If I work in a retail phone store and just had a customer come in asking about phones on display but which are out of stock, is it illegal to still display them?

She stated that it was illegal to display them if we didn’t have them to sell. Is this accurate?

Asked on April 21, 2015 under Business Law, Pennsylvania


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

No, she's not even close to right as long as you did *intentionally* display a phone you knew you were not and would not carry, just to draw customers in ("bait and switch"). But sometimes stores sell out and need to be restocked--as long as this was not a deliberate attempt to defraud or trick customers, there was no illegality.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.