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Sony fined $2.4 million over PlayStation refund refusals

It made "false and misleading representations," a consumer watchdog said.

Sony has been fined $2.4 million in Australia.
James Martin/CNET

Sony was hit with a $2.5 million (AU$3.5 million) fine for denying customers refunds for faulty PlayStation games, a consumer watchdog said Friday. It made "false and misleading representations" about people's consumer law rights, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) noted.

The commission filed a lawsuit against Sony Interactive Entertainment Network Europe, which runs the company's Australian operations, in May 2019 after the company told four customers it didn't have to offer refunds for faulty games after they had been downloaded and it had been more than 14 days since the purchase. 

"Consumer guarantee rights do not expire after a digital product has been downloaded and certainly do not disappear after 14 days or any other arbitrary date claimed by a game store or developer," ACCC chairperson Rod Sims said in a release.

The court also declared Sony Europe breached Australia's consumer law by telling one of the four consumers it didn't have to provide a refund unless the game developer authorized it, and by telling a fifth consumer that Sony Europe could provide a refund using virtual PlayStation currency instead of money.

"What Sony told these consumers was false and does not reflect the consumer guarantee rights afforded to Australian consumers under the Australian Consumer Law," Sims said.

Sony didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

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