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Starting next month, merchants in Qatar will be required to adhere to a new unified return/refund policy put forth by the government.
The new rules should make it easier for consumers to return or exchange goods for any reason, including dissatisfaction with the product due to its color or size, concern over a defect or simply regretting the purchase.
When making the return, consumers do not have to prove the goods are defective or overvalued, a circular from Qatar’s Ministry of Economy and Commerce (MEC) has said.
Additionally, if a shop claims to be selling an item at the lower price in the market, and a consumer finds the product for less somewhere else, then the owner of the first shop must compensate the customer for the price difference.
Merchants are also required to have a space for customers to try on goods before they buy them, and to prominently display their return/exchange policies.
If a product is purchased via credit card, the amount should be returned to the card. If someone pays for an item via check, that can be refunded via check or cash, the ministry said.
The MEC made no mention of how many days consumers have to return an item. Currently, many stores have a seven-day return/exchange policy.
It also did not say whether a receipt must be produced to get a refund, though this is almost always the case in Qatar.
Merchants must adhere to the terms of the circular within the next two weeks, the ministry added.
It urged consumers to report shopkeepers who refuse to adopt the policy to the MEC by calling 16001, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, contacting the ministry on Twitter or Instagram or filing a complaint via their phone app.