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I want to report something being advertised at the wrong price

It’s important to know what your rights are if you want to buy something only to be told that the price on the label or advert was wrong and it is going to cost more than you expected.

In store

If you’re in a store and you see an item priced on the shelf but when you get to the till you’re told that this price is wrong and the item costs more. There is unfortunately no legal requirement for the trader to sell you the item for the lesser price. This is the same if you’ve seen an item advertised at lower price than what the store is selling.

Online

When you place an order online for goods your rights will depend on whether you have a contract with the trader. This is usually determined by the trader’s terms and conditions which may state that a contract is not in place until;

  • You have received an email confirming acceptance of your order
  • The goods have been dispatched

If a contract is not yet in place, then any order that you place can be cancelled by the trader.

If a contract is in place, then the trader will not usually be able to cancel the order however, if the incorrect pricing was a genuine mistake and something that you should have been easily noticeable to you, for example a new washing machine being sold for £59, then the trader could still be entitled to cancel the order.

Traders who fail to fix incorrect pricing on items or regularly price items incorrectly could be seen as attempting to mislead the public.

Last updated: 29 March 2019

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