Manufacturer's Warranties - Who Is Legally Responsible?

Discussion in 'General TV Discussions Forum' started by michaelm, Apr 20, 2002.

  1. michaelm

    michaelm
    Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2001
    Messages:
    678
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    21
    Location:
    Belfast
    Ratings:
    +3
    I bought a Toshiba 32" widescreen last year. It came with 1 year's accidental damage cover as part of the warranty. In February, I noticed a large scratch (about 3" vertically) on the faceplate and so I contacted Toshiba re repair under the accidental damage clause of the warranty.

    I was referred to London General who "administer the accidental damage part of the warranty" (Toshiba Customer Services) and they arranged for a local service company, Owenmore Electronic Services who are literally 3 minutes from my home, to take the tv away. It was taken by them on February 20th and to date (April 20th) it has not been repaired. Owenmore say this is due to the part being unavailable.

    London General are refusing to replace the tv stating that the accidental damage policy (?) covers repair only and are insisting repair times are open ended, making any repair time acceptable. I have never received any "policy" relating to the warranty.

    Toshiba are washing their hands of the whole affair.

    My local authority say that the repair time is well past unacceptable and is now bordering on the ridiculous and insulting. They advised me to write to both London General and Toshiba asking them to replace the tv. If they refuse, my Local Authority say they will "resolve the matter".

    So who is responsible, Toshiba who supplied the warranty or London General who administer it?

    Let me state that both my retailer and Owenmore are blameless in this whole problem.
     
  2. Ludae

    Ludae
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Your contract is with Toshiba.
     
  3. dsb

    dsb
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    i disagree -as to my understanding the contract is with the business from which the set has been purchased -i say that as someone who had to use that point of law to get a refund from john lewis for a crappy fq75.
    even if the shop itself is as you say blameless they are still the people who you should go through.
     
  4. gringottsdirect

    gringottsdirect
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Messages:
    2,917
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    71
    Location:
    50 Rue St Georges, Paris.
    Ratings:
    +32
    michaelm,
    dsb is correct.
    Toshiba have no obligation to deal with you at all. Your "contract" is with the dealer from whom you made the purchase.
    If you feel the damage was before you took delivery, your dealer will feel you should have reported the damage on receipt of the goods or very soon after, say within 24 hours.
    If damaged after receipt, the accidental damage cover you have should oblige the dealer you purchased from to contact the insurer for you to obtain a satisfactory outcome.
    Frankly, I do not believe a replacement part is "unavailable".
    Contact the dealer and tell them trading standards have advised this approach. As for your local authority resolving the matter, I wouldn't get your hopes up.
    Many folks who have purchased from poor dealers, high street or mail order, only realise too late that manufacturers invariably don't want to know, they are often shocked when "good" dealers simply refer them back to the original seller.
     
  5. groundy

    groundy
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2001
    Messages:
    1,554
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    39
    Location:
    Northern Ireland
    Ratings:
    +1
    As above. Your contract is with the retailer. I found this out the hard way after many months of false promises from Toshiba over the ZP18 fiasco. The length of time you have waited is unacceptable. The retailer (although blameless) has an obligation to sort this out with the insurance company. At the very least, they should have provided you with a replacement set until the repair was carried out. At two months now, I doubt it can/will be repaired. Time to start shouting methinks.
     
  6. michaelm

    michaelm
    Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2001
    Messages:
    678
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    21
    Location:
    Belfast
    Ratings:
    +3
    Right, the situation is this:

    I contacted Toshiba re the accidental damage warranty. I asked if I should go through the dealer for this and was pointed, by Toshiba, in the direction of London General as the administers of the Accidental Damage clause of the warranty.

    As a result, I don't believe the dealer should be responsible for an action that has taken place (well) after the set has been in my posession. It was not through any fault of either the dealer or Toshiba that my set was damaged, but if Toshiba wanted to provide 1 year's accidental damage on the set then they ultimately should be responsible for the repair or replacement of the set. They do, after all, have a direct-to-the-public sales arm so they are in a position to replace directly.

    I think the Accidental Damage thing was a promotional thing for extended warranties.

    As for my Local Authority, I believe that they do have the power to rectify the matter. If any of you are old enough to remember the Hoover free flights offer, at that time I had a problem with Hoover reneging on flights to Florida. They refused point blank to reconsider and my Local Authority's Consumer Advice people sorted the matter out by phone within 30 mins. So I have every faith in them.

    Oh, and the shouting has already started.
     
  7. groundy

    groundy
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2001
    Messages:
    1,554
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    39
    Location:
    Northern Ireland
    Ratings:
    +1
    What you're saying about Toshiba's responsibility etc., is a valid arguement. Unfortunately Toshiba do not seem to be the best company when it comes to customer relations and honouring agreements. I spoke directly to the head of Toshiba Product support (as did a few others) on numerous occassions thoughout the well documented ZP18 model faults and features. He promised a full-refund in the event that the problems could not be fixed. When it came to the crunch though, Toshiba turned their backs on me and the retailer. Fortunately , the retailer was willing to deal and we came to a satisfactory agreement.

    It is ultimately the retailers decision and responsibility on such matters. The retailer should be dealing directly with Toshiba and the insurance company, regardless of blame. One thing for sure though, you should never have to deal with the insurance company yourself. Check your PM, I've sent you something that may be of help.

    As for the Hoover free flights offer.....you lucky bastard!:)
     
  8. gringottsdirect

    gringottsdirect
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Messages:
    2,917
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    71
    Location:
    50 Rue St Georges, Paris.
    Ratings:
    +32
    I wish you success.
    Hoover were taken to court by a group of angry customers who got together because as individuals their complaints fell on stoney ground. At the time Hoover ran the "free flights" promotion it was substantially more popular than Hoover were expecting. People who didn't even need a new cleaner bought them to get the flights.
    Hoover did not respond to customers singularly, trading standards or even BBC Watchdog. They did respond following their case failing in the High Court. All customers were able to benefit once the legal situation was clarified. It was at this point your "Local Authority" was able to help.
    As an individual, unless you can put together a collective of people with the same grievance, obtaining a happy ending against a manufacturer is very rare.
    Toshiba do not sell televisions direct to the public. They do deliver televisions direct to the public which have been purchased from "dealers". Even under this arrangement your "contract" is with the dealer you bought it from.
    I'm just trying to harden your resolve to battle the dealer who took your money. Good luck.
     
  9. michaelm

    michaelm
    Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2001
    Messages:
    678
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    21
    Location:
    Belfast
    Ratings:
    +3
    I got my flights almost 2 years before the court case happened.

    Page 167, HCC, 05/2002 issue:
    "Toshiba Direct
    Unbeatable discounted prices on Toshiba Widescreen & Projection Televisions
    Delivered Direct to you by Toshiba
    020 8445 5042"

    Sounds like direct selling to me. They also sell their own extended warranties direct. This would not involve your dealer either.
     
  10. gringottsdirect

    gringottsdirect
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Messages:
    2,917
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    71
    Location:
    50 Rue St Georges, Paris.
    Ratings:
    +32
    michaelm,
    Toshiba Direct are in fact not Toshiba, they are a dealer making use of the internet and mail order, as you say it sounds like direct selling to you, doh!, that's the idea. Yes they can arrange televisions to be delivered to you by Toshiba, but so can any other "dealer".
    I'm very happy you enjoyed your free flights two years before the court case, that wasn't a common experience.
    I'm pleased you are displaying a fiesty temperament, now go and sort out your dealer... we are only trying to help.
     
  11. Ludae

    Ludae
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    I don't think it is quite so straight forward as some are suggesting in that every aspect of the sale of the TV and its benefits are the responsibility of the dealer through the sale of goods Act.

    Please be aware that the sale of goods Act doesn't give you the right to a one year warranty that most people have come to expect and enjoy; such benefits are usually offered by the manufacturer not the dealer, the dealer is only resonsible up to a 'reasonable length of time'. The extra warranty or insurrance policy appears to be offered directly from Toshiba not the dealer.

    I had a similar but simply resolved episode with a Mitusbishi TV I had some years ago whereby Mitsubishi offered a free extended warranty for the TV and insurrance policy for the tube. None of these benefits were the responsibility of the dealer, who at the point of claim had gone out of business anyway.

    The dealer who sold the Toshiba may wish to get involved for the sake of customer service and good will but they are going to have their limits beyond which they will distance themselves from the issue regardless.
     
  12. gringottsdirect

    gringottsdirect
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2002
    Messages:
    2,917
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    71
    Location:
    50 Rue St Georges, Paris.
    Ratings:
    +32
    Ludae,
    If dealers are good at distancing themselves, wait until michaelm trys Toshiba. (or others).
    Mitsubishi decided they had other fish to fry long before all the land grabbing negative profit internet hopefuls were involved.
    Back in those days makers did try to build customer loyalty, now it is mostly lip service, their margins are so thin.
    With the exception of LG, most of the major consumer electronics brands are running on empty. Even Bang & Olufsen isn't making enough return to pleasure the share holders, and they are about the most high margin for dealers in the business, along with Loewe.
    You are right when you say it isn't that simple to gain redress, but at least the Sale Of Goods Act states your legal rights.
    It's the dealer rightly or wrongly who has to put things right.
     
  13. MarkTaylor

    MarkTaylor
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2002
    Messages:
    4,328
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    133
    Ratings:
    +662
    Just a guess here, but I imagine that to get the insurance you had to register your purchase with Toshiba once you got the TV home.

    The insurance was a perk from Toshiba and not part of the contract with the retailer.

    If the set was faulty you would most certainly be dealing with the retailer, but this isn't a fault with the set, it is an insurance claim that has nothing to do with the retailer who did not sell the insurance policy.

    You're going to have to rely on the retailers good will here, if he decides to get involved then all credit to him, but he really has no part of this problem.

    About the only way you could tie the retailer into this is if he had advertised the accidental damage insurance as a part of the sale.

    Mark
     
  14. AndyFox

    AndyFox
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    Think I would disagree with the majority here.

    The point is more to do with the INSURANCE policy which you are claiming on as the issue is regarding accidental damage.

    The policy could be 'Customer the insured' - likely I would think as you are the one who has a vested interest in the TV. Also typically the safest type to have.
    Could be 'Dealer Insured' in that the insurance or guarantee is issued to you under their name. In that case you issue in the first part is with the selling dealer as they are the insured party and you have to ask the to repair your TV. This is probably the most risky as the delaer could go bust and you are left with a worthless peice of paper!
    Finally could be 'Manufacturer Insured' so this would be similar to 'Dealer Insured' but you have the 'security' of a big name securing you product. Often the 'Tube Warranty' schemes are like this as teh manufacturer doesn't expect it to fail, so takes the 'risk' themselves, thus they should save themselves money in the long run!

    So the assumption of 'Customer Insured' you take this up with London General who are insuring against accidental damage and get them to pull their finger out. They may well be correct about not covering replacement if TV is irrepairable- need to check what the policy documentation states. However I was under the impression that a manufacturer had to ensure spare parts for a period of years after a product was taken off sale and ensure they are in suitable supply for the item, not 1 yr wait lists etc....

    Andy
     
  15. simon1

    simon1
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2001
    Messages:
    918
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Location:
    Teesside
    Ratings:
    +58
    Like Andy Fox just mentioned, I'm sure that manufacturers are obliged to provide spare parts for at least x amount of years.

    Problem is I think that doesn't include 'cosmetic' items. Cosmetic items can be classed as more or less any part that doesn't influence the operation of the product.

    I agree with the posts that suggest your beef is with the insurer. Unless the retailer advertised the insurance or mentioned it as part of the sale, I can't see how he/she is in any way liable.

    Good luck
     
  16. Chappers

    Chappers
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    As one who makes a hobby of threatening to sue every firm that upsets me, with a 100% success rate so far (BT, Sainsburys, Sketchley, BUPA consultant, Daily Mail, etc. etc) I would advise you to write a 7 day letter to the CEO or MD of the RETAILER !!
    The Sale & supply of goods and services says a product (in this case the attached insurance policy) must be of satisfactory quality (to YOU !!).
    It does depend what you want however?
    I would give them seven days to return the TV, failing which I WOULD go and buy another identical model, safe in the knowledge that I have given then ample time to return it (7 days is ample).
    So write thus: "..... and unless my television is returned to me having been repaired to my satisfaction by 29 April (7 days) I shall assume that you intend to keep it forever in which case I shall purchase an identical model and issue proceedings for the recovery of the purchase price against you on that day in the (local) County Court incurring you in Court Fees.
    Should you return it by 29 April unrepaired, I shall have it repaired at my cost and thereafter issue proceedings in the County Court for recovery of such cost from you without any further notice."
    I've NEVER had to go to Court. EVERY company mentioned above has settled to my satisfaction once they've had the letter.
    The RETAILER is ALWAYS to blame, no matter how 'nice' they are.
    Do you want a friendship with your retailer or your telly back !!
     
  17. AndyFox

    AndyFox
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    But as I said before - the issue is NOT with the retailer in this case - the TV was of mechantable quality - the issue is with the INSURANCE company who are dragging their feet apparently in getting some accidental damage repaired.

    If you want the court route then the Insurance company is the one to take on in my opinion.

    It MAY be work writing a strongly worded complaint letter to the retailer advising that the Insurance scheme they sold you for the TV is causing you a problem and you would expect them to honour the agreement and sort it out on your behalf with teh Insurance company.


    Andy
     
  18. michaelm

    michaelm
    Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2001
    Messages:
    678
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    21
    Location:
    Belfast
    Ratings:
    +3
    I just received a phone call from Toshiba today. Before I tell you about it, here's an update on what has been happening lately:

    The insurance company refused to replace the set as the warranty is repair only. They sent me a copy of the warranty that shows this. However there is a clause in the warranty that states a replacement will not be issued IF THE REQUIRED PART IS NO LONGER AVAILABLE. The part for my set is available, it just cannot be obtained, so this could be challenged as a point of law.

    I wrote to both the isurance company and Toshiba advising of my intent to take legal action if the set was not repaired or replaced.

    A nice lady from Toshiba's spares customer services dept rang me and said that they were trying to source the tube from another set.

    This ultimately proved fruitless as the only tubes they could get were made by Phillips and were the wrong type for my set.

    So back to today's call.

    It was the same nice lady to tell me that I will be taking delivery of a brand new identical tv on Monday :D . This sort of restores my faith in Big Business. So hopefully all will be well that ends well.

    But I have to ask myself, is it merely coincidence that Monday is the 20th, exactly 3 months since my set was taken away? :eek:
     
  19. groundy

    groundy
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2001
    Messages:
    1,554
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    39
    Location:
    Northern Ireland
    Ratings:
    +1
    Good result mate :). It just shows what the mere threat of legal action can do.
     

Share This Page

Loading...
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice