Circuit City Incorporated Orlando Rip Off-Circuit City Does Stand By Their Products Orlando Florida
I purchased a 73' Mitsubishi DLP Widescreen Television (WD-73735 SN:100196) from Circuit City (400 N. Alafaya Trail, Orlando Fl, 32828 407-2739621) at 6:57PM on June 19th in good faith and with intention of years of reliability and enjoyment. (We also purchased a television stand, power/surge protector, HDMA chord, and Advantage Protection Planan additional $700-800 in accessories).
The young lady who sold the television to us asked us if we had a truck to take it home. I thought it would fit in my SUV. She said it was much too large and went and had it measured for us. She recommended that we go to Home Depot and rent a truck. We decided to go with a friend and his truck. PXXX drove over to the friend's house (she did not have her telephone with their number). This took about 35 minutes. We completed the purchase process and the box was loaded onto a friends pickup truck by store employees and a few of our friends in the store's customer pickup drive-up area. The television was delivered to my residence at XXXXXXXXXXXXXX Orlando FL, 32822.
My 14 year old daughter and I opened the television box by removing the packing straps. We lifted the box clear of the television and started to clear away the packing wrap on the television. I noticed that the right side of the television screen (facing the TV from front) was bowed out, protruding past the edge of the television. There was a good size gap that one could see what appeared to be mirrors laying loose on the bottom of the set. I took two pictures of the gap in the television screen and I later learned (at the store during return) that my daughter had taken a video of the damage and television during the unpacking with her cel phone). It can be seen from the pictures and video that the base of the television was still wrapped on all sides and that the screen is protruding.
I tried to call Circuit City to tell them the television was damaged but the store was closed (this can be seen on the video). It was decided that we would return the television first thing next morning. Pxxxx, our daughter, and I packed up the television. We had the cable people coming between 4-6PM and we wanted to get a good television in place. I rented a pickup truck because our friend was working and we loaded and delivered the television back to the Circuit City Store. Since we live in a mobile home all was necessary was to move away the outside stairs and slide the television carton out the door and right into the truck.
I went into the store and told a Circuit City employee that I needed to return a television because it was broken. He said OK and came out with a small cart. The television was unloaded by the store employee. I told him to be careful because the straps were not secure. He said no problem. I offered to help and he implied no need and pulled the carton off of the pickup truck to a push cart that was too short for the size of the box. It would tilt up and down and needed to be balanced. He walked the television to the front of the store and accidentally banged it into the door (he was expecting the door to open automatically). He asked me to go in and stand near the door so that it would open, which I did. I asked him if it was alright to leave the truck in the pick-up zone while we went through the exchange and he said it would be alright.
I went to the Customer Service desk and told them I wanted to return a television because it was broken. Both the person behind the counter and I walked over to the corner of the store where the television was left. I told him how I discovered the damage to the television during the unpacking. Two of the store attendants started to open the television box by opening from the top instead of just lifting the box off of the television. The person from behind the counter told them to stop and just lift the top of the carton off of the television.
When the box is removed another store employee pulls away the packing and pushes in the protruding screen back into the frame. (I thought to myself..is that itall fixed?) No one has spoken to menot even the person who was at the counter.
I ask what the delay is and they say that they have to wait for that man. (They in this case is the counter man, the man that took the television off of the truck and I believe two other employees.) The Man (later learned to be the Store Manager) comes to the box and says nothing to me or Pxxx. He looks at the box and then starts to examine in minute detail the television. I show him where the screen was protruded and one of the other store employees points out where it appears that there is something pressing against the screen from the inside. The Man moves the packing material from around the lower corner of the television and then walks away. I do not believe the man saw the protrusion of the screen because he arrived after one of the store employees pushed it back into its frame. He is talking on the telephone in the distance.
The Man eventually returns and apologizes and introduces himself as the the store manager and that he had spoken with the district manager. He said since there is no apparent damage to the carton and that there is damage to the set itself in the two locations (protrusion area and corner (surprisingly the corner that the store employee hit against the door)) that Circuit City would not exchange or refund the cost of the television. At this point he has not asked me anything about the damagejust made an inspection, a telephone call and a decision. I was very upset. Pxxx is wondering what is going on and I tell her that they are not going to return or refund the television. She asks why and I tell her they believe that we have damaged the television. She says that this is not true and all we did was open the box. All of this fell on deaf ears.
The television costs $3000.00. I reiterated to the store manager that the only thing that we did was cut away the straps, lift off the box, clear away the packing and stopped when we saw that the television screen was protruding. He stated that the mirrors were broken and the corner of the television was broken as well. Since there was no damage to the box and that they would not have given us broken televisions that Circuit City would not pay refund or do exchange. He said that the employee who delivered the carton to our car on purchase would not have given us the television because they would have heard the broken glass inside. (There was no sound of broken glass inside on delivery or returnthe store manager did not hear and broken glass as well.)
I asked to speak with someone higher and he said that he has already conferred with the Regional Director. I spoke with the Regional Director. The regional director just parrots the Store Manager's decision that no refund or replacement since it cannot be proven that the damage to the television occurred in Circuit City. I again told him that all we did was open the box and discovered the damage. We put the box back on the television and delivered it to Circuit City. I told him I was expecting him to stand behind their guarantee and their product. I did not do anything here but open a box and that I was being stuck for $3000. He said that he was sticking by the guarantee and that the guarantee says in its original condition. I told him that you sold it to me broken and I am returning it to you as I received it. He was unconcerned and that his decision was final.
Note: I do not understand the issue of the condition of the box. If the box is not damaged then Circuit City does not cover the television. If the box is damageddoes that mean they would cover the damage or would they infer that the damage on the box was after the Television left the store and therefore would not cover the damage to the television---damage to box=no coverage; no damage to box=no coverage. I am at a loss.
I told store manager that I was going to stop the credit card because I was not going to be taken advantage of and stuck for a television that is broken that I did not break. He said if I believed it was a manufacturer's defect I should go through the Manufacturer-Mitsubishi. I told him how can it be a defectit is not a burned out bulb or something that was not made rightit is broken. The store manager told me that there is apparent evidence of physical damage to the set. I said that the only way the set could get physical damage would be if I (we) lifted the television out of the packing and dropped it in some way. He looked at me affirmatively and stated that he has a lot of experience in this area. I told him again that all we did was to open the box, pull away the packing, see the damage, take pictures, and close the box. I told him I was not going to be stuck for $3000 for something I had nothing to do with. I told him I was going to stop the credit card. Pxxx wants to know if we can go to small claims court. He said that is my right stop credit card if I chose to and he gave me a telephone number for Corporate. I told store manager that it was not right that we were being stuck for the $3000 and that there was not going to be a refund. He said that if they took the television back that they would have to write off the $3000 and it was not in their budget. The store manage and everyone now left. We stayed by the television and I continued to make calls.
I called Circuit City corporate and spoke with a young lady. I relayed the entire story. She then sent me to an Escalator or Escalation Department. I spoke to a gentlemenI told him the entire story. He said he would talk to the store management and would be right back. After being on hold an inordinate amount of time he came back and said that there was going to be no resolution and basically repeated what the Store Manager and Regional Manager said about no refund, no exchange. I again stated my disbelief and restated what we had donejust opened a box and found damage, closed, returned, the box. While I was explaining this again I noted that the individual had Hung up.
Now what you have is Pxxxx, our daughter and mealonenear an unpacked and broken television within Circuit City while all the employees went about doing their business. Circuit City was done with us. The implication is that we unpacked the television, broke the television, put the television back in the box, and then attempted to return a broken television. The reality is that we purchased a television in good faith, brought it home, discovered the damage, documented the damage, repacked the television, brought the television back for a refund/exchange and were denied and left felt as if we were crooks or felons.
At this time my daughter relates to me that she has the previous evenings unpacking and damage discovery on her cel phone video. I watch with her and the protruding screen is evident as well as the television still in a partial unpack condition sitting in its box. Pxxxx is on the couch (upset) and I can be seen looking at the receipt with cel phone in hand calling Circuit City. I call the store manager over and have him look at the video and pointed out that the television never left the box, was never removed from the box, is only partially unwrapped and there the damage (protruding screen) is evident. He says nothing and walks away unmoved by visual evidence that we only opened the box and discovered the damage.
I called the Bank of America Credit Card Company. I related the story of the television, our treatment, the refusal of Circuit City to refund/replace, and implication that we were at fault. The BOA rep advised me to take the television back to the house, document everything that happened in a letter to BOA, and send letter to BOA in Wilmington Delaware. She was incredulous on how poorly the Circuit City staff and employees were handling this situation. She asked me if we had purchased any warranty with the television. I told her we had paid an additional $289 for an Advantage Warranty. She said to go home and call the warranty people and document what they said about the television.
I called the warranty people for the Circuit City Advantage warranty. I spoke with a gentleman. I related the entire story of the television and my efforts at getting a replacement. He said that the warranty that I had was for service and repair and not for the type damages that I had discovered. He could not believe that they inspected the boxes and did not give my money/replacement. He wanted to know what the inspection of the box was all about that they should have just replaced the television because it was broken. He offered to work through Circuit City Corporate to see if he could get a resolution. After a long time on hold, I was turned over to a woman who said the resolution to my issue was that she could not overturn the decision of the Store Manager or Regional Manager. I told her my story and she said that she understood but if I felt the television was defective that I should work it through the manufacturer
June 23. Contacted Circuit City to get proof of refusal of return. Escalation department stated that the register receipt would be proof of purchase and she could/would not be able to provide corporate documentation on conversations for this refusal. She stated that the complaint # would suffice for the rejection of return.
June 24. Received telephone message from the Executive Assistant to the President/CEO of Circuit City that they were in receipt of my complaint and concerns but their decision was not to allow return or replacement of the television. Recommended that I contact Mitsubishi if I felt it was a defect.
July 7 (5:00PM). Advised by Pxxxxx that they had received a letter from Circuit City CEO dated July 1, 2008
I have rewritten the letter leaving out the particular names and addresses. It was signed by the CEO:
Thank you for contactin my offic regarding the Mitsubishi television you purchased on June 19, 2008. Executive Assistant XXXXXX discussed your concerns with District Manager XXXXXX and relayed his findings. i wish to send this brief note as follow up to the situation.
It was discouraging to hear that upon opening your television you discovered that it was damaged. We hope to ensure great customer experiences in our stores and beyond every sales. Your situation is unfortunate, and we are certainly sorry.
As I understand it, XXXX (District Manager) had a chance to speak with regarding your concerns. Unfortunately, he unable to offer you a refund or a replacement telvision however he would like to extend to you the offer of a discount towards the purchase of another unit. We support XXXX's offer as a gesture of goodwill and apology for your poor experience. Should you choose to accept the discount please contact him at xxx.xxx.xxxx. It is important to note that this offer will expire 10 days following receipt of this letter.
We value your patronage, MR. xxxxxx, and look forward to future opportunities ot serve you in our store nationwide or on the Web at circuitcity.com. Again, thank you for bringing this matter to our attention.
Sincerely CEO Signature.
NOTE: The television is currently being repaired by the manufacturer under their warranty. This is an excellent thing for the manufacturer to do. It does not negate the rip-off instituted by Circuit City.
I have filed complaints with several State, County, and Federal consumer protection agencies as well as telling everyone I know...to date the list of people that are aware of this Circuit City experience is considerable.
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