Q. We are having an absolutely horrible experience with Samsung. We purchased a new Samsung washer and dryer and after about six weeks of use, the washing machine failed. I called Samsung and 10 days later a service technician came to evaluate the washer. He was unable to repair the machine. Eventually Samsung decided that we should get an exchange rather than a repair, which meant that they would replace our defective washer with a new one. Then we were told that an exchange was not possible because the retailer, The Home Depot, did not participate in their exchange program. Instead, we would be issued a refund. Now we are running into roadblocks. Three times we have submitted to them the original cash register receipt and the invoice showing the itemization of the merchandise purchased, yet we have been told repeatedly that our refund request has been rejected. We need your help.
Rachel Werkema, Ashland
A. Sometimes consumers get stuck in a weird place from which there appears to be no way out. Kudos for quickly realizing this was one of those situations.
Despite help from The Home Depot, whatever wall you were running into with Samsung appeared unmovable. You seem to have taken the proper steps: You documented everything, you contacted the right people, followed up, and even escalated the problem to the executive level.
It's nice to see someone actually do all the right things. It should have worked. Because it didn't, this was an easy fight to take on. Still, it ends up back in the company's hands to see if they'll make it right. Fortunately, Samsung did.
"Samsung is committed to delivering a positive experience for our customers," the company said in a statement. "While we aim to provide 100 percent customer satisfaction, regretfully in this case there was an unintentional mistake that caused a delay in the refund process. Samsung has been in communication with the Werkemas, and we expect that the refund will be delivered to them within 5-7 business days."
Sure, it would have been nice if they did a bit more to make nice after the delays and frustration of dealing with them, but the refund is what you were due and, at last, you'll get it. Not every dispute is so black and white, but when it is, you have to look for every edge you can to get someone to listen.
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About the author
Mitch Lipka is one of America's leading consumer journalists and advocates. He is an expert in product safety, recalls, scams, and helping consumers get out of jams. He is a nationally known consumer columnist and runs TheConsumerChronicle.com. He lives in Worcester. You can find him on Facebook or reach him at ConsumerNews@Aol.com