Store Goes Out Of Business Before Delivering Crib

Christopher and his wife bought a crib through a local store, and two and half months later they still haven’t received it. Now the store is going out of business, and Christopher isn’t sure what he can do to get his money back.

He writes:

Not sure where else to turn, as Google has failed me. Perhaps you guys would be able to ask the crowd and help me out with my dilemma.

My wife and I are expecting in October with our first child. In advance of this, we purchased a crib set at the end of March from a local, established baby store. They told us it would arrive at the beginning of August, as they had to order it from the manufacturer.

We found out yesterday evening from the friend of the owner that the store is closing… closing now. No one we know has heard anything about it.

I call this morning, and the line is a busy tone. Their website is gone. I’m going by there at lunch, but I have no confidence that they are still open.

Needless to say, we have not received the crib. Our card was charged the day we ordered it. What do we do now? Do we dispute the charge with the credit card company? Would we even get our money back since its been 2 1/2 months? We don’t have the stores order number with the manufacturer, and they were supposed to call us when it came in so we could pick it up.

Having a child is stressful enough, but to think we’re out $1000 is a little much to take.

A chargeback, of course, is the first suggestion that springs to mind—but there is a 60 day window to initiate a chargeback for billing errors. Since 60 days have already passed, it may still be possible to initiate a chargeback under your “claims and defenses” rights. The difference here is you have up to a year to file the claim, but the amount you charged must still be unpaid. If you’re still carrying the debt for the crib on the credit card then it’s possible you can initiate a claims and defenses chargeback, but we can’t guarantee it.

Before doing any of that, of course, you should try to reach someone at the store and attempt to work out a refund with them. Get whatever you can in writing, even if it’s just an invoice for the undelivered crib, so that you have more paper evidence for any further actions you have to take. Then contact your state’s Attorney General office and find out what chargeback options you have under state laws and proceed from there.

(Photo: Ed Yourdon)

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