If you run a business where you sell products or services, you will need an online refund policy. This is for two simple reasons:

  • If you have an online business, all legal documents that are necessary for customers to view and accept should be accessible for their convenience.
  • If you have a business that maintains a physical presence, you will most likely have a website for your business. Legal documents, such as your refund policy, should still be accessible by customers online, so they know what to expect when purchasing from you.

The good news is that an online lawyer will be able to draft a refund policy that reflects the way you like to do business with your customers.

What do refund policies cover?

Refund policies cover the situations during which you may return the money paid to you by customers for a particular product or service. The Australian Consumer Law provides certain legal requirements that apply to the provision of refunds to consumers in Australia. When setting up your business, you should have a think about when you will provide a refund to customers, and for what reasons. For more information on the Australian Consumer Law and how it applies to refunds, please visit the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission or have a look at our article “Selling Products Online – Refund and Returns Policy Essentials”.

A well-drafted refund policy will cover:

  • Your obligations under the Australian Consumer Law;
  • Whether you provide refunds for a change of mind;
  • How customers can request a refund; And
  • How refunds will be processed and the relevant time periods.

How can I put them online?

An advantage in seeking legal advice from an online lawyer is that he or she can assist in drafting a refund policy that can be uploaded onto your website.

For example, when purchasing a product or service from your website, you can include a ‘tick box’ that requires customers to tick the box and proceed with the purchase only after they have read and accepted the refund policy.

You could also incorporate your refund policy into your sales terms and conditions, and indicate to customers that their purchase from your website denotes acceptance of your policy.

These are just a few examples of how your refund policy can be uploaded online. Of course, it is a good idea to discuss these options with your online solicitor so he or she can determine the best way to upload your refund policy so it is binding on customers purchasing from your site.

Conclusion

Customers value their relationships with businesses that provide great customer service. Uploading a comprehensive refund policy to your business’s website can help customers understand how you will provide products and services to them, and how they can approach you if something goes wrong.

Lachlan McKnight

Next Steps

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