Online Refunds

Question

What are the requirements of an online stores refund policy with respect to khiyar for the sale to be valid?

For example, some stores say “refund for any reason within X days of purchase”, while others say “refund for any reason within X days of package arrival”.

 

In which of these instances are all the necessary rights/requirements of the various khiyar met and which kinds of khiyar do such policies actually encompass?

Answer

Online stores sell their products by posting a picture of the sale item on their website. The customer opts to purchase an item after viewing the online advertisement. This picture sometimes differs from the actual item in various ways, which entitles the customer to Khiyaar-e-Ru’yah, meaning that the purchaser is entitled to return the item on seeing the actual item the very first time, if this was not the actual item that he required or ordered. Now, this can only be possible when the customer receives delivery of the item and sees it, and not prior to receiving the item. 

If the seller affords the customer the right to return the purchased item within a stipulated number of days from purchase (within x days of purchase), it is very possible that delivery of the item is delayed (due to some reason) and the item only reaches the purchaser after the final refund date. The purchaser will therefore (as per the company policy), be deprived of his right of Khiyaar-e-Ru’ya in this instance. The second option which states, “Refund for any reason within x days of package arrival,’ seems to be the more correct option based on the explanation mentioned in the first paragraph (that the customer can only express satisfaction after package arrival).

In Khiyaar-e-Aib, the moment the purchaser becomes aware of a fault/defect which was from the supplier (which he was previously unaware of) then he is entitled to return the item. We assume that this shouldn’t be an issue since most companies gladly exchange or refund faulty items. Also, the refund policies listed above (in both options) clearly state that the refund will be done (within x days) for any reason (even if the item is not defective). This indicates that faulty items fall in a different category. altogether and follow a different ruling (in that the company would normally refund a defective item that is returned to them, irrespective of the fact that the item is returned after the expiry of x amount of days from the date of purchase or delivery).

In conclusion, the above policies (of returning the item after an x amount of days), encompass Khiyaar Ru’yah, whilst Khiyaar-e-Aib is excluded.          

Checked and Approved By:

Mufti Muhammed Saeed Motara Saheb D.B.

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