Commissioner's Blog: Receipt rules apply to all purchases
Many shoppers like to ‘tap-and-go’ when paying for purchases, while others like to hand-over cash, but one thing all consumers have in common is the right to receive a receipt if they want one.
Consumer Protection was concerned recently to hear claims that a retailer in WA had denied a consumer’s request for a paper receipt, citing ‘company policy’ and pointing them to their own bank statement for proof of purchase.
If the consumer had later discovered a higher than expected amount had been charged to their account, not having a receipt could mean they were without the evidence needed to dispute the matter.
Under the Australian Consumer Law, receipts must be issued as soon as possible for all purchases of $75 or more (excluding GST) regardless of whether payment was made by cash or card.
For purchases totalling less than $75, a customer is still entitled to request and receive a receipt, which must be provided within seven days.
Receipts can either be handwritten, issued by a machine at the point of sale, or as a GST tax invoice, but they must all include the supplier’s name, the ABN or ACN (if the supplier has one), the date of supply, the goods or service purchased, and the total price.
When it comes to making a claim on faulty products or services, receipts might be the most obvious proof of transaction, but they are not the only type. Other acceptable forms of evidence can include a photograph of the receipt, a credit or debit card statement, a lay-by agreement, a warranty card showing the supplier’s or manufacturer’s details, the date and purchase amount, or some combination of these which supports their claim.
Ultimately, so long as you can reasonably demonstrate that you purchased an item, a business may be breaking the law if it denies your right to a refund, repair or replacement for an item that fails to meet a consumer guarantee.
If a business hasn’t given you a receipt or bill when they should, your first step should be to approach them to explain the problem. Should they still refuse to provide a receipt, we would like to hear from you on 1300 30 40 54 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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