Catherine's Clothing Store

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Refund Issue
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LYNCHBURG, VIRGINIA -- My complaint is with the store's refund policy when you have a return with receipt. The items I returned were put on my check card but since that time I had to change accounts with my bank and when I returned the items the salesperson refused to use the new bank check card that was issued by my bank. I had my proper ID and the new check card and I access to show the salesperson the account that the original card was still open (the bank keeps these open for 30 days before totally closing). I did not have the original card because the bank took it when they gave me the replacement. The sales associate insisted that I had to take the Catherine's gift card in place of a cash credit. I am more than upset because Catherine's had no problem taking my cash out of my bank for these items. I do not feel that I have to be forced to use a Catherine's Gift card when at the moment I do not ever want to step into another Catherine's or Lane Bryant store again. I have already called 3 Catherine's customers that are friends and told them how I was treated, we agreed that they will shop at other retailers and I will continue to spread the word until my issue is resolved. I can understand if I did not have a receipt but the sales person had everything she needed to complete my transaction in the proper way and not left me feeling like I was a criminal for asking for my cash credit back.
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User Replies:
ktisnumeroUNO on 01/23/2012:
I don't think it was a matter of wanting to treat you like a criminal. I know that where I work, it is physically impossible to refund a card that is not the original from the receipt. Its based on agreements made between retailer and credit companies, and also these rules are in place to protect you from having any low life swipe your bag and make a return for CASH to their own bank account. A letter from your bank is all well and good, but could be created with ease on a computer with Photoshop on it and a good printer. Most retailers will give you an option to receive a check by mail which might take 2-3 weeks sometimes but you wouldn't be stuck with a gift card at least.
CowboyFan on 01/23/2012:
Catherine website states: "With an original receipt, and within 90 days of the original date of purchase, Catherines will provide an exchange or full refund in the original form of payment."

You switched your account, not Catherines. Since you no longer have the "original form of payment" because you have no card, then a gift receipt seems to be what the default payment method.
I love my son on 01/23/2012:
I love how people stop shopping places because they didn't get there way..Companies have policy's and yes sometimes they can over ride company's policy and sometimes it just can't be done..They offered you a store credit,you also could have had it refunded to the closed account and the band would issue credit to new account.
Venice09 on 01/23/2012:
Actually, the closed account is still open, but they couldn't issue the refund because the bank kept the old card. Many stores do not need the card to process a return and issue a credit. Too bad Catherine's isn't one of them.
Anonymous on 01/23/2012:
Kohl's never asks for the card and gives cash back
Venice09 on 01/23/2012:
Target doesn't need the card either. I never pay with cash so I never get it back, but that's good to know!
Anonymous on 01/23/2012:
Venice, that's for debit cards. I don't know about credit cards
MRM on 01/23/2012:
You don't get cash back with credit cards unless you're in a rewards program.
Venice09 on 01/23/2012:
I mostly use a credit card. I like using someone else's money for a month. And if there is a problem, my money isn't on the line.

I have gotten cash back from a credit card transaction at Shop Rite. It even happened at Walmart a few times when I used to shop there.
ticia232 on 01/24/2012:
Venice, Target does need the card to put it back into the account if you use debit, but they can also give you cash.
JS on 12/02/2012:
I have an even better (I think) story. I lost my receipt but had the tags, even the little plastic sticker on a pair of workout pants I had picked up there. I returned the very next day was told that I could not get the entire money refunded. These pants were not on sale and were still full price on the rack. I could only get back $14 (but I had paid $25!).

Not only that I had to give my name, contact info, etc., seriously way too much hassle for getting only part of my money back. Yes, so maybe I was unreasonable and walked out after telling her to keep the money and the pants. But I wasn't rude and didn't even raise my voice.

I was totally okay w/not getting my money back and getting store credit but to me this was reverse shoplifting. With this and the fact that my local LB never seems to have my 14P size in jeans any more and *helpfully* suggest the website I am walking away from this family of brands. There are too many other options out there and they treat us like we have no other choices. Sayonara LB and Catherines.
bb on 03/09/2013:
switching gears.been Catherines customer for 63 years. shopped Tupelo Ms Catherines 03/08/13. Left $200 to $300 purchase at the register because Catherines employee would not leave the clothing on the hangers. Who inventories hangers. How much do those hangers cost? Been asking for purchases to be left on the hangers for years. Not every customer will ask for hangers. Don't you think that it's cost effective for customers who do ask?
Catherine's employee on 12/08/2013:
I am so very sorry you ladies have had ill experiences with Catherine's. I am a part-time sales lead at my local Catherine's here in FL and feel the need to shed a little light on some of these issues. We recently had a customer in with the same kind of refund issue. Her purse and all contents were stolen and she had to get a return done on her new card. It is against corporate policy for us to give refunds in cash form when a credit/debit card was used, HOWEVER, an exception really should be made if you are a long-term Catherine's customer. Our customer was issued a refund on her new card and the event, which would have been flagged in our system, was documented on paper and in and email to our district manager. Why the employee at your location gave you a hard time about, I don't have an answer for, but good customer service should always prevail and I really don't think she would have given you such difficulties just to do it. Just so you ladies know, there is a security system within our register software that picks up fraudulent activity and flags it for Loss Prevention to look into. A refund like this would have done just that because it is out of policy. Should any of you ever have any questions about a refund situation like this, please feel free to speak to corporate about it prior to traveling to Catherine's. More often than not, we will all work with you, I'm sure.

The hangers... Ohhh the hangers. I understand the frustration about the hangers, this happens all too often. Unfortunately we can't give the hangers away on every item purchased because our shipments do not come with the hangers (except bras). Additionally, each store is given an "allowance" per month for supplies such as trash bags, pens, clips, envelopes, and even hangers. I am told that our hangers are $3 each. I do not know how true this is since I don't do the ordering, but I know they cost SOMETHING. If we gave away the hangers for each item every time someone asked for them, we wouldn't be making a whole lot in profits and I can tell you all now that the prices would go up, again, for everything! Some ladies think that not many want the hangers and insist they have hangers for their items because of this, but there are MANY that ask for hangers EVERYDAY! I know my location tries to allow hangers for dresses and business attire, and I think every store should follow this, but please be understanding that we simply cannot give all the hangers away without negative repercussions on everyone. No, not every customer will ask for the hangers, but those that do add up and add up QUICKLY!

In regards to returns without the receipt, this again goes back to the fraud software. Our computers are rebooted every morning with the sales for that day. We can override to a certain extent, but you have to understand that our jobs are at stake when we do an out-of-policy return and for those of us that rely solely on our little job with Catherine's to feed and provide for our families, an out-of-policy return because you lost your receipt is not something we look forward to risking our jobs for. The computer automatically inputs the items lowest selling price in the past 2 or 3 months. My suggestion? Keep your receipts in a SAFE place... Just in case. We Catherine's employees have our jobs for a reason and we would prefer not to lose them. We are required to stay as close to policy and procedures as we possibly can. Too much straying is detrimental to us. It's not that we don't WANT to help our customers, it's just that we are limited to what we can do on a store level.

Giving your information: You are never REQUIRED to give your number, name, etc. If you don't WANT to do this, you are more than welcome to ask the associate to bypass it so you can ring up and go about your day. Catherines likes to collect this information to not only send you offers (you opt in and out of), but also records credit info, perks card info and even recent purchases (limited info on purchases) and stores them in your account for access when you give your name or phone number. Ever had an item ordered to be sent to you from another store? Instead of standing at the register giving your full name and address repeatedly for shipping purposes, by giving your phone number initially, all of this info is pulled up in our system to expedite the process.

Please don't give up on Catherine's because you had one or two negative experiences. Sometimes the issue is beyond a store employees power and sometimes we can tweak it.
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