Basseterre, St. Kitts (SKNIS): Consumers in St. Kitts and Nevis are encouraged to always request receipts when purchasing goods or services as they serve as legally binding documents indicating that one has paid for a particular item.
“In the case of receipts… that is the legal binding document to prove that yes, we did indeed purchase this item from your store. Before time, we used to make sure that we asked the suppliers to have this done. Some people tell us that they don’t have it in their system and that they would prefer to do a hand-written receipt,” said Trista Wattley-Stennett, Senior Consumer Affairs Officer during the August 25 edition of ‘Working for You’.
Mrs. Wattley-Stennett said that asking suppliers to give receipts and consumers to request one is nothing new, adding that under the Consumer Protection Bill, that is the requirement going forward.
“…We used to have it before but it [has been] strengthened that a supplier of goods and services shall provide a written record for each transaction to the consumers to whom goods and services are supplied,” she said. “The record must have the suppliers’ name or the registered business name…; the address and premises of where the goods or services were supplied from; the date, name and description of the goods or services that they supplied; the unit price for each good and service; quantity; total price; the amount in terms of taxes, and the total price of the entire transaction.”
Paul Queeley, Director within the Department of Consumer Affairs, said that receipts or sales records are important for several reasons and serve as an effective communication tool between suppliers and consumers.
“The sales record is your proof of purchase. You need this document in case there is something faulty with the equipment that you bought and you need to return or you might need to do an exchange,” said the director. “It is also a way of elevating the way of doing business in St. Kitts and Nevis. We need to step away from the old norm where we just give somebody something in their hand and just take the money. You need to have proper documentation of your sales for Inland Revenue purposes and also for consumer purposes.
Director Queeley said that one can never tell what will happen with a product, therefore, it is extremely important for suppliers to ensure that sales records are made available. He urged consumers to also request one before leaving a place of business.