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Q.What is the Mail and Telephone Order Merchandise Rule?

A.The Mail or Telephone Order Merchandise Rule provides that a company must have a reasonable basis for stating or implying that a product can be shipped within a certain time. If your advertisement does not include a shipping statement, you must have a reasonable basis to believe you can ship within 30 days. If you can't ship when promised, you must notify the customer of the delay and the right to cancel. For definite delays of up to 30 days, you may treat the customer's silence as agreement to the delay. For longer or indefinite delays, and second and subsequent delays, you must either get the customer's consent or promptly refund all the money the customer paid you without being asked.

You can give updated shipping information over the phone if your Internet ad prompts customers to call to place an order. This information may differ from what you said or implied about the shipping time in your advertisement. The updated phone information supersedes any shipping representation made in your advertisement, but you still must have a reasonable basis for the update.

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Copyright 1999-2018 Melissa C. Marsh. All Rights Reserved. All Information on this website is subject to a Disclaimer and Use Agreement. This information is provided as general information only and should not be construed as legal advice. We advise you to seek the advice of competent legal counsel to address your own specific questions, facts and circumstances.