Wisconsin retailers would have to charge consumers the advertised price of a product, under legislation being proposed at the Capitol.
The bill from state Senator John Lehman (D-Racine) would ban retailers from advertising a low price for an item if it’s only available through a mail-in rebate. The Racine Democrat says consumers shouldn’t enter a store thinking they’re going to pay $50, and then end up paying $100 and filling out a form for the discount.
The bill would still allow retailers to advertise lower prices that are the result of a rebate. However, the business would have to apply the deal to the price in the store. Lehman says the advertised price would have to be what is paid at the time of purchase.
Lehman says many mail-in rebates are never sent in or consumers never get the money back. He says it can be frustrating and confusing for many consumers, and many companies rely on people never trying to claim the rebate price. Lehman says over 400 complaints about mail-in rebates were reported to state consumer protection officials in the past three years.
A Senate committee is expected to vote on the bill later this week.
AUDIO: Andrew Beckett reports (1:02)