Gov. Gretchen Whitmer
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 16, 2019
Gov. Whitmer, A.G. Nessel Remind Consumers of Pricing Protections During Holiday Shopping Season
LANSING, Mich. — Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Attorney General Dana Nessel today released pricing protection information to remind shoppers of their consumer financial rights during the holiday shopping season.
“As Michiganders check off their holiday shopping lists this season, I want to make sure that they are protected at the checkout,” Whitmer said. “These pricing protections will help to increase transparency during the busy shopping season to ensure that consumers only pay the lowest listed price for their items and get the biggest bang for their buck.”
Under the Shopping Reform and Modernization Act, Michigan law requires retailers to clearly display the price of items within the store. If a consumer is charged more than the displayed price, the law gives shoppers specific rights, which may entitle that person to a refund.
“To ensure that Michiganders are equipped with the necessary tools to protect their generosity this holiday season and beyond, Gov. Whitmer and I are urging consumers to know their rights under the law,” Nessel said. “We are also reminding shoppers that if a discrepancy arises, we want to know about it. By visiting mi.gov/ag, consumers can review the 15 Days of Scams Calendar – a variety of consumer tips – and also file a complaint with my office.”
During the holiday season, retailers are responsible for updating their checkout systems to reflect the price of sale items. If there is a conflict between what is displayed for the item and what is charged at checkout, the lowest price displayed must be charged for that item.
To qualify for a refund, a consumer must be able to answer “yes” to every question:
To receive a refund, a consumer must notify the retailer in person or writing within 30 days of the transaction. The retailer has two days to refund the consumer for the difference between the listed price and the charged price, plus a "bonus" of 10 times the difference not less than $1 and with a maximum of $5. If that does not occur, the consumer may bring a lawsuit to cover the damages, and attorney fees of up to $300.
Additionally, if a consumer suspects a store’s failure to properly display the price of an item under the Shopping Reform and Modernization Act, they may file a complaint with the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development at (517) 655-8202 or online.
For additional information on the State’s pricing protection: