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Getting your money back can sometimes take a media intervention

Samsung Canada: Karen Hibbard and her fiancé bought a 75-inch Samsung TV, which they installed high on a wall. A few months later, they noticed a mark on the top right part of the screen that soon spread halfway across the screen.

Samsung sent a technician, who said the damage was their fault. They could have banged the wall or a child’s toy could have hit the screen.

“He said the panel was broken and wasn’t covered,” Hibbard said. “The panel replacement would be $ 3,670 and was out of stock. We couldn’t get it fixed even if we were willing to pay that insane amount.”

A week after I contacted Samsung Canada, she heard some good news.

“Quick update to let you know Samsung will be servicing the TV at no charge,” said spokesperson Jennifer Groh.

Nissan Canada: James West had transmission problems with his 2013 Altima. After the transmission was replaced twice and the car was towed three times, Nissan promised to send $ 3,570 (half of his total costs) in August 2016.

He eventually received $ 1,250 from his Nissan dealer. But the remaining $ 2,500 was lost in the mail for more than seven months.

“There have been lots of promises made by Nissan customer care, but not kept,” he said. “I can forward the 100 plus emails I’ve sent them with no results.”

On Dec. 6, Nissan Canada spokesman Didier Marsaud promised to check the status of the refund.

On Dec. 7, West picked up the $ 2,500 cheque. He received many apologies, but no explanation for the delay.

“I’m going to have time on my hands now I’m not chasing after Nissan. For my New Year’s resolution, I may try to charge interest on the late payment,” he said.

MGA Home Services: A regional manager visited Jade Chen’s home last October. She thought it was a routine inspection of her hot water tank.

“He showed that the tank had sediments and asked me to sign an approval form to install a filter. The installers came the next day,” she said.

“I just had foot surgery, I wasn’t mobile and I was shocked to find they installed three massive pieces of equipment that I was not informed about.”

Ontario allows a 10-day cooling off period for door-to-door sales. She sent a registered letter to MGA within four days, saying she wanted to cancel the deal.

But the regional manager said she’d have to pay $ 2,700 to remove the equipment or have a lien placed on the property.

According to MGA compliance manager Connor Macgregor, Chen’s contract didn’t fall under the category of door-to-door sales.

“Since we only do scheduled appointments, we have rights under the Consumer Protection Act to collect reasonable compensation for the services performed,” Macgregor said, adding that he was reviewing the complaint.

When I checked back a week later, Chen said MGA had removed the equipment at no cost. She thanked me for writing to the compliance manager and saving her the cost of hiring a lawyer.

News flash: Several readers followed my advice to ask their credit card issuers for a refund on a Sears Canada protection plan. The retailer stopped honouring them after going into liquidation in October.

“I contacted RBC Visa and was connected to the dispute team,” Pauline Strother said. “I received a refund to my Visa account in early December, a nice surprise.”

David House in Thunder Bay bought extended warranties at Sears on appliances he bought after renovating his kitchen in 2016.

“We got $ 1,600 back from our credit card company, almost all our money apart from a couple of months’ worth of warranty,” he said.

Catherine Green found that President’s Choice Financial had denied a refund on a Sears protection plan bought in January 2016, since she had only 18 months to dispute a payment.

“We have made an exception since this is a high-value customer,” PC Financial spokeswoman Lana Gogas said after I asked the company to review her case.

Instead of a prorated refund, Green received PC points equivalent to the amount owed on her Sears plan and says she will donate them to a local food drive.

Ellen Roseman column runs Tuesday in Smart Money. You can reach her at eroseman@thestar.ca

TORONTO STAR