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Old 10.03.2011, 10:54
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Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

Hey guys I was wondering if anyone could help me out with this...it has a legal aspect that I am unsure of:

"My fiancee went on 2.3.2011 to a well known shop in Zurich to look at a wedding dress. She went alone because her mother is currently out of the country. Originally the goal was just to look at them. We had agreed that a dress of about 2000 CHF was in the budget and a fair price if we wanted to buy one. Once she got there she was overwhelmed by the various choices and the "hard sell" by the ladies working there. She agreed to purchase a dress that cost about 3700 chf plus added garments that brought the overall cost to 4600 CHF. She signed an agreement to purchase the dress, a binding Kaufvertrag and paid a deposit of 2000 CHF. Of course this caused a huge problem when she came home that the decision was made unilaterally to purchase that type of dress. Finally the glitter wore off and she saw the error.

She had left the store 15 minutes before it closed and the next day she called them 10 minutes after they opened to rescind the order and to cancel it. The lady on the telephone was understanding and said they would cancel it and not order the dress. (from their supplier) However, the 2000 CHF could only be returned as a gift certificate. I was willing to accept this.

A few days later a trip was made to the store to discuss the matter further and we were rudely surprised when we were informed that we could get the store credit only if we paid the entire balance of the 4600 chf. The lady pointed at the document we signed and said there was nothing she could do.

A follow up call was made to question this and the same lady that said that we could have the 2000 chf as store credit was now stating the same story as the store clerck. Apparently they claim that the dress was ordered anyways and that they cannot cancel it."

So the question is, do they have any legal leeway. It seems very suspicious if they ordered the dress that they would be willing to offer store credit. Also they are not willing to produce a purchase order for the dress that was ordered. Are there any rights as consumers that they have?
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Old 10.03.2011, 11:48
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

Oh dear. Decide in haste, repent at leisure. Based on the info available, it doesn't seem the store has the problem. Perhaps if all else fails, sell the voucher at a loss but try to recover as much as possible. A rather bitter tale of customer service. Sorry for your loss!
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Old 10.03.2011, 11:55
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

I guess they don`t care too much about return customers
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Old 10.03.2011, 11:56
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

I was tempted to name and shame but don't wish to draw the EF into any legal problems
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Old 10.03.2011, 12:04
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

Look on the bright side, many years from now, in married life, when youve been a bad boy and your wifey gets on your case, you can always remind her about this.........
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Old 10.03.2011, 12:06
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

Legally you probably don't have a leg to stand on. but if your German is fairly fluent, let's say I would be strongly tempted to drop by and say that you are in no way trying to threaten them, but if you saw other people on the Internet Forum you are a member of asking for recommendations for a wedding dress shop, you would feel morally oblliged to advise the ladies under no circumstances to go without their partner to select a dress. Not implying that the shop is pressuring at all, but because their selection of attractive dresses may seduce a much-in-love lady to spend too much on a wedding dress which she will only wear once. There is simply too much money at stake if the lady gets carried away.
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Old 10.03.2011, 12:18
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

Poor you, I understand the pressure that your fiancee must have felt, I think it is very important for the bride to be to go with someone else though or to state a budget. Best of luck
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Old 10.03.2011, 13:10
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

I don't get why they have the rights to do that. In any other countries they will have cancel it without a blink and nothing more will have happened from this. Here, they have all the rights!

It wasn't days after, and obviously they didn't have time to pass the order yet nor the retailer to already begin the work...

Honestly it can't be acceptable?
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Old 10.03.2011, 13:16
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

Unfortunately thats how it seems to work here.....The contract was signed and rescinded within 14 hours.....or 25 minutes of their store operating hours.
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Old 10.03.2011, 13:18
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

I agree with Longbyt - legally you dont have a leg to stand on as your fiancee has signed the papers.

However, given the short time (15 minutes before closing and 10 minutes after opening) a little flexibility on their part wouldnt go amiss. Some people....

A solution is for your fiancee to go back to the shop to negotiate for her to pick something else out. If she really doesnt like her dress, explain that she really shouldnt be stuck with a dress that she doesnt like on the biggest day of her life. These women are in the wedding business, surely they can empathise. If its the shop that I think you are referring to, there are loads of gorgeous dresses in there and I am sure she can find something else to her liking, rather than stress about getting her money back.

Good luck.

PS: ask fiancee to turn on the water works - nothing is more scary than a bridezilla in the middle of an emotional meldown.
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Old 10.03.2011, 13:19
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

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It wasn't days after, and obviously they didn't have time to pass the order yet nor the retailer to already begin the work...
We really don't know though, do we? We certainly cannot prove that the dress was not ordered that very evening without being able to check their books or their computer.
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In any other countries they will have cancel it without a blink...
I appreciate that it seems brutal - but when you go, off your own bat, into a shop and sign on the dotted line and pay a deposit for a dress, you expect the firm to order the dress you chose immediately and to deliver it in good time. I'd certainly try to put a fraction more pressure on, as I said above. That all the money should be in the form of store credit is harsh but to say that other places do it differently isn't going to cut any ice with them.
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Old 10.03.2011, 13:21
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

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I agree with Longbyt - legally you dont have a leg to stand on as your fiancee has signed the papers.

However, given the short time (20 minutes before closing and 10 minutes after opening) a little flexibility on their part wouldnt go amiss. Some people....

A solution is for your fiancee to go back to the shop to negotiate for her to pick something else out. If she really doesnt like her dress, she really shouldnt be stuck with a dress that she doesnt like on the biggest day of her life. If its the shop that I think you are referring to, there are loads of gorgeous dresses in there and I am sure she can find something else to her liking, rather than stress about getting her money back.

Good luck.
The problem wasn't the dress but the price of the dress... I wouldn't be happy to be ''force'' to buy something there with the disgraceful attitude of those women...

The dress haven't been order yet nor produce and they could easily be flexible.

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Old 10.03.2011, 13:23
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

She wasn't 'forced' to make the order though - she, like many of us at some time or other, got carried away. And the law says that ordered is ordered.
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Old 10.03.2011, 13:25
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

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We really don't know though, do we? We certainly cannot prove that the dress was not ordered that very evening without being able to check their books or their computer.
I appreciate that it seems brutal - but when you go, off your own bat, into a shop and sign on the dotted line and pay a deposit for a dress, you expect the firm to order the dress you chose immediately and to deliver it in good time. I'd certainly try to put a fraction more pressure on, as I said above. That all the money should be in the form of store credit is harsh but to say that other places do it differently isn't going to cut any ice with them.
Maybe but it does reinforce my opinion about the way things are done here. Flexibility isn't a force here, isn't it? It could have been simple to do and it goes a long way in your reputation when you do try to make your customer happy.
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Old 10.03.2011, 13:27
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

In most other countries the legal aspect would be the same, signing on the dotted line would be a sealed contract. What may be different in other countries is that the shop may be willing to cancel the contract out of good will but they do not have to.

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I don't get why they have the rights to do that. In any other countries they will have cancel it without a blink and nothing more will have happened from this. Here, they have all the rights!

It wasn't days after, and obviously they didn't have time to pass the order yet nor the retailer to already begin the work...

Honestly it can't be acceptable?
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Old 10.03.2011, 13:30
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

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In most other countries the legal aspect would be the same, signing on the dotted line would be a sealed contract. What may be different in other countries is that the shop may be willing to cancel the contract out of good will but they do not have to.
Just that goes a long way!
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Old 10.03.2011, 13:34
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

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The problem wasn't the dress but the price of the dress... I wouldn't be happy to be ''force'' to buy something there with the disgraceful attitude of those women...

The dress haven't been order yet nor produce and they could easily be flexible.

kiwiguy, can you please clarify if its the cost or if its the dress she doesnt like?

Personally, I think its still possible to negotiate. I am sure if a fluent german speaker goes in with his fiancee, more doors will open than someone trying to address the situation in bad German or English. Why not see if a fellow EFer fluent in Swiss German is happy to go in the shop with your fiancee to negotiate?

Also - at the risk of sounding harsh, no matter how hard selling a person is, no one actually pointed a gun to the poor girl's head to make her sign on the dotted line. I feel awful for her but if hardselling is the reason for rescinding a contract, the world will be in chaos. Fact of the matter is, in any country around the world, signing on the dotted line means its signed sealed and delivered. Having said that, there are ways to work around the problem than insisting on a full refund. It will be less of a bitter pill for the shop to swallow.
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Old 10.03.2011, 13:35
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

Kiwiguy in your posts you haven't said if your bride to be still loves the dress & if she would still actually like to wear it it on your wedding day. Does she still want it? If so can she have it & off set the cost by selling it after your wedding?
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Old 10.03.2011, 13:40
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

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Fact of the matter is, in any country around the world, signing on the dotted line means its signed sealed and delivered. Having said that, there are ways to work around the problem than insisting on a full refund. It will be less of a bitter pill for the shop to swallow.
Sorry but this isn't true... From my own experiences...
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Old 10.03.2011, 13:53
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Re: Problem with a wedding dress store Zurich

I don't know if there is, but it is worth a check, if there are consumer protection laws that allow you to rescind an order within 24 hours. It may apply at this price range.

Also, I assumed you paid with cash, and not with credit card. With a credit card, you still have leverage to contest the charge, and the hassle for the store is oftentimes not worth their time. A credit card company might be able to exact some cooperation from the store.
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