Curry’s PC World receives a barrage of customer complaints, and staff aren’t happy either !
Product after-care plans have been pushed by sales staff for many years and, in some cases, are well worth the money, by providing peace of mind and reassurance for many customers. However, it now seems that Curry’s customers are being charged for the insurance, even though they never signed up for it, or turned down the cover.
And staff on the sales floor are not happy either. We looked at Glassdoor.co.uk an online reviewer site where employees and former employees anonymously review companies. 539 reviews from past and present employees were posted and many have complained about the targets they were forced to meet to sell after care products.
Here are some of the comments posted on Glassdoor from employees:
“If you do not manage to sell the extras, such as the care plan then your end-of-period report may not make the managers happy, so you have to at all times be slightly pushy in terms of making people spend more money”.
“Nothing screams scam more to me than when I see how much we charge for the insurance on some electronics, when it doesn’t even cover accidental damage”.
“Being forced to illegally sell After Care Plans to customers even if they politely say no”.
“Lying to customers about the care plans and not giving them the choice to choose what they want but rather what the company wants us to give them”.
“Too much pressure for care plans, no support from management”.
“The targets are ever increasing, and if you don’t get a care plan in on the sale…expect a very uncomfortable conversation with the manager”.
As well as complaints from staff, thousands of shoppers have complained after finding Curry’s had taken money from their accounts each month for product insurance. The insurance is supposed to cover repair or replacement for faulty goods. The complaints made explain how customers never agreed to pay for extra cover and turned it down.
In one particular case, Curry’s charged a customer £5.40 a month for over five years, a whopping total of £324, small enough to miss if you’re not in the habit of combing through your monthly bank statements.
Consumer Advocacy Platform ‘A Spokesman Said’ have received hundreds of complaints from customers who have experienced mis-selling by Curry’s. Many of whom were shocked and angered when they discovered money was being taken unknowingly from their accounts, and also experienced problems contacting Curry’s when they wanted to cancel their policies.
A Spokesman Said, is a consumer advocacy platform that aims to give consumers a voice where they have been unfairly treated and publicly demand a resolution with businesses, that is fair and transparent.
Here are just some of the complaints posted on A Spokesman Said, regarding the mis-selling of aftercare or insurance plans:
“I bought an AC Chromebook from PC World and keep getting charged £7.50 a month. I haven’t been in the country for 4 months so I never saw these charges until I returned. Extremely unhappy, I want it cancelled and some sort of refund”
“Sent emails to customer service to stop this £5.50 product support charge I found coming out bank. Nobody responding… what is going on? 4 months of these charges now”
“I purchased a computer on 27th of September 2017 at Curry’s (Over 1 Grand). I wish to cancel the £9.49 product support card payment, taken directly from my bank account, which I never asked for or agreed to”
“I purchased a laptop over 1 year ago from PC World Doncaster and wish to cancel the monthly £7.50 product support AG card payment, thats been coming out of my bank ever since”
“I bought a camera in Curry’s PC World and for the last 9 months £3 have been deducted from my debit card every month, no idea why”
“Keep paying £9.50 a month each for two laptops I bought years ago, no info on how to shut this down! Anyone know how to stop this?”
So Is the cover even needed in the first place?
Some customers like to have the piece of mind that they are fully covered and it can be sold to you this way as a useful product that you will benefit from, but do you actually need the extra cover? And have you considered the following levels of cover you probably already have in place? Those protections are as follows:-
The Consumer Rights Act 2015 says: Goods must be as described, fit for purpose and of satisfactory quality. During the expected lifespan of your product you are entitled to the following:
Up to 30 days: If your goods are faulty, you can get an immediate refund.
Up to 6 months: If it can’t be repaired or replaced, you’re entitled to a full refund in most cases.
Up to 6 years: If the goods do not last a reasonable length of time you may be entitled to some money back.
Are you covered by your home insurance? In most cases your home insurance will cover accidental damage for your belongings in and outside of your home. For example, check to see that you are covered if you take your laptop outside of your house and have an accident. The vast majority of home insurance policy’s sold will cover your good’s in and outside of the home.
All products you purchase will have a manufacturer guarantee. Each one varies in content depending on the manufacturer. You may want to use your warranty or guarantee if you bought the item 7 months ago and your guarantee lasts for a year, some may even last up to 24 months. It is important to check if you need to fill in a warranty card, some manufacturers will not accept a claim from you unless you have filled this out and returned it to them.
It is also important that anyone selling additional cover to you is considering the above. If they are selling you a cover that mirrors the guarantee, this could be considered mis-selling. They must also consider if the policy is of any use to you, they must also be upfront with you as to what exactly the policy covers.
It is correct that these types of policies have a place in the market, but it is important that companies abide by the rules on how it is sold to customers, something it appears Curry’s have not been doing.
After receiving thousands of complaints, Curry’s says they have launched an urgent investigation.