Target To 80-Year-Old: Yeah, We Sold You The Wrong Watch Battery, But We Won't Take It Back

David cc’d us on a letter he recently sent to Target:

My mother in law, recently went to Target to get a battery installed for her watch. The watch was a common Timex model and the associate told her that she would have to buy the battery first. So she purchased that battery, and the associate attempted to install it in the watch. The battery did not fit the watch, so the associate said “sorry, we don’t have the right battery” and then refused to take the battery back and refund her money. She was told they don’t take back opened battery packages.

Was she taken advantage of as she is 80 years old, or is this store policy? This occurred at the Target Superstore in Miramar, Florida two weeks ago.

We asked David if he tried following up with Target on his mother-in-law’s behalf.

Yes, I called and spoke to store an asst mgr, who stated that store policy is no returns on opened/used batteries. I said she never left the store, had remained at the counter, and it was your person that opened the package to remove the battery to install in her watch. I said I DONT FIND THIS ACCEPTABLE………………..is this the way you treat the elderly who came to your store for assistance, and then has to buy something she cant use !!!!

After pushing the issue, she said its “its only a small amount, I probably would have taken the battery back if I was aware of this” and, “come back to the store and we will discuss this further”

So, it will cost me more in gas $$$ than the battery is worth to drive back to that store and meet with her to get a refund.

From this, I must assume it is Target policy to screw the watch battery customer………..

I know its a small $$$ amount, but for the elderly, on social security, every penny matters.

Little things like watch batteries may not cost much stores much, but blind adherence to obstinately obtuse policies can cost stores customers. The Assistant Manager at least had the common sense to realize that this is a problem with an easy solution.

Of course, the easiest solution is to treat Target as a low-end big box store, and not a repair shop. Our local jeweler resurrects dead watches for $5, which may be a bit steep compared to Target, but he’s never cited ‘store policy,’ and he always gets our watches ticking again.

(Photo: Getty)