Case Studies For June 2014

Case Study #1

In 2011, Mr Goh* bought a wallet for $67 from a shop. A few days later, Mr Goh wanted an exchange as he was concerned that the magnetic button on the coin compartment of the wallet would interfere with his cards that had magnetic strips. He went back to the shop to request for an exchange as the shop had a 7-days exchange policy. However, when Mr Goh went to the shop, the staff accused him of having used the wallet and refused to do an exchange. Mr Goh requested for an exchange to a new wallet of the same price.

The case was reported and after negotiation, the business agreed to give Mr Goh a one-to-one exchange of a new wallet as the final settlement.


Case Study #2

In 2012, Ms Lim* purchased three jade bangles for $2,000 from a jewellery shop.  The staff from the shop claimed that the bangles were top grade.  The staff also claimed that the shop was accredited. Ms Lim approached a gem testing and jewellery appraisal laboratory to test the bangles. It was found that the bangles were at grade B+C which was of inferior quality.  Since the jewellery shop falsely claimed that the bangles were top grade when they were not, Ms Lim requested to return the bangles and get a full refund of $2,000.

CASE highlighted to the company that they may have infringed upon - CPFTA Section 4(b) - false claims. CASE negotiated with the shop and Ms Lim managed to get a full refund of the bangles.


Case Study #3

In 2011, Ms Ho* sent some curtains and blinds to a laundry shop for cleaning. She paid $80. Upon collection on one week later, she found out that six curtains were damaged and the colour of two blinds was faded. The shop refused to compensate her on the two blinds and was only willing to give a compensation of $300 for the six curtains based eight years depreciation. Ms Ho disagreed and requested the shop to calculate the compensation based on 20 years depreciation for all eight items which amounted to $786.23.

CASE negotiated with the business and both parties eventually agreed on a $400 compensation to Ms Ho as the final settlement.


Case Study #4

In 2011, Mr Tan’s* daughter was surfing the internet and a pop-up screen appeared. She answered a survey and was prompted on screen to win prizes. She inputted her handphone number in reply to the prompt to win the prizes but received messages via sms instead. She started answering to the questions, eventually chalking up $747 within a day. Mr Tan found out and immediately stopped the services through the telco. Mr Tan stated that his daughter was a minor and would not be able to understand the terms and conditions of the subscription. He requested for a waiver of 80% of the total cost.

CASE emphasised to company that they may have infringed on the CPFTA Section 4(a) - misleading claims and Section 4(c) - taking advantage of someone who is not in a position to protect his own interest. After negotiation, Mr Tan was successful in getting a waiver of 80% ($589).


Case Study #5

In 2011, Mdm Ong* signed up for four Microsoft Office class with a school. She paid $1,950. However, the school conducted only two courses to date and postponed the rest because there were not enough students to fill the classes. Mdm Ong was told that the school needed a certain number of participants to conduct the class. There has been no class conducted for five months. Mdm Ong was unsatisfied and requested to terminate the remaining classes and get back a refund of the two classes worth $975.

CASE advised the school that they may be in breach of the CPFTA Section 4(a) - misleading claims. After negotiation, both parties agreed to a refund of $809.


*Please note that surnames have been changed to ensure the privacy of the consumers.

Should you find yourself in a similar situation, please do not hesitate to seek assistance from CASE. For general enquiries, you can call our hotline at 6100 0315 between 9am and 5pm from Mondays to Fridays and between 9am and 12pm on Saturdays. For an in-depth consultation with our officers, please visit us at 170 Ghim Moh Road, #05-01 Ulu Pandan Community Building, between 9am and 4pm from Mondays to Saturdays. You can also file a complaint online here.
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