The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) reiterates that the “No Return, No Exchange” policy is illegal because it constitutes an unfair business practice.

Under Republic Act No. 7394 (RA 7394), also called the “Consumer Act of the Philippines,” and its Implementing Rules and Regulations, the words “No Return, No Exchange” or words to that effect cannot be written on a contract of sale, a receipt for a sale, or any other document that proves a sale, or anywhere else in a store or business. 

The Consumer Act of the Philippines specifies that, “sellers are obliged to honor their warranties and grant corresponding remedies to consumers,” the DTI said.

As such, consumers should be allowed to return or exchange the goods, or avail themselves of other remedies, in case of hidden faults or defects, or any charge the buyer was not aware of the time of purchase. In enforcing these remedies, however, consumers should bear in mind to at least prove the sale transaction and show an evidence such as the official receipt. In cases where the official receipt is not available, the buyer may resort to any other alternative proof. 

In the case of medicines, the seller is obliged to replace medicines that are adulterated, misbranded, counterfeit or expired upon purchase. However, if the product bought has no imperfection or defect, or if the medicine purchased is not adulterated, misbranded, counterfeit or expired, the seller may either refuse to replace or refund or, in the exercise of goodwill towards their customers, may grant the replacement or request for refund. 

DTI Consumer Protection Group (CPG) Assistant Secretary, Atty. Ann Claire C. Cabochan emphasizes, “Consumers are entitled to the repair, replacement and refund of products with defects. However, they are not entitled to these because of a change of mind or a mistake on their part.”  

“This is why the Department constantly advises the consumers to examine the product prior to purchase and ask about the seller’s return and exchange policies,” Cabochan explains.