Target Insists We Keep Or Give Away Gift We Didn't Order, Then Asks For It Back

Mindy and her husband were surprised to receive a doll in the mail from, as they’re not doll collectors and a look at the packing slip revealed it was shipped to someone in another city. So they set about trying to send it back, in the hopes that the rightful owner would get it.

But as these things go, trying to return something just wasn’t in the cards for Mindy and her husband.

The first problem? Some little girl likely wasn’t going to receive her Christmas present. And the second — someone, they didn’t know who, had probably tried to buy them a gift that could have been mis-delivered as well. So Mindy took action.

I called’s customer service number and explained the situation. The woman I talked to (yes, I should have noted her name) told me repeatedly that, as we had received something we had not ordered, we should keep the doll or donate it charity. She also told me that there was no way to discover who had purchased a present for us or what the present was.

I updated my husband on the situation, and he suggested that I call back and ask to speak to a supervisor. I did this. I was again told that we could keep the doll or donate it to charity. And I was again told that there was no way to discover what we should have been sent or who had sent it. There were various numbers on the mailing label that seemed as though they might somehow be significant to the Target shipping system, but I was assured that those numbers could not be used to locate the order we should have received. There was nothing Target could do about this situation.

While breaking down the shipping boxes for recycling, I noticed that one number on the shipping label appeared to be a phone number. After a bit of research (i.e., looking through my cell phone), I discovered it was my sister-in-law’s cell phone number. That mystery solved, we emailed her to explain what happened. She then contacted customer service.

Today, we received an email from Target’s customer service requesting that we print out a mailing label and ship the doll back to them. My husband emailed his sister to let her know that we would not be doing that, per the directions we received from Target the day before. She quickly wrote back that Target would not refund her money for the rice cooker we had not received until we shipped the doll back.

To sum it up — Target insists they keep the doll or give it to someone in need, and refuses to help resolve the situation… and then they totally reverse that directive.

Mindy fired back an email outlining the situation to Target in response to their demands, and asking for a refund on the rice cooker for her sister-in-law, adding:

Now, you would like us to send the doll back. We would need to purchase a box and packing tape, print a label, and then arrange for a UPS pick up. This is a fair bit of effort on our part for a mistake on Target’s part that we tried twice to remedy with customer service. If you would like the doll back, you will need to arrange to have a courier or some other service pick up the doll at a time that is convenient to us.

She says she understands it’s a crazy time of year, with packages flying around, but that the way Target handled the situation is annoying, and that they’ve lost her as a customer.