Walmart Store #4568
Manager Behavior/Store climate is abhorrent
I have a very serious complaint about the treatment of customers by local store managers. Specifically, store # 4568 in Blair, NE. My disabled elderly brother bought a Galaxy smartphone from the Blair store in Sept '13. When trying to activate it with a Straight Talk Service Plan, I was told that the phone could not be activated because it hadn't been scanned properly and that I needed to take the phone back to the seller (Blair Walmart) This is extremely inconvenient because my brother has no transportation and is unable to walk. I live nearly 30 miles from Blair and am not able to easily accommodate a trip 'back to the store' (Especially, for a mistake Walmart made)When I did take the phone back to the store, CS couldn't help me and called an assistant manager, who couldn't help either and then called the store manager. After all that, they wanted the original packaging and the sales receipt in order to re-scan it. The receipt and packaging of course had long been thrown away, so sorry......you're out of luck. There's nothing they could do. Okay....so we didn't keep the receipt......our fault. So my elderly disabled brother goes 3 months without phone service saving so he can buy another phone. I take him back to the store in Blair to purchase yet another phone, but before buying ask the sales clerk if it can be returned. Her statement exactly was " you'll have 15 days from date of purchase and will need to keep the packaging and the receipt" but yes, you can return for a full refund. To save time and space, the EXACT same problem occurred with activation, but this time, I ask for specific contact info so I can have Walmart contact them and resolve the issue with them. So, I once again travel to Blair, pick up my brother and take him to the Blair Walmart. We go through the wait for the CS rep, the assistant manager, and then the store manager......Joe. He tells me he WON'T re-scan because that would mean a loss for the store. What? What about having the packaging and the receipt? Doesn't matter, cuz the store will be charged if they re-scan. Told him to call the Straight Talk # and get it resolved b/c my brother is out $100 (actually $200 because the 1st phone was a loss) and has no phone that works. Joe calls the # and when done, he hangs the phone up and hands me a piece of paper with a fax # on it telling me I need to fax the original receipt along with a bunch of other info to Straight Talk. I ask if they have a fax machine that we can use and he says no, he's sorry, but they don't. Excuse me? you don't have a fax machine? whatever! So now I'm about done with the abject unwillingness of this manager to actually help resolve the matter and I tell him I'd just like to get a refund. He says, "Oh I'm sorry, we don't refund pre-paid cell phones because there's so much information that gets stored on them" Number 1: the phone is not activated.....there's NO information on it. Number 2: your signage in the electronics department clearly states that you may refund your purchase if returned within 15 days with receipt and original packaging. (All conditions that we met) He replies that HE WILL NOT REFUND the phone. Even more than the refund, we are seeking a permanent resolution to the behavior of management and customer service in Walmart stores. Their policies obviously do not address employee honesty or integrity or service after the sale. EVEN if responsibility for this issue lies on the shoulders of Straight Talk, don't you think that customer service should consider their own responsibility for ensuring customer satisfaction and being helpful in the face of extreme hardship? Or perhaps investigating why Straight Talk repeatedly has this issue with their activation service and then discontinuing business with them if their service is faulty or even not up to par? We are seeking full reparation for this debacle as well as implementation of policies that incorporate honesty/accountability of store personnel where it relates to customer service. I will be following up with a written complaint to corporate as well as seeking the assistance of consumer protection agencies and legal representation.