If Ireceived an unsolicited merchandise, do I get to keep it?

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If Ireceived an unsolicited merchandise, do I get to keep it?

My boyfriend ordered an iPad from a company that is not Apple, and he is to pay it off in installments. He had the transaction under his name, and he had it sent to me at my work. I received the iPad 6 days ago, and there was a paper inside the box saying that it was a gift. Then yesterday, I received another iPad in the mail from the same company without any papers inside. I know it’s from the same company because their logo was on the box. My boyfriend called the company and they said that they would call him back, but they didn’t. Am I right to keep the second iPad?

Asked on August 18, 2010 under General Practice, California

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

The first transaction is without a doubt a contract as between your boyfriend and the company.  That is not considered unsolicited merchandise.  The second seems to be a mistake on the part of the company.  They most likely filled the same order twice. You yourself probably figured that since you gave them a call. It may be a good idea to send them a letter informing them that "under California Civil Code section 1584.5, an unsolicited item is treated as a gift" and that you are not required to pay for it. You need to cover yourself and advise them that you did not order it and you are putting them on notice of the law.  Understand that it may prompt the return of the iPad.  How you proceed is really then up to you. Best to take the high road.  Good luck.


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