIL who again no longer had any rights regarding the item.

      • lakecountrydave says:

        Also, just because it is store policy to do something has no impact on weather that action is legal or not.

        GIFT, contracts. The act by which the owner of a thing, voluntarily transfers the title and possession of the same, from himself to another person who accepts it, without any consideration. It differs from a grant, sale, or barter in this, that in each of these cases there must be a consideration, and a gift, as the @definitionstates, must be without consideration.
        2. The manner of making the gift may be in writing, or verbally, and, as far as personal chattels are concerned, they are equally binding. Perk. Sec. 57; 2 Bl. Com. 441. But real estate must be transferred by deed.
        3. There must be a transfer made with an intention of passing the title, and delivering the possession of the thing given, and it must be accepted by the donee. 1 Madd. Ch. R. 176, Am. ed. p. 104; sed vide 2 Barn. & Ald. 551; Noy’s Rep. 67.
        4. The transfer must be without consideration, for if there be the least consideration, it will change the contract into a sale or barter, if possession be delivered; or if not, into an executory contract. 2 Bl. Com. 440.
        5. Gifts are divided into gifts inter vivos, and gifts causa mortis; and also’ into simple or proper gifts; that is, such as are to take immediate effect, without any condition; and qualified or improper gifts, or such as derive their force upon the happening, of some condition or contingency; as, for example, a donatio causa mortis. Vide Donatio causa mortis; Gifts inter vivos; and Vin. Ab. h. t.; Com. Dig. Biens, D 2, and Grant; Bac. Ab. Grant; 14 Vin. Ab. 19 3 M. & S. 7 5 Taunt. 212 1 Miles, R. 109.

        http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/gift

        IANAL

  9. Rachacha says:

    “It’s impossible (I hope) to blame Todd…”

    Had the OP not married his wife, he would not have had a MiL to purchase him the wrong dock, therefore, it is the OP’s fault for getting married to a girl whose mother would purchase him the worng gift.

    Blaming the OP was actually pretty easy :-)

    • Mike says:

      Not fair. If people based their marriage decision on their future mothers-in-law, no one would ever get married.

  10. Extended-Warranty says:

    Who doesn’t know that gift receipts get you a store credit? That’s common knowledge.

    • Liam Kinkaid says:

      Apparently Best Buy didn’t know this. OP had a gift receipt but BB refunded the original purchaser’s credit card. Which makes no sense on a gift receipt.

    • everythingisungodly says:

      This is what I thought upon reading the story, too. There’s too little detail to figure out what happened – did they offer him store credit, and he refused, thus leading to them telling him he’d need the original receipt? That’s the only scenario that really makes sense to me. Since he’d have no way of knowing how his MIL payed for the dock originally, it would have then been on Best Buy’s shoulders to explain to him that cash back simply wasn’t an option on a credit card purchase – which I assume is part of their return policy, although it’s not spelled out very clearly on their website (“refunds will generally be in same the form as the original payment”). Best Buy is clearly at fault for this, if things played out as the OP described. However, I’m curious about what he might have said that led them to this point in the first place.

      (As a sidenote: Best Buy’s return policy does not mention gift receipts specifically, which seems like an important omission, especially when paired with the unclear part about refund forms. Although I think it’s generally understood that gift receipt = gift card, they should really spell it out to cover themselves.)

  11. Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

    What’s the point of a gift receipt if it return the money to the giver rather than receiver?

    I think people here don’t understand what a gift receipt is or what it’s used for.

    Gift-givers don’t give gift receipts to get their money back, they give it so the received can return the item due to damage or because it’s the wrong size/type.

    Not. To. Get. Their. Money. Back.

    • icruise says:

      Exactly. He has a gift receipt. That means that he gets something from returning the item. If they can’t do cash, make it a gift card. There are LOTS of situations where this situation would have been a lot more awkward, such as when you don’t want the gift giver to know you returned the item, or when you can’t easily get in contact with them.

    • FatLynn says:

      I think there is not enough detail. I suspect they offered him a store credit with the gift receipt, and when he demanded cash, they said they needed the real receipt. They then f***ed up that transaction, putting it back on the CC, but I still think that the gift receipt/store credit thing could have happened with no issue.

  12. FilthyHarry says:

    This is why I don’t feel bad using Best Buy just to look at items, then buy them online someplace else.

  13. Swins says:

    The op is an idiot. Not one retailer I know of gives cash back on a gift receipt to the person bringing in the gift. Credit card fraud would rampant, steal a cc, buy some things, then return them and get cash. Come on, get a gift card or swap for something in store.

    • Bionic Data Drop says:

      Exactly this.

      I’ve read so many complaints since the holidays about stores giving a gift card instead of cash back for items returned with a gift receipt. I completely understand his disappointment when not offered a gift card, but he should’ve known damn well he wasn’t going to walk out of the store with cash. Besides, IMHO trying to turn a Christmas gift into cash is pretty tasteless. Why not just ask for cash next year for Christmas?

  14. Swins says:

    The op is an idiot. Not one retailer I know of gives cash back on a gift receipt to the person bringing in the gift. Credit card fraud would rampant, steal a cc, buy some things, then return them and get cash. Come on, get a gift card or swap for something in store.

    • MMD says:

      Dd you miss the part where the OP was not given a store credit option? Yes. Yes, you did.

      • bonzombiekitty says:

        Um, that was not mentioned anywhere I can see in the OP. Nothing says he was denied the option of a gift card. Nothing about a gift card was mentioned.

        • ovalseven says:

          Nothing says he was offered the option of a gift card either. I think Best Buy should at least do that before silently crediting the money back to the purchaser.

        • MMD says:

          Exactly. They refunded the purchaser’s card without asking the OP if that’s what he wanted.

          You don’t think that’s a problem? Is that how you’d want it to go down if someone had given you a gift from Best Buy that you couldn’t use?

  15. MMD says:

    PEOPLE!

    Did you all miss the part where the OP was *not given the option* of a gift card?

    And the part where the gift receipt was found to be inadequate?

    RTFA! PLEASE!

    • everythingisungodly says:

      I don’t see anything in his story that he was denied the option of a gift card. Now that I read it more carefully, I do see that he went to “return it for cash,” which I suspect is the problem. Although their return policy is a little unclear on this, I suspect that, like most retailers, they won’t process cash back on credit card purchases due to risk of fraud. (Anyone could pick up a discarded receipt, pick up the item off the shelf, and demand to “return” it.)

      • MMD says:

        From the article: “They then finished the transaction and handed me a reciept and no money, and stated that they put the money back onto the American Express card used in the purchase, which isn’t my card.”

        If this is the way it went down, the OP was never asked if he wanted store credit.

        • Bsamm09 says:

          From the article:

          “I went into Best Buy to return it for cash. I had the gift reciept and everything should have just worked out.
          When I got there they said I would need the original receipt and not the gift receipt. Needless to say, I didn’t have it.”

          I bet the OP is leaving a lot out. I bet he went there and talked to more than one person since OP says “they” and that he had to explain the story again (probably to the 2nd person he dealt with). During these discussions, the person who finally processed the refund made the mistake and put it back on the card.

          Something like: OP went in there and the first person he spoke with told him he couldn’t get cash but could get a gift card. He said no and BBY employee said it would be possible if the original purchaser paid cash but the OP didn’t have the receipt to prove this. OP asks for manager and finds out they can print a copy of original receipt. Person who prints this is told OP wants to make a return and the employee does so. Mistakenly on the MIL credit card.

          • MMD says:

            The latter half of your response illustrates BB’s incompetence. And you admit that they mistakenly put the money back on the MIL’s card. So even if the OP left something out, BB is still to blame in your scenario.

            • Bsamm09 says:

              I never said they weren’t. BBY messed up. I just doubt that they never mentioned a gift card. I bet they did. OP wanted cash and that’s why the whole original receipt was needed to see how original transaction went down. During this time, BBY refunded to amount to the card.

              • MMD says:

                Maybe they did, maybe they didn’t, I guess…we can only go off of what we have.

                But he comes off as surprised at not receiving money, which means that Best Buy didn’t adequately explain to him why he wasn’t receiving money. If they were going to just go ahead and credit the MIL’s card, he should have been explicitly asked first. They clearly didn’t do that, because if he’d agreed to having her card refunded, he’d have no reason to write in.

                Ultimately, I just can’t believe how many people above think BB didn’t screw up here.

                • consumeristjohnny says:

                  Other than he had an axe to grind with BBuy from the start.
                  “Best Buy screws it up once again. This is why I tell everyone I know not to shop there.”

                  When you go in with an attitude you deserve to get your dick slapped. I hope his mother in law realizes her daughter married a douche bag

    • fantomesq says:

      No, the gift receipt was insufficient FOR WHAT THE OP WAS ASKING FOR which was cash back. For cash back, they required the original receipt, which is why they needed to print one. The OP -AND- the cashier basically sidestepped the protections the store had setup to avoid just this sort of mess. If he had returned by gift receipt, he would have gotten store credit (as is reasonable). The option of returning to the credit card was only available if he returned by the original receipt (which only the purchaser is likely to have). So yes, shared fault here.

      • ovalseven says:

        You can get cash back with a gift receipt if the purchaser paid in cash. Asking for a cash refund when you have a receipt is not unreasonable when you don’t know the original method of payment.

      • MMD says:

        I didn’t say the OP should have gotten cash back. I get why he didn’t. But it’s on the cashier to explain the policy adequately and inform him of his options. That didn’t happen here.

        • consumeristjohnny says:

          ” I went into Best Buy to return it for cash”

          This is EXACTLY from the OP’s post. What part of that don’t you understand? He OBVIOUSLY wanted CASH. He says so. A gift receipt is not adequate for that, UNLESS the gift giver paid in cash. Best Buy and any retailer will only give back money based on payment method.
          This is 100% on the OP.

          • MMD says:

            What part of “gift receipt” do you not understand?

            When you walk in with a gift receipt, you *get something back* when you return the item. He got nothing back because the MIL’s card was refunded without his explicit consent.

            Unless the OP *specifically* asked for the charge to be refunded to the MIL’s card, BB is absolutely in the wrong for handling the transaction this way.

  16. kathygnome says:

    The problem here is not that the refund went to the card, the problem was it was not explained that the refund would go to the card.

    • MMD says:

      And that apparently no other options were offered.
      And that the cashier missed the concept of a gift receipt.

  17. balderdashed says:

    Exactly — they stole his property. It doesn’t matter if they decided to issue a credit for the amount of the original purchase to his mother, or to one of the Kardashians. He never agreed to surrender his property, and he should have demanded it back. So actually, I do blame the OP — as I would have called the police. (And, even if I had not prevailed when the cops showed up, it would have potentially been a bigger news story, that would alerted more people to the perils of doing business with Best Buy.)

    • fantomesq says:

      That happened in an earlier story here where a customer returned a tv to Best Buy. The gift was returned to the original purchaser’s card and the customer called the cops. The cops sided with Best Buy on the theft issue (most likely lack of intent). This still leaves them open to a civil conversion charge but since its civil, not criminal, the cops won’t get involved.

    • consumeristjohnny says:

      No, by his OWN admission the OP ASKED FOR CASH. RTFA!!!

      He got returned EXACTLY what he asked for. This would not be criminal, nor would it be a case in civil court. If the Kardashians were the ones who PAID for it then it goes on their card. If not, too bad so sad.

      • balderdashed says:

        I read the article. And I frankly don’t see any way around the following facts:

        Customer walked into Best Buy with a car phone dock. It was his property — doesn’t matter if Best Buy owned it once, or his mother in law owned it once, or who bought or owned it previously (unless we’re dealing with stolen property – no indication of that). It was given to him as a gift; it now belonged to him.

        He asked Best Buy to give him cash in exchange for this property. I agree that his request may have been unrealistic, and Best Buy probably had no obligation to honor it. And if Best Buy’s policy at the time the merchandise was originally sold was that it would not provide cash (or even any form of store credit) to anyone other than the original purchaser, so be it.

        In this scenario, it would have been perfectly proper for Best Buy to take back the product, and credit the mother in law — but only with the OP’s consent. But that’s not what happened.The Customer never gave his consent to allow Best Buy to take possession of his property and credit the mother in law. He was totally surprised at this outcome.

        So the customer hardly got what he asked for — cash in his pocket in exchange for the merchandise — nor, I’d suggest, was he entitled to what he asked for. In fact, it’s possible that Best Buy could have told him to go screw himself, or ordered him off the premises, or done any number of things. But what they can’t do is take possession of his phone dock, and issue a credit to anyone — even to him — unless he agrees. There is no way around the fact that it was still the OP’s property, and he had every right to walk out the door with it and sell it on Ebay if that was his preference.

  18. The_IT_Crone says:

    When you return something, it gets returned in the same form it was paid. In every store I’ve ever worked/shopped in. The purpose of a gift receipt is not to change that fact, but to allow you to exchange it for something.

    The only other thing you could have done was ask for a Gift Card. That’s it.

    • cromartie says:

      Maybe less getting hung up on the cash part and more digging to the point of the article, which is that BB didn’t offer the guy a store credit, which is, or should be, the SOP with the gift receipt.

      • bonzombiekitty says:

        How do we know if the store didn’t offer a gift card? The OP says that he went in to return it for cash. Nothing is mentioned at all about a gift card or store credit – just that he wanted to exchange it for cash.

        • MMD says:

          The OP comes off as surprised that they refunded it to the purchaser’s card. He was also surprised at not receiving money. This means BB didn’t explain things adequately.

  19. BennieHannah says:

    I agree that the OP should have received a store credit on a gift receipt. I actually don’t understand why giving a store credit isn’t the default rather than refunding it to the original purchaser’s credit card. It seems to me that the refund to the purchaser’s credit card should be a last/reluctant option. When they do a refund, the store makes no money at all. If they issue a store credit, there’s always the chance that the person using the credit will spend MORE than the amount of the credit. In fact, I’d bet that happens more often than not with store credits.

  20. MJDickPhoto says:

    >>”to return it for cash.”

    there is the start. do a direct exchange. hate to say it, but IMHO, it’s OP not BB.

  21. SmokeyBacon says:

    Ok I think the problem here is that there is a LOT of information we don’t have so it is tough to make a call:

    1) Did the OP specifically ask for a cash refund? Did Best Buy explain why that couldn’t happen?
    2) Why did Best Buy refuse the gift receipt and require the original receipt – the only reason I can think of is that he specifically asked for a cash refund and they have to do a “refund” (not a credit or gift card) on the original type of purchase – otherwise they should have accepted the gift receipt (but of course we don’t know this part)
    3) Was the OP told that he could get store credit or did they just take his statement of refund and go with it? If not then the store is at fault for this part of it because it was obviously a gift (hence the gift receipt) and so if it had to be store credit or return to the purchasers card (not cash back as he requested) he should have been given those options. IF they did and he refused both, then it is his own fault. If he wasn’t aware those were his only options then it is Best Buy’s fault for not informing him correctly.

    And while it has been a while since I did any returns, I have to say that there have been times I wanted an item returned to my card and they just gave me cash (not at Best Buy – at Target actually) – they just hand me the cash and I am like “don’t you put it back on the card” and they would tell me that no, for small amounts they don’t (that may have changed, and my guess is because they have to pay a transaction fee on everything, even small returns, but I am not sure).

  22. samonela says:

    This is simple.

    His mother-in-law obviously hates him.

  23. TheBigWhiteWolf says:

    Who is the idiot?

    A.) Customer who would not accept “Sir, we cannot refund you cash without the original receipt. Would you like store credit instead?”

    B.) Cashier who would not say “Sir, we cannot refund you cash without the original receipt. Would you like store credit instead?”

  24. Velvet Jones says:

    Skipping the Best Buy idiocy for a second, there is one frightening thing that no one has mentioned. Why is Best Buy storing the CC info related to the purchase and where are they storing it? In order to credit the amount back to the AMEX account without having the card that means BB stored the CC number somewhere in their system. That is a frightening thought. Whenever I have ever gotten credit before I was always asked for my card. If BB is saving this info even for in store purchases gives me yet another reason to NEVER shop at BB again.

    • bonzombiekitty says:

      They aren’t necessarily storing the credit card number. They could just be storing a transaction number. All they may have to do is just send a request to the card processor to reverse that transaction number.

      • Velvet Jones says:

        I haven’t worked in retail in decades, but if that is the case then I would feel slightly better. I just got a refund a Home Depot last week on a CC. They asked me for the card and swiped it to charge back.

        • cromartie says:

          I had a good friend once lose everything, and I mean everything, in a house fire.

          He was also a loyal Best Buy customer. He walked in, handed him his credit card and said,
          “I’d like a receipt of everything I purchased on this card for insurance purposes.”

          It took about 90 minutes, but BB had duplicates for everything he purchased for them, going back to 1998.

      • orion70 says:

        I admit I’m a bit confused on that one myself. Even if it was just a transaction number, and the original purchaser was going to be gaining money back, wouldn’t they themselves still have to authorize it somehow? I’d assume it’s not the same as someone going into a bank and saying they want to deposit $ into someone else’s account (if you can still do that).

        I thought the physical card still had to be swiped, in any event.

    • I Love Christmas says:

      EVERY retailer stores the CC information with the receipt information. Remember, BB knows the receipt number–it’s on the gift receipt–which is in turn attached electronically to the original receipt. By the same token, a retailer can reprint your receipts for any purchases you’ve made with a given cc in their store if you give them the card number. Why do you think it was possible to get VISA and M/C numbers from the TJMaxx database when it was cracked? It wasn’t TJMaxx CC numbers that were taken, it was M/C and VISA numbers. Again, not a BB problem, a retail problem.

  25. bonzombiekitty says:

    It seems to be a bit of a miscommunication. He went looking for a cash refund. The store probably assumed that the item was a gift that the OP had purchased for someone else (otherwise why ask for a cash refund?)- not one that he had received from someone else – and only had a gift receipt. The OP may have requested cash or just a “refund”, either way the clerk thought the OP meant a regular refund – which would mean actual cash if it was purchased with cash or a refund to the original card if it was via purchased via a credit card.

    At this point, I put most of the blame on the OP as I doubt the OP was clear as to what the situation was and had an unreasonable expectation (you can’t expect actual cash refunds for a gift – just store credit or an exchange).

    Once it became apparent of what had happened, Best Buy should have some way of reversing it. But, I don’t know how that would work exactly. And I’d bet the OP actually had to sign something that states “Money will be credited to the account that made the purchase” or to some such similar extent. If he signed something like that, then he’s SOL.

    • There's room to move as a fry cook says:

      The OP had a ‘Gift Receipt’ so there shouldn’t have been any confusion on Best Buy’s part. Unfortunately Gift Receipts don’t work the way gift-givers and gift-receivers expect them to work and Best Buy didn’t communicate that before pushing through the refund.

      • bonzombiekitty says:

        Just because you have a gift receipt, it doesn’t mean you are the recipient of the gift.

        • RandomHookup says:

          But you’ve got a pretty strong presumption going if you do.

        • There's room to move as a fry cook says:

          Then what the fark is the purpose of a gift receipt if not to allow the gift receipt holder to return or exchange the gift?

  26. There's room to move as a fry cook says:

    http://consumerist.com/2007/12/how-to-get-cash-from-best-buy-with-only-a-gift-receipt.html

    How To Get Cash From Best Buy With Only A Gift Receipt
    Consumerist 2007
    * Before you do anything else, ensure that the person that bought you the gift paid with cash, debit card, or a check. The amount has to be under something like 150 dollars, otherwise Best Buy corporate will issue a refund check. If they paid with a credit card, you’re out of luck, the money will go back on the card.

  27. Vereynn says:

    I don’t know of any store that will give cash back on a return for a credit card purchase. The store has to pay a certain (admittedly small) percent of the transaction, and if they don’t put the money back on the original card, they eat that entire fee. Also, this would be a great way to avoid the cash advance fee most cards charge to be used like an ATM.
    The only real issue otherwise that I see is that the store personel should have made sure the gift recipient knew that the refund was going to be made to the original card.
    Gift receipts are to allow exchanges (or store credit)

    • MMD says:

      Apparently, neither of these things were offered.

      • consumeristjohnny says:

        How do you know that? You are assuming facts not in evidence. In fact, the evidence is exactly opposite of that, ” I went into Best Buy to return it for cash.”. He said he wanted a cash refund. he did not say exchange or replacement., He said I want a CASH REFUND. This is how cash refunds are handled. Gift receipt or not. ALL REFUNDS are in the method of payment used. It is really simple. The OP went in with an attitude and deserved to get his ass handed to him. I know this based on this simple statement
        “Now I have to go ask my Mother-in-law for the money. Best Buy screws it up once again. This is why I tell everyone I know not to shop there.”

        1. No you do not have to ask your mother in law for the money
        2. No BB did not screw up (where is the again?)
        3. He tells everyone other than his mother in law

        He is a tool

        • RandomHookup says:

          And you are doing the same.

          Was he ever offered a gift card or told that any refund would only be in the same form as the payment made? Since it was not mentioned, we may have to assume he was not. It’s up to BB to properly inform customers of their policies and, considering he was carrying a gift receipt, they should have understood he wouldn’t know how payment was made.

        • MMD says:

          Everything you said is nullified by the presence of the gift receipt, which was presented at the beginning of the transaction. Once that was presented, BB should have informed the OP of his options. Based on the information presented, they did not do this. And that’s the last comment of yours I’ll respond to, because I’m well aware of your trollhood.

  28. consumeristjohnny says:

    ” I went into Best Buy to return it for cash”
    “Now I have to go ask my Mother-in-law for the money. Best Buy screws it up once again. This is why I tell everyone I know not to shop there.”

    You tell everyone other than your mother in law.
    This guy went in thinking he was gonna make this an issue before he started. Best Buy did EXACTLY what their policy is (and every other retailer including Amazon).
    Get a clue

  29. Chris says:

    Hard to fault Best Buy here for what they did. Short of them not offering a replacement item or store credit for his return, they can’t be faulted for refusing to give the customer cash for his return.

    If there is a store out there that does give cash for returns for items that were originally purchased via credit card, please let me know. I have a LOT of things that I want to buy from them (to be immediately returned for cash) with my 2% cash rewards credit card.

  30. TanjentUniverse says:

    “Getting the cashier to just print off a new receipt” sounds like a really good way to scam companies and such.

    “I lost my receipt, can I just get cash back on this? No, you can’t without the receipt? Can you print me off a new one? Thanks!”

  31. scorpionamongus says:

    “I went into Best Buy to return it for cash. I had the gift receipt and everything should have just worked out.”

    The purpose of a gift receipt is to make sure the recipient receives the full value paid for the item in the event he or she needs to exchange it; it does not entitle the recipient to receive cash or any other monetary award beyond a store credit.

    If companies gave cash back on gift receipt returns, scammers would be onto it very quickly; they would use the gift receipt to return the item for cash back and then with original receipt in hand, they would go to the store, pluck the item off a shelf and stroll to the customer service desk and make a second return for cash back.

    • MMD says:

      Yes, we all get that the OP shouldn’t have gotten cash. But he also didn’t get “the full value paid for the item”.

      • scorpionamongus says:

        But the full value was refunded; just not to him. As several others have mentioned, there appears to be some information missing from this account and while I have an intense dislike for Best Buy, I’m not willing to blame them – this time – based solely on this one sided account. This line, “After a few minutes of explaining again why I didn’t have the original receipt they said they could just print off another copy of it,” leads me to believe that during this time, he was offered an exchange or store credit but was insistent on a refund.

        • MMD says:

          That’s a heck of a leap to make, don’t you think?

          • consumeristjohnny says:

            Not really at all. How does BBuy benefit from a returned item? If BBuy gives a store credit they still receive the sale. In this situation they do not get credit for the sale. So no benefot to them at all. How does the OP benefit from receiving cash instead of a gift card? He can take the cash elsewhere and use it while BBuy deals with possible fraud, paying for the credit card transaction fee and stil getting no sale.
            When you look at a situation, look at who will benefit from what happened. BBuy no benefit, OOP big benefit wwhen he went in demanding REFUND.

          • scorpionamongus says:

            Not really. I’m armed with the exact same facts as you and neither of us knows the full story because it wasn’t shared here.

  32. StevePierce says:

    It’s Best Buy, quit scratching your head.

  33. The Caretaker says:

    At Amazon, when a gift is returned, Amazon give the person receiving the gift a gift card in the amount of the item. I know this because we returned a Lego set to Amazon because my parents purchased my son a set he already had. We buy him the Nerf gun he really wants on the gift card and my parents are none the wiser. There is no earthly reason Best Buy couldn’t have given the OP a BB gift card in the amount of the cost of the original purchase.

  34. jedifarfy says:

    YES PEOPLE we get it, they wouldn’t have given him cash. Super, that SHOULD have been explained to him. Instead, they returned it without offering the typical gift receipt options. This would have been great if he had lost his receipt or was just returning it.

  35. MECmouse says:

    I worked for a retailer a LONG time ago (over 25 years) and we never gave cash back for any CC purchases because credit cards get stolen and big purchases are made and then returned for cash. It’s to protect the CC customers.

  36. brinks says:

    Gift receipts are not automatically good as cash. Like any other kind of receipt, you’ll get back the original amount you paid in the same tender that was used. However, there is ALWAYS the option of getting a store credit or putting it on a gift card, and that’s usually what the recipient chooses (unless the original purchaser paid cash). Best Buy should have asked.

  37. orion70 says:

    Whatever BB did aside, it was not them that caused the family awkwardness. The awkward stems from not manning up to tell your MIL that you are returning her gift for cash.

  38. I Love Christmas says:

    BY LAW a retailer has to refund a purchase to the original form of payment if it is a credit card. Again with the blaming one retailer or manufacturer (you guys routinely blame Best Buy and Apple for things over which they have NO CONTROL) for something every other retailer does and has to do! This is because of differing interest rates and laws covering cash advances vs payments for goods and services. If cash is returned, it’s possible for people to get a cash advance at the often lower interest rate and with different laws covering the transaction of a purchase.

    But FSM forbid The Consumerist bother explaining that Best Buy simply complied with it’s merchant agreement and the LAW in this case! Just bash them because this idiot doesn’t know the consumer protection laws!