Why won’t Asos deliver the refund that I’m due?

Can you ask the fashion retailer Asos why it won’t refund me the delivery charge on some clothes I bought but later sent back because they were the wrong size?

While it has agreed to refund the cost of the items, it refuses to refund me the £4 delivery charge. It claims it is operating within consumer contract law, but my research suggests otherwise.

During a lengthy online chat I was told that there is no mechanism to refund the delivery charge because the clothes arrived on time.

I have repeatedly pointed out that the timing of the delivery is immaterial, and that the Consumer Contracts Regulations 2013 state that delivery charges should be refunded.

I know that it is only £4, but this problem must affect a great many others who are being short-changed.

KW, Buckinghamshire

Your letter is a timely reminder of the online shopping rules, which affect an ever-growing group of people.

As you say, customers are entitled to a full refund – including the basic delivery charge – as per the quoted regulations, provided they cancel the order within 14 days.

Consumers who have decided an item is not suitable have to send it back at their cost, unused. If the item was faulty, or not as ordered, the retailer should also refund the return costs. Note, though, that if you opted for a more expensive next-day delivery the retailer only has to refund the cost of its basic offer.

It’s not clear why Asos, which last week announced its profits had tripled during lockdown, refused to refund you.

Its own website is pretty clear on the subject. However, this may have been amended after we took up your complaint. The company has confirmed that it is its position to refund customers in your shoes, and it has repaid your £4.

“We will also pick this up with our customer care team to ensure the correct process is followed when an order isn’t eligible for our standard free delivery, and therefore eligible for a refund on the delivery charge portion of a payment,” it says.

This is not the first time Asos’s lack of delivery cost refunds has been highlighted. What has been your experience – and that of other online firms?