• Report: #516031
Complaint Review:

B&H Photo Video

  • Submitted: Wed, October 28, 2009
  • Updated: Wed, October 28, 2009

  • Reported By: anonymous — Boston Internet USA
B&H Photo Video
420 9th Avenue New York, New York United States of America

B&H Photo Video - B&H Photo Video Used department Bait and Switch, Sent Older Model of Camera, Did not refund full amount New York New York

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After researching digital SLR cameras I decided to buy the Olympus E-510. I found B&H  Photo Video through a google search and saw that had a used Olympus E-510 in good condition, and for an unbeatable price it was the lowest I had seen. I ordered the camera on 7/14/09 for $319.00 with 10.75 for shipping, a total of $329.75.

On 7/16 I was thrilled that the camera arrived so soon, only to find out they sent me the wrong camera. They had actually downgraded my purchase to a lesser version of the same brand. At first I thought it was an just a unlucky mistake, and since they were closed  for the day, I wrote them an urgent e-mail telling them that they had made a mistake and to please hold the Olympus E-510 so that I could exchange the camera they accidentally shipped to me for it.

Bright and early in the morning I called them and told them about what happened. [continued below]....
..... I had to go through so many ill mannered people until finally I found someone that could help me. He said it was a mistake and that  I could send it back, I told him I wanted to exchange it for the E-510 that I had purchased and that I hope they still had it. He then informed me that they never had it! And that it was a labeling mistake.

Disapointed I told him that I wanted a refund, and that I should not have to pay for return shipping because it was not my fault I was sent the wrong camera. He said that they would reimburse me for the shipping cost and that I should include a copy of the shipping receipt. But they would only pay for unisured ground shipping!I said that was silly, what if something happened during shipment? I don't want to be held responsible for that. And he replied that I could purchase insurance but B&H will only reimburse me for the ground shipping and not the insurance.

So 7/17 I returned the camera for $13.55 via USPS.

On 7/24 they refunded $329.75 to me using the refund option in paypal.

I noticed something strange about the way they refunded the money
 B&H did it in two partial refunds:

one for $316.20 and another for $13.55 which adds up to the original $329.75 I paid for the camera and original shipping. But the strangest part about it was $13.55 was also the amount I paid for the return shipping!

I called them and asked when I could expect to receive my reimbursement for the return shipping and rep. said I should see it post in to my paypal account in 3-5 business days. After this time I called them back and said I still hadn't received the money for the return shipping. The rep. told me that their system says they had reimbursed me for the return shipping on 7/24. I told him they had made a mistake and made two partial refunds that equaled the amount of the original purchase price but they never sent me the $13.55 for the return shipping. He kept telling me that I was mistaken and that B&H owed me nothing, and that their computer system doesnt lie or make mistakes. I tried to explain to him how paypal works and that the two partial refunds are linked to the same original transaction and that in order to reimburse me for the return shipping they needed to send me money with paypal separate to original transaction and he said he didnt know about these things he didn't work in billing. I asked to speak with someone in billing, but he told me the person that does the billing is not in.

He gave me what he said was the Paypal transaction ID number for the reimbursement of the return shipping and told me to contact Paypal because in his opinion B&H did everything they were suppose to on their end.
So I called paypal and talked to a rep. and she said the transaction Id numbers given to me could not be paypal transaction ID numbers because they were too short, and that the whole situation sounded like fraud to her. She then informed me that there was nothing Paypal could do about it but sent an email on my behalf, telling B&H there was no such transaction made. Because the original amount I paid had already been refunded there was nothing PayPal could do.

After calling back and telling the same B&H rep from earlier this info, he still insisted that they made no mistake and that they are reputable business etc etc. 

I firmly believe that not only have I been scammed out of $13.55 but what happened was bait and switch. Clearly the partial refund for the same amount as the return shipping cannot be a mistake. B&H had to manually type in $13.55 and then knowingly refund the remainder.

B&H was hoping that I didn't notice the camera was a lesser model (they look almost the same, but the E-510 has way more features). Their return policy is 14days, and after that I would be stuck with the camera. And they knowingly did not refund the return shipping to me. I don't care If it's only $13.55 its the principle of the matter, It is MY MONEY and I should not have lost any money returning their mistake!

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 10/28/2009 02:07 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/bh-photo-video/new-york-new-york-10001/bh-photo-video-bh-photo-video-used-department-bait-and-switch-sent-older-model-of-cam-516031. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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