Is it legal for a business to require you to give them your phone number?

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Is it legal for a business to require you to give them your phone number?

A person purchased a TV and when checking out the cashier asked for the phone number of the customer. The customer didn’t want to give the number out so the cashier took the TV and refused to give the customers money back; stating that they were allowed to do this. Ithought a law was recently enacted that protects a person’s privacy so they do not have to give a business theirr phone number?

Asked on September 8, 2011 under Business Law, New York

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Can a company refuse to sell to you if you don't provide the information it wants? Yes, IF that is disclosed up front. Companies may set their own restrictions or policies on sale, such as no credit cards; or no cash; or must provide photo ID at time of sale; etc. Think about online sales for example--usually you can't even complete the transaction unless you provide all requested information (fill in all fields).

However, the company may not keep both the item (refuse to sell it) and the money; doing so is theft, and the cashier could potentially be arrested for it, if the person notifies the police. The cashier and store could also be sued for not just the money taken, but potentially additional damages as well.


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